Math Anxiety: Is it A Part of A Problem or A Part of The Solution?
- Aug 05, 2016
- Sudipto Das
Math anxiety is a very common issue in modern day children. This anxiety’s defined to be a feeling of tension that interferes with the manipulation of numbers and other math problem solutions. Math anxiety is the first culprit behind a student’s poor performance in the subject. A student loses his self-confidence and thus, the performance also suffers. So what are the causes of math anxiety? We will get to that in this very article and some other related things that are also associated with the same.
Math anxiety is referred to be a form of fear that’s related to mathematics. This fear is developed in students from a very early age. But there’s a twist in this tale. Experts tend to agree that people possess more capability to comprehend complex math ideas. Then why do students tend to fear math from an early stage in their career? Most people have developed the idea that inept teaching techniques can be the main culprit behind the development of math anxiety in students. We also believe that various math misconceptions play a significant role in developing this undesirable math anxiety in students. These math misconceptions take root at an early age but continue to hamper a student’ education throughout his/her career. We’ll look at the causes in more detail in the next part.
Causes of Math anxiety
The most common cause of math anxiety is the pressure of time. This pressure of time comes with tests. So basically we would say that it’s unavoidable.
Public humiliation is another cause of math anxiety. Such cases usually happen in the classrooms. A teacher explains an individual math principle in class and a particular student fails to understand that. It’s a typical incident. But the thing is that a specific student who has not learned that concept might not raise his hand and ask the teacher to clarify the issue. Why does s/he do that? That’s only because s/he feels that s/he might be humiliated publicly because of the ignorance displayed by him/her. Now, that’s just a feeling. But that feeling’s enough to develop stress in students.
Last but not the least, another primary cause of math anxiety is “misconceptions”. They develop early and create problems for a longer time. You can find some common math conceptions in this article that’s divided into three parts (part 1, part 2, part 3).
Math anxiety is handled as a part of a problem. That worsens the issue. Anxiety creates more anxiety and so on. You should try to handle this sensitive issue in a tactful way. You can also opt for professional help in this matter. That would certainly keep a check on the issue and will be beneficial for students in the long run. That should be all for now. Hope you had a good read.
Sudipto writes technical and educational content periodically for wizert.com and backs it up with extensive research and relevant examples. He's an avid reader and a tech enthusiast at the same time with a little bit of “Arsenal Football Club” thrown in as well. He's got a B.Tech in Electronics and Instrumentation.
Follow him on twitter @SudiptoDas1993
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