ERIC Number: ED432349
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998-Apr
A Comparison between Male and Female Mathematics Anxiety at a Community College.
This study was performed using a convenience sample of 90 students at a northeastern community college to determine gender differences of math anxiety and its effect on math avoidance. Four sections of an introductory English class were given a mathematics anxiety rating scale (MARS) and a math avoidance survey. Five hypotheses were analyzed using both standard normal distribution tests and chi-square contingency tables. It was determined that men reported significantly less math anxiety and sought significantly less help with math than women. Men and women were equal in avoiding taking required math courses. Women avoided majors requiring two or math courses, significantly more than men. Perception of math difficulty was not associated with math anxiety. Although there were few participants with both high levels of math anxiety and math avoidance, inspection of scatter diagrams suggest that men with high MARS scores and women of all MARS scores are at risk to avoid math courses. It is concluded that MARS represents a moderately useful measure for school professionals to predict men's math avoidance, and to a lesser degree women's math avoidance. Literature suggests that societal norms may be more influential than math anxiety in explaining women's math avoidance. This document contains thirty-nine references and two appendices, which include sample surveys and supplemental data tables. (Author/TGO)
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Masters Theses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Master's Thesis, Central Connecticut State University.