THE SELF-EFFICACY OF INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERS IN UiTM FOUNDATION CENTRE, DENGKIL, SELANGOR, MALAYSIANURHAMIZAH ISHAK * LEELE SUSANA JAMIANFaculty of Education, Universiti Teknologi MARA,40200 Shah Alam, MalaysiaAbstract: This study looks at the level of self-efficacy among instructional leaders of UiTM Foundation Centre, Dengkil, Selangor, Malaysia. Data was collected through a questionnaire on the sample of 86 lecturers. It was found that the sample have high overall self-efficacy level.
They also scored high self-efficacy level in all three main dimensions that were measured such as teaching, research and other academic or service-related activities. Besides, there were significant differences between self-efficacy and demographic variables such as gender, academic qualifications, departments and length of service. As for the implications of this study, it contributes to the corpus of knowledge in the area of self-efficacy in local context and provides empirical data to assist Ministry of Higher Education in conducting strategic planning to enhance self-efficacy amongst instructional leaders in institutions of higher educations (IHE).Keywords: Self-Efficacy Instructional Leaders Higher Education Institutions1.0 Introduction For the past decade, Malaysia was aiming to be a hub of higher educational excellence in the region. To support the aim, “Strategic Plan for Higher Education: Laying the Foundation Beyond 2020” (Ministry of Higher Education, 2007) that outlines the measures and strategies was launched in 2007.
Under this plan, instructional leaders comprising of lecturers, administrators and managers in IHE were incorporated as the main driving force to execute the strategies. This later leads universities to place more stringent requirements in recruiting new instructional leaders as compared to before. Furthermore, this is evidenced in the National Higher Education Blueprint 2015-2025 via Shift 2: Talent Excellence that addresses this matter in detail. It emphasizes the critical needs of recruiting, producing and retaining excellent instructional leaders to ensure the competitiveness and relevance of the higher education institutions in Malaysia.
Sampson et al. (2010) also once stated instructional leaders’ performance as the most crucial input in the growth and development of the higher education sector. This is due to the fact that instructional leaders are expected to fill in many roles in their daily tasks. These roles may include teaching, assessing, planning curriculum, providing information, researching, facilitating, supervising, consulting, attending seminars, engaging in community service activities, developing and managing courses, organizing events and activities, industrial liaison and many other roles (Haryani, Sharifah ; Rose, 2010). Bright (2012) observed that for many instructional leaders, such workload demand can be overwhelming.
Therefore, to facilitate the instructional leader’s workload, it seems that self-efficacy attribute is highly crucial. With high self-efficacy level, many researchers are of the opinion that it would contribute to the high accomplishment of various job performances. This is especially true for professions that heavily involve interactions with other people such as doctors, nurses, teachers, lecturers and salesman. When they are confident with their skills and abilities, they are able to perform their work efficiently in various kinds of situations especially when dealing with difficult people. Self-efficacy is one of the key aspects of Bandura’s social cognitive theory that has been linked and contributed to high job performance. Bandura (1997) defined self-efficacy as peoples’ belief about their capability to produce designated levels of performance in various life events such as academic performance and job performance. Norton (2013) also stated that self-efficacy determines how much of an effort people make and how long they keep at a task despite obstacles or adverse experiences. Meanwhile, Virk and Malhotra (2016) perceived self-efficacy as a productive power by which cognitive, social, emotional and behavioural skills are organized effectively to achieve goals.
Later, these scholars further elaborated that in the context of employee, those who have strong sense of work self-efficacy are confident in carrying out their job specifications and exert greater effort to master the skills that they are lacking at which subsequently produce splendid job performance.In Malaysia, most local researches on self-efficacy involved teachers in school setting. They were Berg & Smith, 2014; Rahimah et al., 2014; Noor Syamilah and Shamsiah, 2011; Masitah et al., 2009. To date, only three published research on self-efficacy amongst local instructional leaders could be found: Wan Nooraini & Mohamed Sani’s (2010) study on polytechnic lecturer, Chakravarthi, Haleagrahara ; Judson’s (2010) study on lecturers of a private medical university in Kuala Lumpur, and Roziana, Siti Aisyah & Azizah’s (2014) study on public universities lecturers. Hence, this research intends to identify and examine the level of self-efficacy among instructional leaders of UiTM Foundation Centre, Dengkil, Selangor.2.
0 Literature Review2.1 Self-Efficacy TheorySelf-Efficacy was first developed by Albert Bandura as part of a larger theory, the Social Learning Theory which has progressed into the Social Cognitive Theory (Ashford ; LeCroy, 2010). Self-efficacy are an important aspect of human motivation and behavior due to its influence towards the actions that later may affect one’s life. Bandura (1995) defined self-efficacy beliefs as one’s capabilities to organize and execute the courses of action required to manage prospective situations. Simply put, self-efficacy is what an individual believes he or she can accomplish using his or her skills under certain circumstances (Snyder ; Lopez, 2007). In other words, self-efficacy is a task-specific version of self-esteem (Lunenburg, 2011). The basic principle behind self-efficacy theory is that individuals are more likely to engage in activities for which they have high self-efficacy and less likely to engage in those they do not (Van der Bijl ; Shortridge-Baggett, 2002). According to Gecas (2004), people behave in the way that executes their initial beliefs; thus, self-efficacy functions as a self-fulfilling prophecy.
For example, Employee A has high ability and a great deal of experience in creating graphs, but does not have confidence that he can create a high quality graph for an important conference (Redmond, 2010). Employee B has only average ability and only a small amount of experience in creating graphs, yet has great confidence that she can work hard to create a high quality graph for the same conference. Because of Employee A’s low self-efficacy for graph creation, he lacks the motivation to create one for the conference and tells his supervisor he cannot complete the task. Employee B, due to her high self-efficacy, is highly motivated, works overtime to learn how to create a high quality graph, presents it during the conference, and earns a promotion (Redmond, 2010).Self-efficacy also has influenced over people’s ability to learn, their motivation and their performance, as people will often attempt to learn and perform only those task for which they believe they will be successful (Lunenburg, 2011).
