Research Paper Sample on the Relationship Between Self-efficacy and Symptoms of Anxiety and Depression

Published: 2022-03-15 16:43:48
Research Paper Sample on the Relationship Between Self-efficacy and Symptoms of Anxiety and Depression
Type of paper:  Research paper
Categories: Productivity Depression Anxiety disorder
Pages: 6
Wordcount: 1493 words
13 min read
143 views

Research Questions and Research Hypotheses

I am interested in researching the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression. To further explore this topic, I would like to investigate if socio-demographic variables such as gender, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status mediate the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression. The following research questions will guide the proposed study:

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Is there a relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression?

Does gender mediate the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression?

Does ethnicity (Black, White, or Hispanic/Latino) mediate the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression?

Does socio-economic status (low or high socioeconomic status) mediate the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression?

The following null hypotheses will be used to address the above research questions:

There is no statistically significant a relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Gender does not significantly mediate the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Ethnicity does not significantly impact on the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Socio-economic status does not significantly impact on the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression.

On the other hand, the alternative hypotheses associated with each of the above research questions are:

There is a statistically significant a relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Gender significantly mediates the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Ethnicity significantly mediates the impact on the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Socio-economic status significantly mediates the impact on the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Background

Self-efficacy can be defined as an individual's belief in his or her capability to accomplish a given task (Tahmassian & Moghadam, 2011). Efficacy beliefs affect a person's thinking, feelings, self-motivation, and behavior. A higher sense of self-efficacy has been associated with personal accomplishment as well as lower stress and depression levels. Conversely, inefficacious individuals avoid challenging tasks because they view the tasks as threats. Additionally, lower levels of self-efficacy are associated with higher susceptibility to stress and depression. Moreover, individuals with low levels of self-efficacy have higher levels of stress, which interferes with their well-being. Even though some degree of stress may be beneficial to an individual, high level of stress can become a substantial impairment to daily life activities (Ghaderi & Salehi, 2011). Therefore, it is important for children and adolescents to have moderate to higher levels of self-efficacy to overcome daily life obstacles as well as to reach their set goals.

Adolescence is an important stage in a person's life when social competencies needed in adulthood are expected to be acquired. Stressors in adolescence have been linked to mental disorders such as anxiety and depression in adulthood. The onset of these disorders is childhood and early adolescence, but sharply increases in young adulthood. Research studies have been conducted to examine the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of psychopathological disorders in adolescence. In one such study, Muris, (2002) found out that inefficacious children were found to have higher anxiety levels and more anxiety and depressive symptoms. Low level of social self-efficacy was also reported to predict social phobia while emotional inefficacious children were found to be associated with anxiety and panic disorders (Muris, 2002). In a related study, Ghaderi and Salehi (2011) found a negative correlation between self-efficacy and depression. Similarly, a negative relationship between the higher level of self-efficacy and anxiety was found. Moreover, lower stress level was linked to higher self-efficacy levels.

Proposed Data Analysis Methods

Research Hypothesis 1: Is there a relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression?

To determine whether a relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression exist, Pearson-product moment correlation analysis will be conducted in SPSS version 24. Correlation analysis is the most appropriate data analysis technique because it can indicate the direction as well as the strength of the relationship between two variables. In this case, the independent variable is self-efficacy while the dependent variable is symptoms of anxiety and depression. Both of these variables can e measured on a continuous eve of measurement, making correlation analysis the best statistical method of determining the existence of a relationship between the two.

Research Hypothesis 2: Does gender mediate the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression?

