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Self-Efficacy

Self-efficacy is one of the most important constructs to affect achievement. Efficacy can affect both individuals and groups and can be derived from several sources.



Self-efficacy is one of the most important constructs to affect achievement. Efficacy can affect both individuals and groups and can be derived from several sources. Efficacy information is obtained from social comparison, physiological variables, emotional states, vicarious experiences, past experiences, and imaged experiences. How can efficacy beliefs best be enhanced to significantly modify behavior? Why?


Efficacy information is obtained from social comparison, physiological variables, emotional states, vicarious experiences, past experiences, and imaged experiences.

Self-efficacy is very important when it comes to studying performers for various reasons. For one self-efficacy can have a largely positive effect on self-esteem. When one's self-esteem is exceptionally high, whether unfounded or legitimized through external sources, people, or other proverbial measuring sticks, it can have a catapulting effect on the way one perceive themselves as they are executing any task at hand. With that said, self-esteem is usually heightened after past successes. When studying social cognitive theorists, such as Bandura poses that mastery experience, which postulates that an individual's past success will have a positive effect on any future attempts to complete the task (Warner, 2014), can have an impact on self-efficacy. A veteran basketball player who has to shoot critical free throws in clutch situations will approach his or her work much differently than a rookie player who has not experienced that amount of pressure.


“When one's self-esteem is exceptionally high, whether unfounded or legitimized through external sources, people, or other proverbial measuring sticks, it can have a catapulting effect on the way one perceive themselves as they are executing any task at hand.

Self-efficacy is also important in the study of motivation. Bandura (1997) also proposed that verbal persuasion, i.e. the attempt to convince an individual of his abilities to execute a task also was perceived as a source of self-efficacy. This is seen all the time in pregame or halftime speeches by coaches. Although this is a very powerful construct in improving self-efficacy, many theorists actually believe verbal persuasion and motivation to be the weakest forms of devolving this trait (Warner, 2014). If self-efficacy is high, it will be easier for the individual to draw from within themselves to perform anything that is required of them as opposed to an individual who has low self efficacy (thus requiring external motivators to get them going). This is extremely important especially when they are in the midst of high-pressure environments, reliving past traumatic experiences, and when the environment itself has an overbearing effect on an individual. In my past experience dealing with high level performers, and based on what I have seen in research, the best way to improve self-efficacy is through repetition. I believe it is easier to ‘strengthen your strengths’ than to spend an immense amount of time trying to strengthen your weaknesses. Repetition builds confidence, and an unshakeable confidence over time will improve self-efficacy.



References:

Bandura, A. (1997). Self-efficacy: The exercise of control. New York, NY:

Freeman.


Warner, L. M., Schüz, B., Wolff, J. K., Parschau, L., Wurm, S., & Schwarzer, R. (2014). Sources of self-efficacy for physical activity. Health Psychology, doi:10.1037/hea0000085







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