Underlying factors affecting mathematics anxiety in school children

Paper


Flegg, Nicholas and Malone, John. 2008. "Underlying factors affecting mathematics anxiety in school children." Fisher, Darrell, Koul, Rekha and Wanpen, Supatra (ed.) 5th International Conference on Science, Mathematics and Technology Education 2008: Science Mathematics and Technology Education: Beyond Cultural Boundaries. Udon Thani, Thailand 16 - 19 Jan 2008 Perth, Australia.
Paper/Presentation Title

Underlying factors affecting mathematics anxiety in school children

Presentation TypePaper
AuthorsFlegg, Nicholas (Author) and Malone, John (Author)
EditorsFisher, Darrell, Koul, Rekha and Wanpen, Supatra
Journal or Proceedings TitleProceedings of the 5th International Conference on Science, Mathematics and Technology Education 2008
Number of Pages6
Year2008
Place of PublicationPerth, Australia
ISBN1740675886
Conference/Event5th International Conference on Science, Mathematics and Technology Education 2008: Science Mathematics and Technology Education: Beyond Cultural Boundaries
Event Details
5th International Conference on Science, Mathematics and Technology Education 2008: Science Mathematics and Technology Education: Beyond Cultural Boundaries
Event Date
16 to end of 19 Jan 2008
Event Location
Udon Thani, Thailand
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.

Keywordsmaths anxiety; primary education
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020520102. Educational psychology
390109. Mathematics and numeracy curriculum and pedagogy
390304. Primary education
Public Notes

Copyright 2008 by the authors. No part of these proceedings
may be reproduced by any means without permission.

Byline AffiliationsCurtin University of Technology
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
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