Self-efficacy involves making a person makes a judgment on the ability to perform certain tasks. Unlike self-esteem that makes reflections on an individual’s worth or value, self-efficacy determines the confidence in an individual towards accomplishing certain tasks and reaching certain goals. A number of perspectives exist in the study of self-efficacy beliefs including the development and the dynamics involved. Ideally, self-efficacy beliefs have effects in all aspects of the human body, because through the determination of a person’s ability and belief towards the accomplishment of certain tasks. In return, self-efficacy affects situations through the use of power. It is substantively clear that self-efficacy beliefs have the necessary power that an individual requires to perform a certain task as well as make an informed decision in regard to a particular task. In life, tasks usually involve the numerous challenges faced, and as such, self-efficacy beliefs determine the ability to tackle the different life challenges by making the most appropriate and informed decisions.
Four major theoretical approaches exist from which the study of self-efficacy beliefs emanates, especially in career development. Such include the social cognitive theory, social learning theory, self-concept theory, and attribution theory. The social cognitive theory makes emphasis on the development of an individual’s personality through observational learning and experiences from a social perspective. Ideally, the main concept from the social cognitive theory is that all reactions and actions in an individual result from observation of others (Edenborough, 2005, 64). Social learning theory, which involves the development of an individual’s emotional and practical skills, entails primarily learning in a social group setting and determines the success or failure of an individual’s dynamic interactions in social settings. Self-concept as a theory of self-efficacy beliefs involves the aspect of perception and explanation of an individual’s existence as an attribute to the acquired external factors and influences. Attribution theory on its part involves an individual’s attributions to events and self-perception as a means of developing the inner ability to tackle life challenges.