Indeed, performance and motivation are in part determined by how effective people believe they can be (Bandura, 1982; Redmond, 2010) as illustrated in the following quote by Mahatma Gandhi: “If I have the belief that I can do it, I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it even if I may not have it at the beginning”.2.2 Measurement Scales of Self-EfficacyJudgments of self-efficacy are generally measured along three basic scales: magnitude, strength, and generality. Self-efficacy magnitude measures the difficulty level (e.g. easy, moderate, and hard) an individual feels is required to perform a certain task (Van der Bijl ; Shortridge-Baggett, 2002). Meanwhile, self-efficacy strength refers to the amount of conviction an individual has about performing successfully at diverse levels of difficulty (Van der Bijl ; Shortridge-Baggett, 2002).
As for generality of self-efficacy, it refers to the “degree to which the expectation is generalized across situations (Lunenburg, 2011). In this study, the self-efficacy scale used is strength as it aims to investigate the frequency of self-efficacy amongst the instructional leaders of UiTM Foundation Centre. This means that certain lecturers may hold strong efficacy beliefs for some tasks and weak efficacy beliefs for others.2.3 Major Sources of Self-EfficacyBandura (1977) outlined four sources of information that individuals employ to judge their efficacy: performance outcomes (performance accomplishments), vicarious experiences, verbal persuasion, and physiological feedback (emotional arousal). These components help individuals determine if they believe they have the capability to accomplish specific tasks.
First source of self-efficacy is performance outcomes. According to Bandura (1994), performance outcomes or past experiences, are the most important source of self-efficacy. Positive and negative experiences can influence the ability of an individual to perform a given task (Rabideau, 2005).
If one has performed well at a task previously, he or she is more likely to feel competent and perform well at a similarly associated task (Bandura, 1977). For example, if one performed well in a previous job assignment, then they are more likely to feel confident and have high self-efficacy in performing the task when their manager assigns them a similar task (Redmond, 2010). The individual’s self-efficacy will be high in that particular area, and since he or she has a high self-efficacy, he or she is more likely to try harder and complete the task with much better results.
The opposite is also true, where if an individual experiences a failure, they will most likely experience a reduction in self-efficacy. However, if these failures are later overcome by conviction, it can serve to increase self-motivated persistence when the situation is viewed as an achievable challenge (Bandura, 1994). Mastery experiences are the most influential source of efficacy information because they provide the most authentic evidence of whether one can muster whatever it takes to succeed. Success builds a robust belief in one’s personal efficacy.
Failures undermine it, especially if failures occur before a sense of efficacy is firmly established (Bandura, 1997).Second source of self-efficacy is vicarious experiences: People can develop high or low self-efficacy vicariously through other people’s performances. A person can watch another perform and then compare his own competence with the other individual’s competence (Bandura, 1994). If a person sees someone similar to them succeed, it can increase their self-efficacy. However, the opposite is also true; seeing someone similar fail can lower self-efficacy. An example of how vicarious experiences can increase self-efficacy in the work place is through mentoring programs, where one individual is paired with someone on a similar career path who will be successful at raising the individual’s self-efficacy beliefs (Redmond, 2010). This is even further strengthened if both have a similar skill set, so a person can see first-hand what they may achieve.
Example of how the opposite can be true is in a smoking cessation program, where, if individuals witness several people fail to quit, they may worry about their own chances of success, leading to low self-efficacy for quitting, or a weight-loss program where others do not achieve the results you are hoping for (Redmond, 2010).Third source of self-efficacy is verbal persuasion. According to Redmond (2010), self-efficacy is also influenced by encouragement and discouragement pertaining to an individual’s performance or ability to perform, such as a manager telling an employee: “You can do it. I have confidence in you.” Using verbal persuasion in a positive light generally leads individuals to put forth more effort; therefore, they have a greater chance at succeeding. However, if the verbal persuasion is negative, such as a manager saying to the employee, “This is unacceptable! I thought you could handle this project” can lead to doubts about oneself resulting in lower chances of success (Redmond, 2010). Also, the level of credibility directly influences the effectiveness of verbal persuasion; where there is more credibility, there will be a greater influence (Bandura, 1994).
For example, a pep talk by a manager who has an established, respectable position would have a stronger influence than that of a newly hired manager. Although verbal persuasion is also likely to be a weaker source of self-efficacy beliefs than performance outcomes, it is widely used because of its ease and ready availability (Redmond, 2010). Verbal persuasion can be used by showing praise for a job well done or by giving positive feedback on a specific task. Verbal persuasion can be used at any time and requires almost no effort.
Fourth and the last source of self-efficacy is physiological feedback. People experience sensations from their body and how they perceive this emotional arousal influences their beliefs of efficacy (Bandura, 1994). Some examples of physiological feedback are: giving a speech in front of a large group of people, making a presentation to an important client, taking an exam, etc. All of these tasks can cause agitation, anxiety, sweaty palms, and/or a racing heart (Redmond, 2010). Although this source is the least influential of the four, it is important to note that if one is more at ease with the task at hand they will feel more capable and have higher beliefs of self-efficacy.
8826503175000 Figure 2.1: Sources of self-efficacy2.4 Significance of Self-Efficacy Self-efficacy is significant towards human behaviour. It has been claimed that people’s level of self-efficacy affects their performances. In line with this, people generally avoid tasks where their self-efficacy is low, but will engage in tasks where their self-efficacy is high (Minniti, 2009).Individuals with lower self-efficacy tend to have lower aspirations and a weaker commitment to the goals they choose to pursue. They do not concentrate on how to perform well (Bandura, 1994). Instead they spend much of their energy on focusing on limitations and failures.
