overviewPhD Presentation NOTES #10
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[A list of references is provided in ~Notes #20]
Academic confidence

  • Confidence is a robust dimensional characteristic of individual differences (Stankov, 2012).

  • Confidence can be considered as a sub-construct of self-efficacy and is concerned with an individual's beliefs about their capability to 'get something done'.

  • Students who enter higher education or college with confidence in their academic abilities to perform well do perform significantly better than their less-confident peers. (Chemers et al, 2001).

  • When students lack confidence in their capacity to tackle academic tasks they are less likely to engage positively with them (Pajares & Schunk, 2002).

  • Academic confidence that is fostered as part of learning community initiatives may be an important contributor to academic success (Allen & Bir, 2012). Such confidence can be regarded as students' beliefs that attaining a successful outcome to a task is likely to be the positive reward for an investment of worthwhile effort (Moller et al, 2005).

  • Conversely, in those for whom confidence in their academic abilities is weak, the interpretation of the accompanying anxiety related to academic performance can be falsely attributed as a marker of incompetence which may lead to the very failure that is feared (Usher & Pajares, 2008).

  • Perceptions of capability and motivation, which include judgments of confidence, feature significantly in self-concept theories, in particular, social cognitive theory. The idea is that beliefs in personal efficacy can be better predictors of academic outcomes than actual abilities or evidence from prior performance because these beliefs are fundamental in establishing how learners are likely to use the knowledge and academic skills that they have acquired (Pajares & Miller, 1995).