I may have missed it, but I don't think I saw a reference to the 
series of studies by Beckwith and Burnett on self-efficacy as a 
significant factor leading to gender differences in early 
programming experiences.

If your experimental population includes a mix of males and
females, you may find that this is a significant effect. I would
strongly recommend recruiting balanced numbers of males and
females, and carrying out analyses that consider interaction of
self-efficacy and gender.

A typical study in this area, which shows *opposite* effects of 
an experimental intervention for males and females, is this one:

(Perhaps needless to say to you, but for the benefit of other
readers - if you carry out an experiment in which the
manipulation has opposite effects for two halves of the sample,
and don't take this into account during analysis, the overall
result will be highly inconclusive, resulting in large variance
and small mean difference).


> Dear All,
> I went through one of the suggested papers about self-efficacy  
> (Self-efficacy and mental models in learning to program, Ramalingam et  
> al, 2004). Unfortunately I'm at present totally unable to understand  
> the final results (path analysis of the model):
> post Self-Efficacy (R2 = .44) ==23*==> Performance - Grade (R2 = .30)
> Mental Model (R2 = .05) ==.40*==> Performance - Grade (R2 = .30)
> The paper says that "both what student know, as represented by their  
> internal mental model, and what they believe about themselves, as  
> represented by their self-efficacy, affect their performance in the  
> course."
> Is there a naive way of rephrasing the 23* and .40* weights on the  
> arrows from "post Self-Efficacy" to "Performance - Grade" and from  
> "Mental Model" to "Performance - Grade"? I mean, in terms of  
> percentages, meaningfulness or other.
> Thanks in advance for all the help you keep giving me
> Stefano
> Stefano Federici
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> Università degli Studi di Cagliari
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Alan Blackwell
Reader in Interdisciplinary Design, University of Cambridge
Further details from www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~afb21/

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