Underlying factors affecting mathematics anxiety in school children

Flegg, Nicholas and Malone, John (2008) Underlying factors affecting mathematics anxiety in school children. In: 5th International Conference on Science, Mathematics and Technology Education 2008: Science Mathematics and Technology Education: Beyond Cultural Boundaries, 16-19 Jan 2008, Udon Thani, Thailand.

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Abstract

This presentation reports on a study that investigated mathematics anxiety among school children. Public perception has always seen mathematics as difficult and many students seem to suffer from high levels of anxiety with the subject. Changes to both the methodology of teaching mathematics and the content taught have had limited success in altering this perception or anxiety level. One reason for this limited success may be that underlying factors outside of the classroom environment have not been seriously taken into account. These factors could include parental support, the physical environment, health issues and the advent of technology. This study investigated some of these underlying factors using questionnaires. Queensland students in Years 3, 7 and 8 were investigated along with parents and teachers of Years 3 and 7 students. Correlation tests were utilised, data was cross related between the various groups and areas showing promise of being statistically significant were noted for future follow-up action. The main findings showed that underlying factors contributing to students' anxiety included: parents' own anxieties and the impact of these on their children; home issues including nutrition and tiredness; school transition matters; teacher attitudes and some technology issues. Differences due to the sex of students were also revealed. Areas needing further study are highlighted and recommendations to rectify the problems identified will be made for each stakeholder group.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: No
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Copyright 2008 by the authors. No part of these proceedings may be reproduced by any means without permission.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Education
Date Deposited: 11 Sep 2013 03:00
Last Modified: 11 Sep 2013 03:00
Uncontrolled Keywords: maths anxiety; primary education
Fields of Research : 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170103 Educational Psychology
13 Education > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130208 Mathematics and Numeracy Curriculum and Pedagogy
13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130105 Primary Education (excl. Maori)
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970113 Expanding Knowledge in Education
C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9399 Other Education and Training > 939999 Education and Training not elsewhere classified
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/23661

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