Date of Award
Certificate of Advanced Study
Dr. Mary Yakimowski
Students taking a foreign language in high schools generally are educated to be competent in the three modes of communication as defined by the American Council on Teaching of Foreign Languages. This study tool place in 9th and 10th grade foreign languages class in one, suburban school in Connecticut. At this school, some students enrolled live in that community, and some opt to attend that school rather than their neighborhood school through an inter-district program called Open-Choice (OC). All students in this school are asked to engage in a rigorous and challenging curriculum in order master these modes of communication. The ability of demonstrating a commitment of considerable effort in engaging in an activity and persevering even in the face of challenges is what Bandura (1977) named self-efficacy. Although self-efficacy is widely researched for high school students studying mathematics and English language arts, few studies have explored the self-efficacy in the field of foreign language in high school. This mixed method research collected results from a survey of 377 participants, conducted two focus groups with OC and non OC students and compiled responses from open-ended questions from teachers. The results of this study show that there is no statistical difference in self-efficacy between OC and Non OC students, that teacher involvement is determinant for sense of self-efficacy to grow in OC students and that there is a positive and strong correlation between self-efficacy and mastery goal orientation.
Brand, G. (2018). Language learning: A study of academic self-efficacy in a suburban high school. Unpublished Certificate of Advanced Study Thesis, Sacred Heart University, Fairfield, CT. Retrieved from http://digitalcommons.sacredheart.edu/edl/22
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