Sources of Self-efficacy in an Undergraduate Introductory Astronomy Course for Non-science Majors
McGinnis, James R
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The role of the astronomy laboratory on non-science major student self-efficacy is investigated through combining quantitative and qualitative methodologies. The Astronomy Diagnostic Test 2.0 is distributed to an introductory astronomy laboratory for non-science major class in the Spring of 2005. The ADT 2.0 is used to draw comparisons between interview subjects and the remaining class. Eight subjects were interviewed three times throughout the semester in order to determine the important contributing factors to the subjects' self-efficacy beliefs. Results of the quantitative data suggest that the interview participants' general science self-efficacy did not significantly increase over the course of the semester. Results of the quantitative data suggest the most important contributor to the subjects' self-efficacy in the laboratory is verbal persuasion. The results of this limited study suggest that the astronomy laboratory experience is a strong contributor to student self-efficacy beliefs.