Efficacy of the Theory of Planned Behaviour: A meta-analytic review


Centre for Research in Social Attitudes, Department of Psychology, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TP, UK.


The Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) has received considerable attention in the literature. The present study is a quantitative integration and review of that research. From a database of 185 independent studies published up to the end of 1997, the TPB accounted for 27% and 39% of the variance in behaviour and intention, respectively. The perceived behavioural control (PBC) construct accounted for significant amounts of variance in intention and behaviour, independent of theory of reasoned action variables. When behaviour measures were self-reports, the TPB accounted for 11% more of the variance in behaviour than when behaviour measures were objective or observed (R2s = .31 and .21, respectively). Attitude, subjective norm and PBC account for significantly more of the variance in individuals' desires than intentions or self-predictions, but intentions and self-predictions were better predictors of behaviour. The subjective norm construct is generally found to be a weak predictor of intentions. This is partly attributable to a combination of poor measurement and the need for expansion of the normative component. The discussion focuses on ways in which current TPB research can be taken forward in the light of the present review.