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The problem addressed by this study was the relationship created by mandated English language curricula and state standardized tests and students' perceived levels of self-efficacy. Vygotsky's theories on thought and language development and Bandura's theories on self-efficacy were used as a theoretical lens for this study. The research question concerned the relationships between students' perceived levels of self-efficacy, gender, age, and grade point average (GPA) and language development when learning within a standards-based test-driven environment. The ELA portion of the State High School Exit Exam (SHEE) generated language development scores. The General Self Efficacy (GSE) scale was the survey instrument used for this study. The GSE is a 10-item scale, and each item is ranked on a 4-point scale (1-Not at All True, 4- Exactly True). The scores for each item are then added together for a total score between 10-40. Cumulative GPA, student age, gender, and language proficiency scores from the ELA portion of the SHEE were used as variables in this study. Language proficiency scores were used as a progress indicator for students' language development. Language proficiency (ELA SHEE scores) was measured an interval scale between 275-450 (350 = passing, 382 = proficient, 405 = advanced). A multiway ANOVA was conducted. According to study results, there was not a statistically significant relationship between students' perceived levels of self-efficacy, gender, age, and GPA and language development when learning within a standards-based test-driven environment. There are aspects of recent curriculum trends that seem to be helping students reach state proficiency goals while also building personal levels of self-efficacy.