Missed Opportunity in Mathematics Anxiety
Barbara Jane Melissa Brewster 1 * , Tess Miller 1
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1 University of Prince Edward Island, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, CANADA* Corresponding Author


In our technologically advanced society proficiency in mathematics is paramount to success in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) employment sector. Mathematics anxiety negatively affects an individual’s physiological and cognitive functioning, which results in the individual obtaining lower achievement in mathematics. The consequences of low mathematics achievement can have devastating consequences for the individual’s career in STEM fields which require high level mathematics. This article will provide a review of the prevalence of mathematics anxiety, its historical development, as well as theories from education, psychology, neuroscience and causal factors purporting to provide a comprehensive understanding of mathematics anxiety. We propose a fourth causal factor, missed opportunity, in which the individual is high functioning academically, but exhibiting mathematics anxiety. He or she is not able to perform well in mathematics due to missing the opportunity to learn the foundational mathematics knowledge necessary in STEM fields.


This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Article Type: Review Article

INT ELECT J MATH ED, Volume 15, Issue 3, October 2020, Article No: em0600


Publication date: 19 Jul 2020

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