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Development and validation of an instrument to assess the self -confidence of students enrolled in the advanced pharmacy practice experience component of the doctor of pharmacy curriculum

Purdue University
Publication Date
  • Health Sciences
  • Education|Health Sciences
  • Pharmacy|Psychology
  • Psychometrics
  • Communication
  • Pharmacology


The purpose of this study was to: (1) develop a reliable and valid measure of doctor of pharmacy (Pharm.D.) students' self-confidence; (2) compare students' self-confidence scores with their demographic variables; and (3) determine the effect of selected student demographic variables as independent predictors of the students' level of self-confidence. The study used the self-efficacy theory as the theoretical underpinning of the developed instrument and was implemented through four major steps: (1) instrument development, (2) expert review of the instrument, (3) pilot testing of the instrument, and (4) large scale testing of the instrument. Generated items were based on literature review and informal interviews with preceptors/faculty members. Following content validation by an internal and a national content review panel, the instrument was revised to 74 items. The revised instrument, demographic survey, and the Marlowe-Crowne Social Desirability Scale were mailed to a pilot sample of 260 students from six colleges/schools of pharmacy participating in terminal experiential rotations during spring 2000. Fifty-three percent of students (N = 137) completed and returned the instrument. Exploratory factor analysis (EFA) was performed on 55 items after eliminating 19 items that were found to have social desirability biasing effects. EFA resulted in a further reduction to 34 items and was interpreted as representing three subscales: knowledge base and pharmaceutical care, professionalism, and communication skills. The instrument had a coefficient alpha of 0.96. Subsequently, a 34-item instrument and demographic form were mailed to 837 students from 13 colleges of pharmacy participating in experiential rotations nationwide during fall 2000. Thirty-nine percent of students (N = 324) completed and returned the instrument. Replication of item analysis and confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) on the 34-item instrument were conducted. One item from professionalism subscale was eliminated after replication of item analysis, resulting 33 items (i.e., long version of the instrument). The coefficient alpha for 33-item instrument was 0.94. The CFA indicated that the instrument could be revised to 22 items (i.e., short version of the instrument) and demonstrated that the three-subscale model had satisfactory fit to the data. The CFA also provided evidence of the convergent and discriminant validity of the instrument. The coefficient alpha of the 22-item instrument was 0.92. There were significant differences among students' self-confidence scores based on several demographic variables (e.g., age, colleges/schools, GPA, pharmacy student organization level of involvement) for each subscale and/or all combined subscales. Several student demographic variables (e.g., age, GPA, community service/volunteerism activities level of involvement) were also significantly independent predictors of students' level of self-confidence (i.e., high, medium, low) for each subscales and/or all combined subscales. ^

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