#### Presentation Title

Math Anxiety Among Teachers and Its Impact on Students’ Math Ability

#### Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

#### Abstract/Artist Statement

Fear and anxiety about math can impede an individual’s math achievement, and math anxious people tend to perform worse than their abilities would indicate. When self-doubt and distress occurs, thinking and reasoning can be compromised. In fact, the fears that individuals with math-anxiety experience when they are forced to do math often prevent them from using their knowledge (Ashcraft & Kirk, 2001; Beilock, Gunderson, Ramirez, & Levince, 2010; Chipman, Krantz, & Silver, 1992). Math anxiety is more common among women than men and tends to manifest itself as an unpleasant emotional response to math or the prospect of doing math (Hembree, 1990). Due to these negative reactions, individuals with high levels of math anxiety tend to stay away from math courses and math-related career paths (Ashcraft & Kirk, 2001). At most United States universities, elementary education majors have minimal math education requirements, and these students have been found to harbor the highest levels of math anxiety of any college major (Beilock, Gundesron, Ramirez, et al., 2010). When these teachers are charged to teach elementary school students mathematics, their own anxieties may impact their students’ math achievements (Banilower et al., 2013). Ninety percent of elementary school teachers in the United States are female, and since children are more likely to model the behaviors of same gender adults, girls may be more likely to notice their teacher’s attitudes and fears than boys (Beilock et al., 2010). Math anxious teachers have been found to transfer their anxiety to their students, and this has been correlated to decreased student performance. Beilock et al. (2010) investigated the relationship between math anxiety, math achievement, and gender ability beliefs among first and second grade female teachers and their students over the course of a year. By the end of the school year, the higher a teacher’s math anxiety, the lower was the math achievement of her female students. No correlation was found between teachers’ anxiety levels and the achievement of their male students. Very few studies have evaluated whether or not these trends hold true among male teachers or if math anxiety persists as students move through elementary school. As a result, this study serves to address this gap in the research. Math anxiety and math achievement among teachers from a suburban school in Montana, along with their students in grades kindergarten to eighth grade, were evaluated based on their math ability and anxiety over the course of a school year. Significant trends were determined, and the resulting implications will be discussed in this poster.

#### Mentor Name

Georgia Cobbs

Math Anxiety Among Teachers and Its Impact on Students’ Math Ability

UC North Ballroom

Fear and anxiety about math can impede an individual’s math achievement, and math anxious people tend to perform worse than their abilities would indicate. When self-doubt and distress occurs, thinking and reasoning can be compromised. In fact, the fears that individuals with math-anxiety experience when they are forced to do math often prevent them from using their knowledge (Ashcraft & Kirk, 2001; Beilock, Gunderson, Ramirez, & Levince, 2010; Chipman, Krantz, & Silver, 1992). Math anxiety is more common among women than men and tends to manifest itself as an unpleasant emotional response to math or the prospect of doing math (Hembree, 1990). Due to these negative reactions, individuals with high levels of math anxiety tend to stay away from math courses and math-related career paths (Ashcraft & Kirk, 2001). At most United States universities, elementary education majors have minimal math education requirements, and these students have been found to harbor the highest levels of math anxiety of any college major (Beilock, Gundesron, Ramirez, et al., 2010). When these teachers are charged to teach elementary school students mathematics, their own anxieties may impact their students’ math achievements (Banilower et al., 2013). Ninety percent of elementary school teachers in the United States are female, and since children are more likely to model the behaviors of same gender adults, girls may be more likely to notice their teacher’s attitudes and fears than boys (Beilock et al., 2010). Math anxious teachers have been found to transfer their anxiety to their students, and this has been correlated to decreased student performance. Beilock et al. (2010) investigated the relationship between math anxiety, math achievement, and gender ability beliefs among first and second grade female teachers and their students over the course of a year. By the end of the school year, the higher a teacher’s math anxiety, the lower was the math achievement of her female students. No correlation was found between teachers’ anxiety levels and the achievement of their male students. Very few studies have evaluated whether or not these trends hold true among male teachers or if math anxiety persists as students move through elementary school. As a result, this study serves to address this gap in the research. Math anxiety and math achievement among teachers from a suburban school in Montana, along with their students in grades kindergarten to eighth grade, were evaluated based on their math ability and anxiety over the course of a school year. Significant trends were determined, and the resulting implications will be discussed in this poster.