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ERIC Number: ED523666
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 348
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1241-0757-8
Student Self-Efficacy and the Composition Classroom: Affecting Success through Self-Regulated Strategy Development (SRSD), Assessment, Assignments, and Teacher Practice
Dahlman, Jill
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Hawai'i at Manoa
For many students the first-year composition (FYC) classroom marks the beginning of college. The FYC instructor acts as a leader and a mentor for each student who is unique and approaches learning differently. The question is whether students enter the classroom prepared for the challenge of academic writing with a high sense of self-efficacy and strong internal locus of control (LOC), or whether they enter the classroom questioning their abilities and seeking reinforcement in an effort to build their self-efficacy. This study set out to determine what pedagogical techniques were most effective in the FYC classroom in raising student self-efficacy. In the beginning of the class, few survey participants indicated that they felt efficacious about their writing. At the end of the class, approximately 30% of the participants indicated that their self-efficacy had risen. Furthermore, the number of study participants who indicated that they felt unprepared to write papers for future classes was significant: less than 9% did not feel prepared for future college writing. The reason for the change in self-efficacy was a combination of a full-credit grading system, the type of assignment, and specific teacher practices. The idea that self-efficacy can be raised and an LOC shifted inward is significant since the students sitting in the composition classroom today are the same students who have endured the No Child Left Behind Act for most of their lives. These students are accustomed to assessment, testing, and teaching that speaks to the test rather than the quest of knowledge. This same teaching focuses on template writing (such as the five-paragraph essay) and writing to conform to "a standard." Many of these students seek a specific answer to questions that are fraught with possible answers, thus reducing critical thinking skills. They concentrate on the "right" answer instead of seeking to find multiple answers. They have been assimilated into the dominant way of thinking that this form of testing and questioning is "normal." Since these are the students in the college classrooms today, instructors need to concentrate on how to work with these students, and this study demonstrates ways of doing so. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001