Assessing Students' Self-Efficacy for Learning at an International University in Thailand

Richard Lynch

Abstract


Development of a commitment to lifelong learning among students has become a key objective of education throughout the world. This is particularly the case in university study at both the undergraduate and, more especially, at the graduate levels, where the students are expected to shoulder increasingly greater responsibility for their own learning in both classroom-based and online learning contexts. An important aspect of that responsibility lies in the acquisition of metacognitive self-regulatory skills whereby students are enabled to manage their own learning in a variety of environments. Social cognitive self-regulation theory posits that an individuals’ beliefs in their ability to manage their own learning will be predictive of their active participation in current learning which will in turn be predictive of their commitment to lifelong learning. This paper describes a small scale validation study – prelude to an intended large scale university-wide study - of a questionnaire to measure self-efficacy for university level learning. The original 10-item scale, composed of 2 sub-scales (self-efficacy for information processing and self-efficacy for information finding), was first developed by researchers in Italy in 2007. It was slightly modified for the current study (a further 2-item sub-scale being added to measure self-efficacy for English listening and reading comprehension) and completed by a convenience sample of graduate (M.Ed.) students (n = 38) at an English-medium international university in Thailand. Each of the 3 sub-scales attained satisfactory degrees of internal consistency reliability. As well, in line with selfefficacy theory, correlations between each of the 3 sub-scales as well as the total scale and the respondents’ self-reported expected grades were robust and statistically significant.


Keywords


Academic Self-Regulation; International; Lifelong Learning; Self-Efficacy for Learning; Social Cognitive Learning Theory; Measurement Scale; Metacognition; Motivation for Learning; Thailand

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