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Self-efficacy and outcome expectancies of secondary school students in performing basic life support

Authors: Rico Dumcke, Niels Rahe-Meyer and Claas Wegner


Background: Basic life support (BLS) is recommended to be a part of the health education curriculum in secondary
schools to increase the bystander resuscitation rate in Europe. Bystander efforts in cardiac arrest can increase
survival up to fourfold. Important determinants to change behaviour and encourage altruism stem from good self-efficacy
and positive outcome expectations. This study aims to investigate improving these beliefs after providing BLS
training to secondary school students.

Methods: A closed questionnaire was handed out to N = 365 secondary school students in North Rhine-Westphalia
(Germany) before and after a BLS intervention of at least 90 minutes. Six-point rating scales for self-efficacy (9
items) and outcome expectancies (10 items) with two sub-dimensions each were specifically developed for BLS training.
To review the 4-factorial design, a factor analysis was conducted. T-tests were performed to calculate time and
gender-related differences.

Results: Self-efficacy increased after intervention, in general (p < 0.001), and for overcoming possible psychological
and social barriers (both p < 0.001). Males and females equally stated higher self-efficacy values after training (both
p < 0.001), but females were significantly more self-efficacious at t1 (p < 0.01). The perception of positive outcome
expectancies increased significantly from baseline to final test, whereas negative ones decreased (p < 0.05). Positive
expectancies were higher for females than males (p < 0.05).

Conclusion: BLS training improves situational self-efficacy and outcome expectancies and those beliefs should be
discussed in future BLS teaching concepts, especially regarding negative barriers..

Journal: The Journal of Health, Environment, & Education

Volume: 13

Pages: 1-12