Volume 4, Issue 3  December 2021, pp. 103–118          Download PDF

Regular Articles
Irish language self-efficacy beliefs: Mediators of performance and resources

Shane Barry https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3362-84111

1 Mary Immaculate College, IRELAND shanebarry81@gmail.com

DOI: https://doi.org/10.29140/ajal.v4n3.526


Self-efficacy, the system of beliefs that individuals possess which enables them to exercise control and actions when faced with a specific task, is an essential component to language learning, as it has the potential to promote the self-regulatory capacity required for successful language acquisition and performance. One way in which self-efficacy mediates language learning is exhibited in how individuals dedicate resources such as effort and time to overcoming tasks. The aim of this study was to determine the influence of Irish language self-efficacy beliefs on performance and resources allocated by Irish adults (N=450) on an Irish language reading test. Over two testing phases, three groups were formed based on results in phase one: a control group; a group of high performers; and a group of low performers. Manipulated comparative feedback and false results produced highly significant effects on performance and resources allocated, with low performing participants receiving a positive intervention consisting of false inflated results, leading to improved performance and increased time dedicated to task completion. High performers who received a negative intervention consisting of falsely deflated results saw a significant decrease in performance and the time allocated post-manipulation. The control group also saw a decrease in average performance scores, making the low performing group’s performance even more noteworthy. Overall, findings show that self-efficacy beliefs, though initially closely aligned with actual performance, can in fact be manipulated to influence performance outcomes.


© Shane Barry

CC  4.0
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Suggested citation

Barry, S. (2021). Irish language self-efficacy beliefs: Mediators of performance and resources. Australian Journal of Applied Linguistics, 4(3), 103–118. https://doi.org/10.29140/ajal.v4n3.526

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