Connecting Concepts of Self-Efficacy, Engaged Scholarship, and Civic Responsibility Among Student-Veterans

Connecting Concepts of Self-Efficacy, Engaged Scholarship, and Civic Responsibility Among Student-Veterans

Shaneen Dials-Corujo (Benedict College, USA)
Copyright: © 2018 |Pages: 19
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-3649-9.ch006
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An estimated 23 million veterans lived in the United States in 2013, when the U.S. spent approximately $99 billion on veterans' benefits, $4.4 billion of which funded education and vocational rehabilitation. This denotes increased presence of combat student-veterans in colleges, which signifies a growing need to understand their educational experiences. Research connects high self-efficacy and academic achievement. This study aimed for a deeper understanding of the educational experiences of combat student-veterans who had achieved academic degrees following deployment in Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF)/Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). Qualitative methodology was used as a source of in-depth exploration to identify conditions enhancing combat student-veterans' motivation in the college classroom. Using Yin's multiple-case-study research design, information was gathered from nine individual combat student-veteran perspectives. Findings indicated that mastery experience, vicarious experience and social persuasion were major sources of self-efficacy among student-veterans.
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Bandura (2000) asserted that behavioral, cognitive, and environmental factors operate according to a model of triadic reciprocity: they are determinants of one another. Bandura (1986) introduced the concept of self-efficacy as a component of the social cognitive theory. Self-efficacy has been defined as belief in one’s ability to achieve a given task (Bandura, 2000). According to Schunk (1995), self-efficacy influences an individual’s effort, persistence, and achievement. Understanding sources of self-efficacy is instrumental in comprehending student motivation and classroom performance.

Bandura (2000) identified four sources of self-efficacy: mastery experience, vicarious experience, social persuasion, and physiological reaction. The self-efficacy concept may apply to the combat student-veteran population, as it explains why some combat student-veterans are able to complete the academic process and attain degrees while others withdraw from the process.


Literature Review

Service members who participated in an active combat zone during Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF)/Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) present unique experiences to the academic environment (Holloway, 2009). These experiences include challenges to remain engaged in dialogue between the student-veteran and the faculty, as well as peer-to-peer engagement in the classroom (Kim & Cole, 2013). The combat student-veterans’ military and classroom environments, their post-combat behavior, and their personal characteristics tend to either foster or hinder academic achievement (Bandura, 2000; Fajarito, Dela Cruz, & De Guzma, 2017).

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