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Self-efficacy and perceived control: cognitive mediators of pain tolerance

Self-efficacy and perceived control: cognitive mediators of pain tolerance

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 54(1): 149-160

The cold-pressor task was used with 102 female undergraduates in 2 experiments to determine (a) whether self-efficacy has validity as a true causal determinant of behavior change or is a correlate of change that has already occurred and (b) how perceptions of control and self-efficacy interact to determine choice behavior, persistence, and the impact of an aversive stimulus. Results of Experiment 1 indicate that self-efficacy expectations affected performance beyond what would have been expected from past performance alone. Changes in self-efficacy expectations predicted changes in cold-pressor tolerance. These findings suggest that self-efficacy expectations can be causal determinants of behavior in an aversive situation. Results of Experiment 2 indicate that self-efficacy was separable from control and that performance was best if both high levels of perceived control and self-efficacy were present. These findings support the notion that self-efficacy expectations can mediate the desirability of providing control, in that those who benefit most from control are those who are most confident they can exercise it.

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Accession: 041326423

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 3346804

DOI: 10.1037/0022-3514.54.1.149

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