They see difficult tasks as a personal threat and will avoid attempts to conquer them. Later, when they faced unavoidable demanding tasks, they are beleaguered by their personal deficiencies, the obstacles they might confronted and all kinds of adverse outcomes that they might encounter rather than concentrating on how to perform successfully (Bandura, 1994). They slacken their efforts and quickly give up in the face of difficulties. They are slower to recover their sense of efficacy following failure or setbacks because they perceive their insufficient performance as an expression of their insufficient capabilities. This sense of helplessness and hopelessness about their ability subsequently fosters stress and depression amongst those with lower self-efficacy (Heslin & Klehe, 2006; Pajares & Schunk, 2001). On the contrary, people with high efficacy beliefs may approach difficult tasks as challenges to be mastered rather than reckon all the limitations. They set themselves perfectly challenging goals and maintain strong commitment to accomplish them (Bandura, 1994). They sustain their efforts in the face of failure or setbacks, and they attribute failure to insufficient effort or deficient knowledge and skills that are achievable.
In other words, they quickly recover their sense of efficacy after failures or setbacks with assurance that they can exercise control over them (Bandura, 1994). As Schunk, Meece and Pintrich (2014) discovered, those with higher levels of self-efficacy when faced with unresolved issues, will exhibit greater stability. People with a positive efficacious outlook produce personal accomplishments which, in turn, can reduce stress and lower depression (Pajares & Schunk, 2001).
To conclude, the fact that someone has high self-efficacy and has done their best with enthusiasm does not mean that they will always be successful. They may fail, but people with high self-efficacy do not feel the need to hide behind external factors like the physical conditions in a setting or the fact that they have shortcomings as people with low self-efficacy do. Instead, they think they should work harder for success and strive to gain control over “potential stressors or threats” (Bandura, 1997: 39). These qualities of people with high self-efficacy separate them from people with low self-efficacy, which subsequently helping them perform well.2.
5 General and Specific Self-EfficacySelf-efficacy is both general and domain specific (Schwarzer, 2009). General self-efficacy is a cognitive evaluation of one’s general ability to persist in adverse situations (Lightsey et al., 2006).
A person with a high level of general self-efficacy believes that they will succeed in difficult circumstances, and that they will overcome challenging obstacles. In short, general self-efficacy is a broad measure of perceived self-efficacy (Scholz et al., 2002). However, when a person is exposed to a novel task or a novel domain his or her self-efficacy may be significantly different than what it generally is.
That person may actually have low self-efficacy for the task at hand as intuitively, self-efficacy cannot be the same for every event or every situation. Since perceived capability varies across domains, self-efficacy is best measured at the task specific level (Bandura, 1997). There are numerous specific self-efficacy scales such as health self-efficacy (Schwarzer & Renner, 2009), computer use self-efficacy (Chu et al., 2009), writing self-efficacy (Margolis & McCabe, 2006), reading self-efficacy (Durik et al., 2006), and even self-efficacy for eating fruits and vegetables (Mainvil et al., 2009).
2.6 Lecturers’ Self-EfficacyAccording to Bandura (1997), having the knowledge and skills required to act does not guarantee that an actor will perform effectively, but rather, effective action also depends upon the personal judgment for properly utilizing such knowledge and skills to perform an act successfully under various circumstances (Maddux & Gosselin, 2003). Bandura (1997) named this judgment as perceived self-efficacy and when applied to lecturer profession, it takes the form of lecturers’ self-efficacy. Major and Dolly (2003) stated that lecturers’ self-efficacy refers to the way that faculty members see themselves as teachers, researchers, and academic citizens as well as their beliefs about whether they can successfully complete tasks in each of these areas. In line with the definition, lecturers’ self-efficacy construct is comprised of 1) self-efficacy in teaching, 2) self-efficacy in research and 3) self-efficacy in other academic or service related activities (Hemmings & Kay, 2009). As the sample of this study comprised of instructional leaders who are lecturers, hence, the above lecturer’s self-efficacy construct by Hemmings & Kay (2009) was used in measuring self-efficacy level of instructional leaders in the study.
3.0 Method3.1 Population and sampleThe target population for this study was chosen amongst instructional leaders of UiTM Foundation Centre, Dengkil, Selangor. As UiTM Foundation Centre is the sole campus of UiTM that offers Foundation Education and due to its quite small population size, all 140 instructional leaders who currently serving in UiTM Foundation Centre, Dengkil, Selangor were selected as the sample size of this study. Nevertheless, after two weeks of data collection process, only 86 out of 140 instructional leaders responded to the questionnaires.
These instructional leaders served in six different departments: Science, Engineering, Education, Law, Academy of Islamic Studies (ACIS) and Academy of Language Studies (APB).3.2 InstrumentationQuestionnaire was the main instrument used to collect data in this study. The questionnaire was divided into two sections: Sections A and B with a total of 73 items.Table 3.1 Division of items in the questionnaireSection Number of itemsSection A 4Section B 69Total items 73Section A : Demographic DataSection A focused on the demographic data of the instructional leaders. It consisted of four items regarding gender, academic qualification, course taught and length of service.
The respondents were required to tick the demographic information in the relevant boxes provided.Section B: Self-EfficacySection B focused on self-efficacy variable. The items in this section were adapted from Lecturer Self-Efficacy Questionnaire by Hemmings and Kay (2009).
