Self-Control, Self-Efficacy, and Work Ethic as Potential Factors in Entitlement in Adolescents

Janine Shalka, Walden University


Narcissism has increased in the past 3 decades. Entitlement is a component of narcissism, and substantial research indicates that entitlement is associated with negative behaviors such as aggression, relationship conflict, incivility, and unreasonable expectations in the workplace, learning environments, and relationships. Despite such findings, factors such as self-control, work ethic, and self-efficacy that might explain the variance in entitlement in adolescents has received little investigation. Social cognitive theory indicates that continuous reciprocal relationships exist between personal, behavioral, and environmental factors. The study employed cross-sectional survey research to gather data from 118 students in Grades 10, 11, and 12 in the United States. A multiple regression was used to investigate whether each of self-control, as measured by the Self-Control Scale; work ethic, as measured by the Multidimensional Work Ethic Profileâ??Short Form; and self-efficacy, as measured by the General Self-Efficacy Scale, explained unique variance in the criterion variable entitlement, as measured by the Psychological Entitlement Scale, and a correlational analysis was used to examine the relationships between the variables. Self-control and work ethic displayed statistically significant negative correlations with entitlement, and each explained unique variance in entitlement. Self-efficacy was not a predictor of entitlement. The findings indicate that parents, teachers, and practitioners should design interventions aimed to increase work ethic and increase self-control to curb entitlement and its negative effects.