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The impact of parents on the development of efficacy

'The newborn comes without any sense of self. Infants’ exploratory experiences in which they see themselves produce effects by their actions provide the initial basis for developing a sense of efficacy. Shaking a rattle produces predictable sounds, energetic kicks shake their cribs, and screams bring adults. … Infants who experience success in controlling environmental events become more attentive to their own behaviour and more competent in learning new efficacious responses, than are infants for whom the same environmental events occur regardless of how they behave.'
Albert Bandura

As is clear from the above quotation, Bandura argues that parents have a key role to play in helping young children to feel efficacious. By being responsive to their infant’s behaviour parents can accelerate their child’s social, linguistic and cognitive development. Once the child gets older the parents’ role in developing efficacious attitudes is augmented by the child’s peer group. Bandura argues that ‘it is in peer relationships that [children] broadenself-knowledgeof their capabilities.'  He argues that a child's level of efficacy can affect these peer relationships. Children who have too much can be aggressive and intimidate others while those who have too little can withdraw from social contact and thereby weaken further their faltering sense of efficacy.

Bandura argues that feelings of self-efficacy play an important part throughout an individual’s life whether it be through the troublesome time of adolescence, entering the workforce, becoming a parent, dealing with retirement or coping with the impairments which can come with old age.
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