The original instrument consisted of 65 items concerning lecturers’ self-efficacy. However, after the items were extensively revised, rephrased and restructured in terms of the sentence structures and vocabulary as well as upon the items underwent pilot test; this section consisted of 69 items. The reason for the increasing number of items was because three items were found to be double-barrelled and were later split into six items while one new item was added to strengthen the findings of the lecturers’ self-efficacy.The modifications on items were done in order to suit the job specifications of local lecturers, to ensure the clarity and comprehensibility of these items for the lecturers as well as to guarantee that these items gave accurate reflection of the lecturers’ self-efficacy. These items attempted to assess seven dimensions of self-efficacy: 1) course content, instructions and assessment, 2) tutorials and lectures, 3) reporting and supervising research, 4) conducting and managing research, 5) writing major works and reviewing research, 6) professional engagement activities and 7) internal executive tasks (refer Table 3.
2).Table 3.2Self-Efficacy dimensionsNo. Items Dimensions No. of items Format 1 C1-C13 Course content, instructions and assessment 13 6-point Likert Scale2 C14-C22 Tutorials and lectures 9 6-point Likert Scale3 C23-C31 Reporting and supervising research 9 6-point Likert Scale4 C32-C43 Conducting and managing research 12 6-point Likert Scale5 C44-C53 Writing major works and reviewing research 10 6-point Likert Scale6 C54-C61 Professional engagement activities 8 6-point Likert Scale7 C62-C69 Internal executive tasks 8 6-point Likert ScaleTotal 69 Overall, there were 69 6-point Likert scale items in this section. The respondents responded to the items by circling the scale that accurately described them according to the following nature “1 = Not very confident”, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident and 6 = Very confident”.3.3 Data Collection ProcedureThe researcher first acquired the endorsement letter to conduct research from the Faculty of Education.
Next, the researcher asked permission from the Vice Dean of Academic Affairs (HEA) of UiTM Foundation Centre, Dengkil, Selangor, to administer the instrument. Upon receiving the permission, the researcher distributed 140 sets of questionnaires to the respondents by hand. Later, the researchers briefed the respondents about the instructions and items in the questionnaire as well as assured them about the confidentiality of the data gathered.
They were also asked to answer the questionnaire within a period of two weeks.To facilitate the data collection process, the respondents were provided with an envelope each for them to put in the completed questionnaire and later put the envelope consisted of the completed questionnaire in their timetable holder. The rationale behind the two weeks deadline was due to consideration that respondents were busy juggling their teaching, research and other academic or service related tasks from time to time. Plus, sometimes they were not in the UiTM Foundation Centre, Dengkil, Selangor during the whole working hours as certain lecturers were assigned with teaching duties in other UiTM branch campuses such as UiTM Puncak Alam and UiTM Shah Alam. Hence, to ensure that all respondents have plenty of time to answer the questionnaire, two weeks deadline was deemed reasonable.Besides, to guarantee that the respondents were returning the fully completed questionnaire within the deadline, the researcher walked around each level of lecturers’ room every day within the two weeks deadline and collected the completed questionnaire by hand. The response rate was 61.
4% as only 86 completed questionnaires out of 140 distributed questionnaires were successfully received by the researcher at the end of the two weeks deadline. Meanwhile, the average time taken by lecturers to complete the questionnaire was approximately five minutes.3.
4 Data Analysis ProcedureThe completed questionnaires were analysed using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences software (SPSS version 22). Thus, in order to assist the interpretation of quantitative data, findings on the interval six-point Likert scale of the self-efficacy was collapsed into high and low self-efficacy. Figure 3.1 display the summary of the categories.
6350007556500249237520447000 NVC3.5 VC930275113030404812511303034321751193800277177511938021621751193801539875119380 9302752540000 1 2 3 4 5 6 Low High *1= Not very confident, 2= Moderately not confident, 3= Slightly not confident, 4= Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confident Figure 3.1: The six-point Likert scale of the self-efficacyData which were rated as “1 = Not very confident”, 2 = Moderately not confident” with the mean score of 1.00 to 3.49 were regarded as low self-efficacy while data which were rated as “4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident and 6 = Very confident” with the mean score of 3.50 to 6.00 were categorized as high self-efficacy.Next, independent sample t-test and One-way Anova test were also employed.
Independent sample t-test is a method used in determining if there exists a significant difference in means between two independent groups or related groups (Singh, Puzziawati & Teoh, 2009). Meanwhile, One-way Anova test is a method used in determining if there exists a significant difference in the comparisons of means among three or more independent groups in the sample (Singh, Puzziawati & Teoh, 2009). In the context of this study, these tests were conducted to find out whether there were significant differences between self-efficacy of the respondents with their demographic profile that consists of gender, academic qualifications, department and length of service.4.0 Findings and discussion4.1 Quantitative findings of self-efficacyRQ 1: What is the mean score of self-efficacy amongst the instructional leaders of UiTM Foundation Centre, Dengkil, Selangor?Both mean score and standard deviation were employed in order to analyse findings on self-efficacy amongst the respondents.Table 4.1Overall mean score of Self-EfficacyVariable N Mean SD LevelSelf-efficacy 86 5.
18 4.81 High*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confidentTable 4.1 illustrates the overall mean score (M=5.18, SD=.481) of self-efficacy amongst the instructional leaders of UiTM Foundation Centre, Dengkil, Selangor. In general, the findings revealed that self-efficacy level was rated high amongst the respondents. This is further supported by similar finding of high self-efficacy level amongst lecturers at the higher education institution in United Kingdom by Sharp et al. (2013).
Table 4.2Mean scores of Self-Efficacy according to its dimensionsDimensions N Mean SD LevelTeaching 86 5.45 .423 HighResearch 86 4.
98 .619 HighOther academic or service-related activities 86 5.12 .
545 HighOverall Total Mean Score 86 5.18 .481 High*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confidentAs seen in Table 4.2, the respondents generally agreed that they had high level of self-efficacy in teaching, research and other academic or service-related activities.