The second hypothesis is a mediation hypothesis. Mediation is a hypothesized causal relationship where one variable has an impact on the second variable, which in turn affects a third variable. In this type of hypothesis, a mediator is an intervening variable which "mediates" the relationship between the independent variable and the dependent variable as shown in the diagram below. In the second hypothesis, the mediator variable is gender while the predictor variable and the outcome variable is symptoms of anxiety and depression. Mediation will be tested using Baron and Kenny (1986) four step approach. This involves carrying out of several regression analyses with significance of the coefficients being examined at every step. The first step involves conducting a simple regression analysis to test for the direct relationship between the independent and the dependent variable. In the second step, a simple regression analysis is also conducted to examine the relationship between the independent variable and the mediator variable. On the other hand, the third step involves a simple regression analysis with the mediator variable predicting the dependent variable. Lastly, a multiple regression analysis will be conducted with the independent variable and the mediator variable predicting the dependent variable.

Hypothesis 3: Does ethnicity mediate the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression?

The third hypothesis is also mediation hypothesis. Mediation will be tested using Baron and Kenny (1986) four step approach involving simple and multiple regression analysis. In this case, ethnicity is the mediator variable while self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression is the predictor variable and the outcome variable respectively.

Hypothesis 4: Socio-economic status does not significantly impact on the relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression.

The third hypothesis is also a mediation hypothesis. Mediation will be tested using Baron and Kenny (1986) four step approach involving simple and multiple regression analysis. In this case, socio-economic status is the mediator variable while self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety and depression is the predictor variable and he outcome variable respectively.

Data Collection

Self-Efficacy Questionnaire Instrument

Collection of participants' self-efficacy data will be done using Self-Efficacy Questionnaire for Children (SEQ-C). The SEQ-C is comprised of 24 questionnaire items. These items can be categorized into three major domains of self-efficacy: social self-efficacy, academic self-efficacy, and emotional self-efficacy. The first subscale, social self-efficacy subscale, consists of eight items which assesses participants' perceived capability for peer relationships and assertiveness. The second subscale, academic self-efficacy subscale, is comprised of eight items which measures participants' perceived capacity for self-management of learning, mastery of academic subjects, and accomplishment of academic expectations. Lastly, the third subscale, emotional self-efficacy subscale measures participants' perceived capacity of overcoming negative emotions. This subscale is also comprised of eight items. Each questionnaire item will be scored on a 5-point scale ranging from not at all (1) to very well (5). The composite self-efficacy score will be obtained by summing item response scores. The SEQ-C has been reported to have high reliability and validity. The composite test-retest reliability has been found to be 0.89 while the emotional self-efficacy sub-scale has a test-retest reliability of 0.88 (Tahmassian & Moghadam, 2011).

Spilberger's State Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI)

Measurement of trait and state anxiety will be conducted using STAI questionnaire. in clinical settings, STAI is also useful in diagnosis of anxiety and in differentiating it from depression. It is comprised of 40 items, 20 items for assessment of trait anxiety and 20 for assessing state anxiety. All the items are scored on a 4-point scale ranging from 1 (Almost Never) to 4 (Almost always). Higher STAI composite scores is an indicator of higher anxiety levels and vice versa. The STAI scale has been reported to have high reliability scores of between 0.86 and 0.95 and good evidence of construct and concurrent validity (America Psychological Association, n.p.). Therefore, STAI is a valid measure of anxiety.

References

American Psychological Association (n.d.). The State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI). Retrived from http://www.apa.org/pi/about/publications/caregivers/practice-settings/assessment/tools/trait-state.aspx

Baron, R. M., & Kenny, D. A. (1986). The moderator-mediator variable distinction in social psychological research: Conceptual, strategic, and statistical considerations. Journal of personality and social psychology, 51(6), 1173-1182.

Ghaderi, A., & Salehi, M. (2011). A study of the level of self-efficacy, depression and anxiety between accounting and management students: Iranian evidence. World Appl Sci, 12(9), 1299-306.

Muris, P. (2002). Relationships between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety disorders and depression in a normal adolescent sample. Personality and individual differences, 32(2), 337-348.

Tahmassian, K., & Moghadam, N. J. (2011). Relationship between self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety, depression, worry and social avoidance in a normal sample of students. Iranian journal of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, 5(2), 91-98.

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