How to Impact Student Outcomes by Building Self-Efficacy in Online Learning


Presented at 8:00am in Independence on Wednesday, November 8, 2023.



  • Paula McMahon, Dr., Montana State University Billings
  • Kiera Miller, Ms., Montana State University Billings

Session Details

  • Length of Session: 1-hr
  • Format: Lecture
  • Expertise Level: Beginner
  • Type of session: General Conference


Adapting a class structure and creating scaffolding that supports students does not mean that the content is less rigorous, it means how they meet these challenges is supported and developed with faculty guidance and input. Creating online learning environments that nurture students, motivate them and engage them requires intentional practice and planning, using techniques to build student self-efficacy can assist in this process.


Self-efficacy refers to an individual's belief in their capacity to execute behaviors necessary to produce specific performance attainments (Bandura, 1977, 1986, 1997). This session will address how to identify tools and strategies designed to develop students' sense of self efficacy by utilizing interventions designed to reinforce their skills and build self-confidence. There will be a student's perspective on effective and ineffective interventions, as well as researched methods for faculty to implement to offer supports and retain and engage students in an online learning environment.


  1. Incorporating inclusive principles to encourage student success and engagement
  2. Utilizing principle of Albert Banduras to develop students confidence and academic skills.
  3. Strategies for student retention and engagement when teaching on line

Disability Areas

All Areas

Topic Areas

Accessible Educational Materials, Teaching about Accessibility in Curriculum, Uncategorized

Speaker Bio(s)

Paula McMahon

Paula McMahon is the Chair and an Assistant Professor at the Department of Rehabilitation and Human Services at Montana State University, Billings (MSUB). Paula joined the faculty of MSUB in July 2017 after a 5 ½-year career with Virginia Commonwealth University. She teaches medical and psychosocial aspects of disability, individual and family response to disability, ethics, and psychiatric rehabilitation. She has served on several campus wide committees as well as engaging in community service. She has presented numerous times at the national, state, and local level on topics related to Rehabilitation Counseling and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Her research interests include transition services for students with disabilities, social justice and advocacy, professional development and identity, community accessibility and integrated employment practices.

Kiera Miller

Kiera Miller graduated from Montana State University in 2020 with her Bachelors in Community Health with a minor in psychology. She is currently working on her master’s degree in clinical Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling at Montana State University Billings. She intends to get her Licensed Professional Counselor certification and then her doctorate. Her aim is to eventually provide services in rural Montana. Her research interest is studying the positive effect of annually administered youth risk behavior surveys and what can be learnt to help shape state and federal programs to better meet the current behavioral trends in teenagers when it comes to high-risk behaviors such as substance abuse, homelessness, trauma, or sexual activity.