The mean scores ranged from 4.98 to 5.45. The highest mean score was obtained from teaching dimensions (M=5.45, SD=.423).
This was followed by other academic or service-related activities dimensions (M=5.12, SD=.545) and research dimensions (M=4.98, SD=.619) respectively.
As the main responsibility of the instruction leaders’ profession is teaching tasks, more than half of their working time is allocated for these tasks. Thus, it is possible that instructional leaders are very confident in executing teaching tasks (Graham, 2015). In addition, instructional leaders might be confident in contributing regularly to the betterment of the society from time to time through academic or service-related activities such as written opinion, giving professional talk and conducting collaboration with the industry (Abdullah et al., 2011). Lastly, instructional leaders probably are confident in conducting research as they are required to produce high impact research to expand the corpus of knowledge of the subject matters that they are expert in from time to time (Jongbloed, Enders ; Salerno, 2008).
Table 4.3Mean scores of Self-Efficacy in teaching dimensionsTeaching dimensions N Mean SD LevelDimension 1: Course content, instruction and assessment 86 5.43 .
471 HighDimension 2: Tutorial and lecture 86 5.46 .437 HighOverall Total Mean Score 86 5.45 .423 High*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confident In view of self-efficacy in teaching dimensions, instructional leaders perceived themselves as having higher self-efficacy in the tutorial and lecture dimension (M=5.
46, SD= .437) rather than in course content, instruction and assessment dimension (M=5.43, SD=.471) (refer Table 4.3). This could be attributed to the findings that most instructional leaders in this study were established and advanced lecturer. Hence, they are experienced in conducting tutorial and lecture.
Moreover, Fry, Kettridge ; Marshall (2008) stated that despite having specific content and objectives to be achieved in each course, instructional leaders usually have full autonomy regarding their ways to execute the content in their tutorials and lectures according to the students’ needs and competency. Subsequently, this autonomy might boost the instructional leaders’ confidence in conducting tutorial and lecture. Yet, the situation differs for course content, instruction and assessment matters as the instructional leaders tend to have restricted personal freedom (refer Table 4.3). Race (2013) stated that instructional leaders need to be open to suggestions and ideas given by their colleagues as well as aware and ready to comply with the aspirations of the course coordinator, dean and academic affairs department of the university regarding these matters. Subsequently, the restricted freedom and the complexity of these tasks that involve many individuals might lessen the instructional leaders’ confidence in executing these tasks.Table 4.
4Mean scores of Self-Efficacy in teaching for Dimension 1: Course content, instruction and assessmentSection B: ItemsIndicate how confident you are in the areas below: N Mean SDB1 consulting students on academic matters 86 5.63 .486B5 marking test/exam papers 86 5.
58 .541B4 marking assignments 86 5.57 .
564B2 setting assignments 86 5.55 .567B8 providing feedback on assessment items 86 5.53 .547B9 responding to student feedback regarding the courses 86 5.52 .646B7 assigning grades 86 5.48 .
608B11 consulting with colleagues about coursework 86 5.48 .547B3 preparing test/exam papers 86 5.47 .588B6 assessing students’ skills/knowledge in the area.
86 5.43 .624B12 leading subjects/modules 86 5.22 .693B10 developing subjects/modules 86 5.15 .712B13 leading teams/wider academic coordination 86 5.
05 .701Total Mean Score 86 5.43 .471*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confidentTable 4.4 shows the mean scores of self-efficacy for individual items under the course content, instruction and assessment dimension.
Generally, among the thirteen items, the mean scores ranged from 5.05 to 5.63. Most instructional leaders regarded themselves as confident in consulting students on academic matters as well as in marking test, exam papers and assignments (M=5.63, SD=.
486)(refer Table 4.4). It is possible that the instructional leaders are already familiar with the subject matter; hence, they are able to cope with any questions related to the subject matter asked by the students during the consultations (Biggs, 2011). Meanwhile, least instructional leaders regarded themselves as confident in leading teams in widening academic coordination (M=5.05, SD=.701) (refer Table 4.4).
Kennedy ; Nilson (2008) stated that other than knowledge on subject matters, academic coordination will only be successful if there is good communication and cooperation amongst team members. Therefore, an instructional leader must have good leadership skills to handle this matter successfully. In view of this, it is possible that the instructional leaders in the study feel that they do not have adequate leadership and communication skills to tackle this task.
Table 4.5Mean scores of Self-Efficacy in teaching for Dimension 2: Tutorial and lectureSection B: ItemsIndicate how confident you are in the areas below: N Mean SDB15 delivering tutorials/lectures 86 5.66 .523B14 preparing tutorials/lectures 86 5.65 .526B22 facilitating student discussions in class 86 5.64 .592B17 preparing handouts86 5.
49 .609B21 revising lecture materials 86 5.49 .
589B20 keeping up to date with lecture materials 86 5.33 .583B18 assigning reading materials 86 5.
30 .670B19 revising teaching strategies 86 5.30 .670B16 using e-learning and ICT during tutorials/lectures 86 5.26 .617Total Mean Score 86 5.
46 .437*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confidentTable 4.5 displays the mean scores of self-efficacy in teaching for individual items under the tutorial and lecture dimension. Generally, among the nine items, the mean scores ranged from 5.26 to 5.66. Majority of the instructional leaders reported that they were confident in delivering and preparing tutorials and lectures as well as in facilitating students’ discussion in class (M=5.
66, SD=.523) (refer Table 4.5). Fry, Kettridge & Marshall (2008) stated that instructional leaders tend to be more confident in delivering tutorial and lecture as they usually are familiar with the subject matter. Besides, instructional leaders often do thorough preparation and planning on what to teach prior entering the classes and lecture halls which eventually enable them to facilitate students’ discussion (Race, 2013).
