Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science





First Advisor

Loreto Prieto


Effective research training environments (RTEs) within graduate psychology degree

programs have been shown to increase students' level of research self-efficacy (RSE). Higher

levels of student RSE are likely associated with the greater perceptions of the utility of research

skills and a greater willingness to engage in research-based activities in later professional work.

Relations among the variables of RTEs, RSE, and continuing research-based activities have been

well established among graduate psychology students, but the effect of RTEs in undergraduate

psychology training has not yet been examined. The focus of students’ perceived utility of their

research skills post-graduation was a new addition to the literature in this area. Guided by Social

Cognitive and Social Cognitive Career Theory, I examined the model of effective RTEs

suggested by Gelso et al. (1996) and its effects on my variables of interest, within an

undergraduate psychology student sample. Specifically, I examined a moderated mediation

model involving RTE, RSE, perceived utility of research skills, and willingness to engage in

future research. I found that RTEs in undergraduate training increased student RSE, and that

student RSE significantly mediated the direct effect of RTE on students’ willingness to engage in

research in post-graduation employment. Students’ perceived utility of their research skills in

post-graduation employment did not moderate the indirect effect of student RSE. I discuss

recommendations concerning the use of effective RTEs to enhance undergraduate psychology

students' development and use of research-based skills in future work environments.

Copyright Owner

Kaitlyn Burke



File Format


File Size

114 pages