The Development of Student Self-efficacy through a Pre-university Program

By Deborah Delaney, Ruth McPhail, R Pentecost and Robin Roberts.

Published by The International Journal of Learning in Higher Education

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: March 14, 2016 $US5.00

For students commencing university study their first year can be a challenging and daunting experience. Self-efficacy, being the students’ own perception of themselves and their personal capabilities, is critical to a student’s ability to transition from high school to university (Bandura 1997; Bandura 1989). To address the need to improve students’ belief in their personal capabilities to transition successfully, a pre-university preparation (PUP) program was developed at an Australian university. This paper reports on the findings of the PUP experience, on students’ perceptions of the transition to university, and on the self-efficacy issues they identified. Students completed a survey at the commencement of the program and then provided qualitative feedback at the finish regarding how they anticipate the program will assist them in adjusting to university life. Data collected suggests that students who undertake this program have more realistic expectations of what university life will be like and feel better prepared to make the change from secondary school to the tertiary environment. We will argue that it is with a greater awareness of their capabilities supported by the PUP program that students will successfully transition to university.

Keywords: Self-efficacy, Pre-university Program, First-year Student Experience, Student Expectations

The International Journal of Learning in Higher Education, Volume 23, Issue 1, pp.41-52. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: March 14, 2016 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1001.531KB)).

Dr. Deborah Delaney

Lecturer, Department of Accounting, Finance and Economics, Griffith Business School, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia

Assoc. Prof. Ruth McPhail

Associate Professor, Griffith Business School, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia

Dr. R Pentecost

Lecturer, Griffith Business School, Griffith University, Logan, Queensland, Australia

Dr. Robin Roberts

Associate Professor, Griffith Business School, Griffith University, Nathan, Queensland, Australia