Meanwhile, little instructional leaders reported that they were confident in using e-learning and ICT during tutorials and lectures (M=5.26, SD=.617) (refer Table 4.5).
As the students that they teach nowadays are digital native and internet savvy, instructional leaders probably feel reluctant to apply it for the fear of embarrassing themselves in front of the students due to their lacking skills in this area (Ocak, 2011). Table 4.6Mean scores of Self-Efficacy in research dimensionsResearch dimensions N Mean SD LevelDimension 3: Reporting and supervising research 86 5.05 .715 HighDimension 4: Conducting and managing research 86 4.
98 .638 HighDimension 5: Writing major works and reviewing assessment 86 4.91 .588 HighOverall Total Mean Score 86 4.98 .619 High*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confidentIn view of self-efficacy in research dimension, instructional leaders reported high self-efficacy in all three dimensions with the highest mean score was obtained from reporting and supervising research (M=5.
05, SD=.715) which followed by conducting and managing research dimension (M=4.98, SD=.638) and writing major works and reviewing research dimension respectively (M=4.
91, SD=.588)(refer Table 4.6). Hill (2011) stated that most instructional leaders tend to be confident in reporting and supervising research as prior researches that they have supervised usually are related to their expertise area.
Meanwhile, in terms of conducting and managing research, instructional leaders generally have adequate research knowledge and skills that enable them to run their own research properly (Hemmings ; Hill, 2009). As for writing major works and reviewing research, instructional leaders possibly feel less confident in executing these tasks due to time constraint that hamper lecturers from writing academic piece and reviewing research constantly (Hemmings ; Kay, 2010). Table 4.7Mean scores of Self-Efficacy in research for Dimension 3: Reporting and supervising researchSection B: ItemsIndicate how confident you are in the areas below: N Mean SDB28 supervising students’ research project 86 5.19 .775B23 attending conference 86 5.
15 .819B27 delivering research findings in staff seminars 86 5.08 .843B25 presenting conference papers 86 5.06 .
817B31 preparing research write-up/report 86 5.02 .782B24 preparing conference papers 86 5.01 .833B30 submitting papers for publication 86 5.01 .819B26 presenting papers in other departments/institutions 86 5.00 .
812B29 supervising postgraduate students 86 4.88 .788Total Mean Score 86 5.
05 .715*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confidentTable 4.7 presents the mean scores of self-efficacy in research for individual items under the reporting and supervising research dimension. Generally, among the nine items, the mean scores ranged from 4.88 to 5.19.
Most instructional leaders in this study reported that they were confident in supervising foundation and undergraduate students’ research projects (M=5.19, SD=.775) (refer Table 4.7). It is possibly due to the fact that instructional leaders are usually assigned with supervisees whose researches are within their expertise area (Hill, 2011). Yet, least instructional leaders reported that they were confident in supervising postgraduate students (M=4.88, SD=.788) (refer Table 4.
7). Blitzer (2011) stated that as postgraduate students comprised of those studying for Masters and PhD degrees; their dissertation projects are of higher level than the usual research projects done by the Foundation students that these lecturers tend to monitor. As most of the instructional leaders in this study comprise of either those who recently gained their PhD or those who recently starting their PhD journey, they might feel overwhelmed with the responsibility and eventually have low confidence in supervising postgraduate students. Table 4.8Mean scores of Self-Efficacy in research for Dimension 4: Conducting and managing researchSection B: ItemsIndicate how confident you are in the areas below: N Mean SDB42 collaborating with colleagues about research 86 5.17 .726B38 collecting data 86 5.
14 .754B43 working with research assistants 86 5.13 .779B32 generating research ideas 86 5.06 .802B37 conforming to research ethics requirement 86 5.
05 .810B40 analysing research results 86 5.03 .710B41 leading research projects 86 5.00 .812B36 conducting pilot studies 86 4.88 .
803B33 designing research 86 4.88 .758B39 using software to key-in data 86 4.
88 .758B35 preparing a research budget 86 4.81 .775B34 applying for research grants 86 4.79 .738Total Mean Score 86 4.98 .638*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confidentTable 4.
8 shows the mean scores of self-efficacy in research for individual items under the conducting and managing research dimension. Generally, among the twelve items, the mean scores ranged from 4.79 to 5.17. Majority of the instructional leaders in this study reported that they were confident in collaborating with colleagues about research (M=5.
17, SD=.726) (refer Table 4.8). According to Hemmings and Hill (2009), instructional leaders perceived that sharing and exchange of research knowledge and skills during the research collaboration will produce a more efficient and detailed research. Nevertheless, little instructional leaders reported that they were confident in applying for research grants (M=4.79, SD=.
738) (refer Table 4.8). Bozeman (2015) mentioned that as the application for research grants usually involves lots of procedures and bureaucracy, certain instructional leaders prefer not to deal with it. In addition, the success of obtaining the research grants is highly determined by the impact of the research: the higher the impact of the research, the higher the chance that it will be selected (Hemmings ; Kay, 2010; Bloch, Graversen ; Padersen, 2014). Table 4.9Mean scores of Self-Efficacy in research for Dimension 5: Writing major works and reviewing assessmentSection B: ItemsIndicate how confident you are in the areas below: N Mean SDB53 reviewing literature for a research project 86 5.
21 .738B52 keeping up to date with research literature 86 5.06 .802B47 writing journal articles 86 5.06 .772B44 writing for an academic audience 86 4.95 .750B46 writing textbooks 86 4.
87 .764B51 examining theses (Degree, Master, PhD) 86 4.85 .
728B48 editing a journal 86 4.80 .647B50 reviewing journal articles 86 4.
79 .671B45 writing research-based books 86 4.78 .726B49 serving on editorial board 86 4.67 .
583Total Mean Score 86 4.91 .588*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confidentTable 4.
