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ERIC Number: EJ971828
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jun
Pages: 5
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1041-6080
Reducing the Sex Difference in Math Anxiety: The Role of Spatial Processing Ability
Maloney, Erin A.; Waechter, Stephanie; Risko, Evan F.; Fugelsang, Jonathan A.
Learning and Individual Differences, v22 n3 p380-384 Jun 2012
Decades of research have demonstrated that women experience higher rates of math anxiety--that is, negative affect when performing tasks involving numerical and mathematical skill--than men. Researchers have largely attributed this sex difference in math anxiety to factors such as social stereotypes and propensity to report anxiety. Here we provide the first evidence that the sex difference in math anxiety may be due in part to sex differences in "spatial processing ability". In Study 1, undergraduate students completed questionnaires assessing their level of math anxiety and their aptitude and preference for processing spatial configurations and schematic images. The results support the hypothesis that the relation between sex and math anxiety is mediated by spatial processing ability. In Study 2, we replicate these results with a more diverse sample of adults. Implications for the prevention and remediation of math anxiety and math anxiety-related achievement deficits are discussed. (Contains 1 table and 1 figure.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A