Identifying events that impact self-efficacy in physics learning


We present a method of analyzing the development of self-efficacy in real time using a framework of self-efficacy opportunities (SEOs). Considerable research has shown a connection between self-efficacy, or the confidence in one's own ability to perform a task, and success in science fields. Traditional methods of investigating the development of self-efficacy have required participants to recollect past events. This reliance on participant memory makes it difficult to understand what impact particular events may have on developing self-efficacy in the moment. We use video recordings of three undergraduate Modeling Instruction students solving a physics problem to characterize SEOs in a moment-by-moment analysis. We then validate these characterizations of the development of self-efficacy by reviewing the problem-solving session with the participants and find evidence that the SEOs identified are taken up and impact self-efficacy. This characterization and validation of SEOs in the moment represents a first step towards establishing a methodology for analyzing the development of self-efficacy in real time.

Physical Review Special Topics - Physics Education Research