9 displays the mean scores of self-efficacy in research for individual items under the writing major works and reviewing research dimension. Generally, among the ten items, the mean scores ranged from 4.67 to 5.21. Most instructional leaders reported that they were confident in reviewing literature for research project and in keeping up to date with research literature (M=5.
21, SD=.738) (refer Table 4.9). Furthermore, Hemmings and Hill (2009) mentioned that instructional leaders are bound to read latest information on the subject matter that they teach.
Hence, these information are usually helpful while they are writing literature review for their research project. Meanwhile, least instructional leaders reported that they were confident in serving on editorial board (M=4.67, SD=.583) (refer Table 4.9).
This might be due to the nature of this task that requires one to be as meticulous as possible and unbiased while selecting and editing journal articles to be published (Hemmings ; Kay, 2010). Besides, most of the instructional leaders in this study were inexperienced researchers. Hence, they feel that their research knowledge and experience are still inadequate to edit fellow researchers’ works.Table 4.10Mean scores of Self-Efficacy in other academic or service-related activities dimensionsOther academic or service-related activities dimensions N Mean SD LevelDimension 6: Professional engagement activities 86 5.01 .
603 HighDimension 7: Internal executive tasks 86 5.23 .573 HighOverall Total Mean Score 86 5.12 .545 High*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confidentIn view of self-efficacy in other academic or service-related activities dimension, instructional leaders reported higher self-efficacy in the internal executive tasks dimension (M=5.23, SD=.
573) compared to professional engagement activities dimension (M=5.01, SD=.603) (refer Table 4.
10). Furthermore, Jongbloed, Enders & Salerno (2008) stated that the instructional leaders probably feel more confident and comfortable dealing with the internal parties that they are well-acquainted with such as colleagues, administrative staffs and higher management of the campus rather than dealing with unfamiliar external parties such as companies, charity organizations, government officers, media and society members.Table 4.11Mean scores of Self-Efficacy in other academic or service-related activities for Dimension 6: Professional engagement activitiesSection B: ItemsIndicate how confident you are in the areas below: N Mean SDB59 participating in courses outside the university (including external examining) 86 5.09 .
760B55 answering public queries 86 5.07 .779B58 collaborating with external agencies about course- Work 86 5.06 .730B61 expressing ideas/opinions related to your area of expertise via print media 86 5.03 .770B56 participating in professional associations 86 5.01 .
711B57 collaborating with external agencies about research 86 4.99 .711B54 consulting professionally 86 4.98 .719B60 expressing ideas/opinions related to your area of expertise via broadcast media 86 4.88 .
800Total Mean Score 86 5.01 .603*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confident. Table 4.11 shows the mean scores of self-efficacy in other academic or service-related activities for individual items under the professional engagement activities dimension. Generally, among the eight items, the mean scores ranged from 4.88 to 5.09. Majority of the instructional leaders reported that they were confident in participating in courses outside the university (M=5.09, SD=.766) (refer Table 4.11). Abdullah et al. (2011) inferred that instructional leaders probably enjoyed the knowledge exchange and interaction between members in the courses as well as discovery of new knowledge steered by the moderator or instructor. Meanwhile, little instructional leaders reported that they were confident in expressing ideas or opinions related to their areas of expertise via broadcast media (M=4.88, SD=.800) (refer Table 4.11). This is possibly due to the public scrutiny over the feasibility of their ideas or opinions (O’Neill, 2010). Besides, Gagliardone et al. (2015) mentioned that instructional leaders might face backlash if their ideas or opinions are out of the normality or contrast with the society’s viewpoint.Table 4.12Mean score of Self-Efficacy in other academic or service-related activities for Dimension 7: Internal executive tasksSection B: ItemsIndicate how confident you are in the areas below: N Mean SDB64 participating in departmental activities 86 5.43 .642B69 writing a reference letter for a student 86 5.43 .624B63 advising prospective students 86 5.40 .674B65 participating in university-wide committees 86 5.29 .648B68 writing a reference letter for a colleague 86 5.27 .693B67 entertaining visitors on campus 86 5.09 .761B62 organising conferences/symposium 86 5.00 .782B66 chairing academic meeting 86 4.95 .734Total Mean Score 86 5.23 .573*1= Not very confident, 2 = Moderately not confident, 3 = Slightly not confident, 4 = Slightly confident, 5 = Moderately confident, 6 = Very confidentTable 4.12 displays the mean scores of self-efficacy in other academic or service-related activities for individual items under the internal executive tasks dimension. Generally, among the eight items, the mean scores ranged from 4.93 to 5.43. Most instructional leaders reported that they were confident in participating in departmental activities and in writing a reference letter for a student (M=5.43, SD=.642)(refer Table 4.12). As these two tasks are frequently required of the lecturers, they might feel confident in executing them (Rowley, 2015). Meanwhile, certain instructional leaders reported that they were less confident in chairing academic meetings (M=4.95, SD=.734) (refer Table 4.12). Rowley (2015) stated that instructional leaders probably feel conscious of the magnitude of this responsibility and worry that they might make wrong judgement during the academic meeting. Nevertheless, it is possible that instructional leaders’ confidence in executing this task will flourish together with their experience.4.2 Significant difference between self-efficacy and demographic profileRQ 2: Are there significant differences in mean scores (frequency) of self-efficacy pertaining to demographic variables namely: i. gender, ii. academic qualifications, iii. department, and iv. length of service?Inferential statistics was formulated in order to present research question 2. Independent sample t-test and One-way ANOVA test were employed to interpret the significance of the difference among means. 