Zimmerman claimed that if children are self-confident they can learn they are more likely to sacrifice immediate recreational time for possible rewards in the future. enhancing their self-regulative capability. By adolescence, youth that have little contact with friends tend to have low self-confidence. Successful performance of children in music also increases feelings of self-confidence, increasing motivation for study.
In children, self-confidence emerges differently than adults. For example, Fenton suggested that only children as a group are more self-confident than other children.
Many students focus on studies in school. In general, students who perform well have increased confidence which likely in turn encourages students to take greater responsibility to successfully complete tasks. Students who perform better receive more positive evaluations report and greater self-confidence. Low achieving students report less confidence and high performing students report higher self-confidence.
Teachers can greatly affect the self-confidence of their students depending on how they treat them. In particular, Steele and Aronson established that black students perform more poorly on exams (relative to white students) if they must reveal their racial identities before the exam, a phenomenon known as “stereotype threat.” Keller and Dauenheimer find a similar phenomena in relation to female student’s performance (relative to male student’s) on math tests  Sociologists of education Zhou and Lee have observed the reverse phenomena occurring amongst Asian-Americans, whose confidence becomes tied up in expectations that they will succeed by both parents and teachers and who claim others perceive them as excelling academically more than they in fact are.
In one study of UCLA students, males (compared to females) and adolescents with more siblings (compared to those with less) were more self-confident. Individuals who were self-confident specifically in the academic domain were more likely to be happy but higher general self-confidence was not correlated with happiness. With greater anxiety, shyness and depression, emotionally vulnerable students feel more lonely due to a lack of general self-confidence. Another study of first year college students found men to be much more self-confident than women in athletic and academic activities. In regards to inter-ethnic interaction and language learning, studies show that those who engage more with people of a different ethnicity and language become more self-confident in interacting with them.
Men versus women
Barber and Odean find that male common stock investors trade 45% more than their female counterparts, which they attribute greater recklessness (though also self-confidence) of men, reducing men’s net returns by 2.65 percentage points per year versus women’s 1.72 percentage points.
Some have found that women who are either high or low in general self-confidence are more likely to be persuaded to change their opinion than women with medium self-confidence. However, when specific high confidence (self-efficacy) is high, generalized confidence plays less of a role in affecting their ability to carry out the task. Research finds that females report self-confidence levels in supervising subordinates proportionate to their experience level, while males report being able to supervise subordinates well regardless of experience.
Evidence also has suggested that women who are more self-confident may received high performance evaluations but not be as well liked as men that engage in the same behavior. However confident women were considered a better job candidates than both men and women who behaved modestly In the aftermath of the first wave of feminism and women’s role in the labor force during the World War, Maslow argued that some women who possessed a more “dominant” personality were more self-confident and therefore would aspire to and achieve more intellectually than those that had a less “dominant” personality—even if they had the same level of intelligence as the “less dominant” women. However, Phillip Eisenberg later found the same dynamic among men.