Revisiting the Concept of Self-efficacy as a Language Learning Enhancer

  • Carol Andrea García Gutiérrez Universidad del Tolima
  • Norma Constanza Durán Narváez Universidad del Tolima
Keywords: Self- efficacy beliefs, Students’ reluctance, autobiographies, teachers’role, EFL context


Individuals’ self-efficacy beliefs determine the ways they perform in any domain, since they reflect the extent to which people feel capable to achieve certain accomplishments Bandura (1997). This paper describes how a group of intermediate school students’constant failure in the exams, demotivating attitudes, apathy and reluctance to learn English as a foreign language, relate with their perceived capability, self-perception and their prior experiences as language learners. This descriptive and exploratory case study was developed in a private language centre and involved 11 participants. The goal of the study was to understand the causes of the students’ demotivation and reluctance to the language. For this purpose, autobiographies become a springboard to examine students’ language learning experiences. This information was analysed based on the grounded theory approach proposed by Freeman(1998), and findings reveal that the inadequate teachers’ discourse, classroom environment, rapport and feedback strategies influenced students’ perceived capability to perform in the English class. In addition, the data showed that the supportive role of parents and relatives, encouraged learners to adopt a resilient attitude with respect to the difficulties while learning the language.


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Author Biographies

Carol Andrea García Gutiérrez, Universidad del Tolima

Carol Andrea García Gutierrez is enrolled in the English Didactics Master program at Universidad del Tolima, Colombia. In the last two years, she worked on a research study named: Exploring students’’ self-efficacy in the language learning process, from which the information discussed in the article is part. She has been a teacher for ten years and managed different types of audiences such as: children, intermediate school students and undergraduate learners. She has also worked in private schools, language learning centres and at the University of Tolima as well. She is currently teaching English in the Language Centre at Universidad Militar Nueva Granada, Colombia.

Norma Constanza Durán Narváez, Universidad del Tolima

Norma Constanza Durán Narváez hold an MA in Applied Linguistics to TEFL from Universidad Distrital Francisco José de Caldas and a Specialist in English Language Teaching from Universidad del Tolima (Colombia). Her research interests include teacher learning and professional development, cognition processes in teacher education and EFL teaching and learning processes. She is currently a full time teacher in the B.Ed in English program and part time teacher in the English Didactics Master Program at Universidad del Tolima, Colombia.


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How to Cite
García Gutiérrez, C., & Durán Narváez, N. (2018). Revisiting the Concept of Self-efficacy as a Language Learning Enhancer. GiST Education and Learning Research Journal, (15), 68-95.