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ERIC Number: EJ1116241
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Oct
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-1756-1108
Self-Efficacy and Academic Performance in First-Semester Organic Chemistry: Testing a Model of Reciprocal Causation
VillafaƱe, Sachel M.; Xu, Xiaoying; Raker, Jeffrey R.
Chemistry Education Research and Practice, v17 n4 p973-984 Oct 2016
Self-efficacy is an affective learning outcome that has been associated with academic performance and retention in STEM. Self-efficacy has been defined as students' beliefs about their ability to complete a given task, and it can be affected by a student's positive or negative experience in a course. In this study, students' chemistry self-efficacy in an organic chemistry course and its reciprocal causation relationship with performance in the course was examined using structural equation modeling (SEM). Organic chemistry self-efficacy (OCSE) was measured five times during the semester and students' scores in four term exams and a final exam were used as measures of performance. Five different models were proposed and tested to explain the relationship between OCSE and performance. A reciprocal causation model with an exam snowball effect was found to best explain the relationship between OCSE and performance compared to other alternative models including a reciprocal causation model without the snowball effect and an autoregressive model. This model suggests a significant positive relationship between OCSE and performance throughout the semester, providing empirical support for the reciprocal relationship of these two measures. Implications for research and instruction are discussed in terms of the reciprocal relationship between self-efficacy and performance.
Royal Society of Chemistry. Thomas Graham House, Science Park, Milton Road, Cambridge, CB4 0WF, UK. Tel: +44-1223 420066; Fax: +44-1223 423623; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: DUE1432085