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A psychological perspective of agency and structure within critical realist theory: a specific application to the construct of self-efficacy

Booker, R; (2021) A psychological perspective of agency and structure within critical realist theory: a specific application to the construct of self-efficacy. Journal of Critical Realism , 20 (3) 10.1080/14767430.2021.1958281. Green open access

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Abstract

The discipline of psychology has been under-represented in the critical realist account of the relationship between structure and agency. In this paper a critical realist perspective of educational psychology research focuses on the psychological analysis of the individual and what might be considered as ‘real' and having causal power. Bhaskar's criteria for an entity to be ontologically real are applied to the psychological entity of self-efficacy in the context of a typical piece of classroom teacher-pupil interaction. The role of self-efficacy alongside other psychological, social and cultural entities is presented as a causal mechanism for the generation of Archer’s internal conversation which leads to agency. Self-efficacy is further examined in relation to criteria of ontological depth and emergence. This perspective creates the basis for a consistent ontological framework across educational psychology and that of the social sciences and a sound basis for interdisciplinary research and theory development.

Type: Article
Title: A psychological perspective of agency and structure within critical realist theory: a specific application to the construct of self-efficacy
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/14767430.2021.1958281
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/14767430.2021.1958281
Language: English
Additional information: © 2021 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10132668
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