The general self-efficacy scale: multicultural validation studies

J Psychol. 2005 Sep;139(5):439-57. doi: 10.3200/JRLP.139.5.439-457.


General self-efficacy is the belief in one's competence to cope with a broad range of stressful or challenging demands, whereas specific self-efficacy is constrained to a particular task at hand. Relations between general self-efficacy and social cognitive variables (intention, implementation intentions, outcome expectancies, and self-regulation), behavior-specific self-efficacy, health behaviors, well-being, and coping strategies were examined among 1,933 respondents in 3 countries: Germany (n = 633), Poland (n = 359), and South Korea (n = 941). Participants were between 16 and 86 years old, and some were dealing with stressful situations such as recovery from myocardial events or tumor surgery. Perceived self-efficacy was measured by means of the General Self-Efficacy Scale (R. Schwarzer & M. Jerusalem, 1995). Meta-analysis was used to determine population effect sizes for four sets of variables. Across countries and samples, there is consistent evidence for associations between perceived self-efficacy and the variables under study confirming the validity of the psychometric scale. General self-efficacy appears to be a universal construct that yields meaningful relations with other psychological constructs.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Coronary Disease / psychology
  • Cross-Cultural Comparison*
  • Cultural Diversity*
  • Ethnicity / psychology*
  • Female
  • Gastrointestinal Neoplasms / psychology
  • Germany
  • Health Behavior
  • Humans
  • Korea
  • Language*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Personality Inventory / statistics & numerical data*
  • Poland
  • Psychometrics / statistics & numerical data
  • Reference Values
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Self Efficacy*
  • Social Adjustment
  • Students / psychology