4.2.1 Self-efficacy and genderH0: There is no significant difference in self-efficacy across genderH1: There is a significant difference in self-efficacy across gender.Table 4.13Independent sample t-test result for self-efficacy and genderGender N Mean SD t DfSig.Self-efficacy Male 30 5.05 .408 -2.049 84 .044Female 56 5.25 .504 Table 4.13 shows that mean score of self-efficacy obtained by female lecturers (M=5.25, SD=.504) was higher than male lecturers (M=5.05, SD=.408). To determine whether the mean scores are significantly different, an independent sample t-test was conducted. The results revealed that there was a significant difference in the mean scores of self-efficacy between female and male lecturers t(84)=-2.049, p=.044. This means that these scores were significantly different. Thus, the null hypothesis was rejected.4.2.2 Self-efficacy and academic qualificationsH0: There is no significant difference in self-efficacy across academic qualificationsH1: There is a significant difference in self-efficacy across academic qualificationsTable 4.14Independent sample t-test results for self-efficacy and academic qualificationsQualifications N Mean SD t dfSig.Self-efficacy PhD 19 5.51 .340 4.277 84 .000Master 67 5.09 .476 Table 4.14 shows that mean score of self-efficacy obtained by lecturers who possessed Ph.D (M=5.51, SD=.340) was higher than lecturers who possessed Master degree (M=5.09, SD=.476). To determine whether the mean scores are significantly different, an independent sample t-test was conducted. The results revealed that there was a significant difference in the mean scores of self-efficacy between lecturers who possessed Ph.D and Master degree t(84)=4.277, p=.000. This means that these scores were significantly different. Thus, the null hypothesis was rejected.4.2.3 Self-efficacy and departmentsH0: There is no significant difference in self-efficacy across departments.H1: There is a significant difference in self-efficacy across departments.Table 4.15Independent sample t-test results for self-efficacy and departmentsDepartments N Mean SD t dfSig.Self-efficacy Science 34 5.05 .405 -2.083 84 .040Non-Science 52 5.27 .510 Table 4.15 shows that mean score of self-efficacy obtained by non-science lecturers (M=5.27, SD=.510) was higher than science lecturers (M=5.05, SD=.405). To determine whether the mean scores are significantly different, an independent sample t-test was conducted. The results revealed that there was a significant difference in the mean scores of emotional intelligence between female and male lecturers t(84)=-2.083, p=.040. This means that these scores were significantly different. Hence, the null hypothesis was rejected.4.2.4 Self-efficacy and length of serviceH0: There is no significant difference in self-efficacy across length of service.H1: There is a significant difference in self-efficacy across length of service.Table 4.16Mean scores of self-efficacy according to length of serviceLength of service (years) N Mean SD Std. Error1-5 50 5.07 .483 .0686-10 22 5.22 .469 .10011-15 3 5.47 .000 .00016-20 5 5.56 .397 .17821-25 3 5.83 .211 .12226-30 3 5.20 .010 .006Total 86 5.18 .481 .052Table 4.16 shows that mean score of self-efficacy EI) obtained by lecturers who have worked for 21 to 25 years (M=5.83, SD=.211) was the highest amongst the mean scores of self-efficacy obtained by lecturers of various length of service; whereas, the mean score of self-efficacy obtained by lecturers who have worked for one to five years (M=5.07, SD=.483) was the lowest.Table 4.17ANOVA results for self-efficacy and length of serviceSum of Squares dfMean Square F Sig.Between Groups 2.869 5 .574 2.738 0.25Within Groups 16.762 80 .210 Total 19.631 85 To determine whether the mean scores are significantly different, a One-way ANOVA test was conducted. Table 4.17 revealed that there was a significant difference in the mean scores of self-efficacy amongst various length of service F(5,80)=2.738, p=.025. This means that these scores in general were significantly different. Hence, the null hypothesis was rejected.Table 4.18Multiple comparison results for self-efficacy and length of service(I) Service (J) Service Mean Difference (I-J) Std. Error Sig.1-5 6-10 -.14502 .11711 .21911-15 -.40062 .27209 .14516-20 -.49305* .21470 .02421-25 -.75506* .27209 .00726-30 -.13272 .27209 .6276-10 1-5 .14502 .11711 .21911-15 -.25560 .28172 .36716-20 -.34802 .22678 .12921-25 -.61004* .28172 .03326-30 .01230 .28172 .96511-15 1-5 .40062 .27209 .1456-10 .25560 .28172 .36716-20 -.09243 .33429 .78321-25 -.35444 .37374 .34626-30 .26790 .37374 .47616-20 1-5 .49305* .21470 .0246-10 .34802 .22678 .12911-15 .09243 .33429 .78321-25 -.26201 .33429 .43526-30 .36032 .33429 .28421-25 1-5 .75506* .27209 .0076-10 .61004* .28172 .03311-15 .35444 .37374 .34616-20 .26201 .33429 .43526-30 .62234 .37374 .10026-30 1-5 .13272 .27209 .6276-10 -.01230 .28172 .96511-15 -.26790 .37374 .47616-20 -.36032 .33429 .28421-25 -.62234 .37374 .100*The mean difference is significant at the 0.05 levelTo further identify where the significant differences specifically occur, LSD post-hoc multiple comparison test was conducted. As seen in Table 4.18, LSD comparisons indicated that not every single mean score were significantly different from one another.5.0 ConclusionThe findings of the study revealed that instructional leaders of UiTM Foundation Centre, Dengkil, Selangor had high overall self-efficacy level as well as high self-efficacy level in all three main dimensions that consist of teaching, research and other service-related activities. In addition, it was found that there were significant differences between self-efficacy and demographic variables such as gender, academic qualifications, departments and length of service among the sample.Next, there are several implications that could arise from the findings of the study. Firstly, the findings of the study contributed to the existing corpus of knowledge in the area of self-efficacy in local context. Secondly, the findings also provide some empirical data that could support the Ministry of Higher Education and administrators of higher education institutions to delve into strategic planning regarding initiatives in enhancing high self-efficacy among instructional leaders.