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General scientific definition

“People’s beliefs in their capabilities to produce desired effects by their actions.” (Bandura 1997, P. VII)

Relevant substantive theories

Social Cognitive theory (Bandura 1994)

(Self-determination Theory : 'feeling of competence')


  • Bandura, A. (1994). Self-efficacy. In V. S. Ramachaudran (Ed.), Encyclopedia of human behavior (Vol. 4, pp. 71-81). New York: Academic Press. (Reprinted in H. Friedman [Ed.], Encyclopedia of mental health. San Diego: Academic Press, 1998).

  • Bandura, A. (1997). Self-efficacy: The exercise of control. New York, NY, US: W H Freeman/Times Books/ Henry Holt & Co.


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