Title page for ETD etd-0592073971961

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Mitton, Felicity L.
Author's Email Address felicity@vt.edu
URN etd-0592073971961
Title Self-efficacy: Judgments of Ability or Willingness?
Degree Master of Science
Department Clinical Psychology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Clum, George A. Jr.
Stephens, Robert S.
Sturgis, Ellie T.
  • college student drinking
  • self-efficacy
  • outcome expectancies
Date of Defense 1997-07-02
Availability unrestricted
The present studies attempted to clarify the constructs

of self-efficacy and outcome expectancies in relation

to college student drinking. In study 1, heavy-drinking

college students were asked for efficacy judgments for

limiting their heavy-drinking for increasing periods of

time (e.g. 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, etc.). Students

were also asked for efficacy judgments for throwing a

basketball into a hoop from increasing distances (e.g.

5 feet, 10 feet, 15 feet). Hypothetical incentives were

offered to change efficacy ratings for the first tasks on

each hierarchy (limiting drinking and basketball) to

which the participant had responded with a negative

efficacy judgments. Hypothetical incentives were also

offered for the most difficult task on each hierarchy.

As predicted, students changed efficacy ratings for

limiting drinking much more frequently. Additionally,

heavy-drinking college students indicated that money

persuaded them to alter their efficacy judgments for

limiting drinking, but lack of ability predominated as

the reason for not altering basketball task efficacy. In

study 2, the relationship between ability judgments,

willingness, and outcome expectancies was explored

by manipulating the wording of questionnaires

presented to heavy-drinking college students. Results

indicated that ability judgments were higher than

willingness judgments for limiting drinking. Willingness

appeared to be related to expected positive and

negative effects of consuming alcohol. Principle

components analysis indicated that ability and

willingness were distinct constructs. Results of both

studies are discussed in terms of the ongoing debate

between Albert Bandura and Irving Kirsch and the

need for a more clarity regarding efficacy and its


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