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J Adolesc. 2009 Aug;32(4):797-817. doi: 10.1016/j.adolescence.2008.10.009. Epub 2008 Nov 22.

Self-efficacy and academic achievement in Australian high school students: the mediating effects of academic aspirations and delinquency.

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The University of Queensland, School of Education, Brisbane, Australia.


Studies have shown that self-efficacy, aspirational, and other psychosocial influences account for considerable variance in academic achievement through a range of mediational pathways, although no research to date has tested the mediational relationships identified. The present research investigated the structural relations among self-efficacy, academic aspirations, and delinquency, on the academic achievement of 935 students aged 11-18 years from ten schools in two Australian cities. The Children's Self-Efficacy Scale, Adapted Self-Report Delinquency Scale (Revised), and Children's Academic Aspirations Scale were administered to participants prior to academic achievement being assessed using mid-year school grades. Structural equation modeling was employed to test three alternative models for the relationships from academic, social, and self-regulatory efficacy on academic achievement. A partial mediation model showed the best overall fit to the data. Academic and self-regulatory efficacy had an indirect negative effect through delinquency and a direct positive effect on academic achievement. Academic and social self-efficacy had positive and negative relationships, respectively, with academic aspiration and academic achievement; however, the relationship between academic aspiration and academic achievement was not significant in the final model.

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