Math Anxiety

February 16, 2007 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

When it comes to mathematics, choking under pressure is more than just a feeling. Researchers say that “math anxiety” affects academic achievement by disrupting students’ short-term memory and their ability to block out distractions or irrelevant information. What’s more, performance pressure may hit the best students the hardest, resulting in uncharacteristically low scores for top students.

Today, the issue is receiving renewed attention from scholars and others who believe that understanding the causes and implications of math anxiety is critical to improving achievement for many students. Researchers are finding that students with math anxiety tend to rush through problems and encounter difficulty on those that require multiple steps.

What do you think? What are the causes of math anxiety? How should educators work with students to help them overcome their lack of confidence in this subject?

A version of this news article first appeared in the TalkBack blog.


Student Well-Being K-12 Essentials Forum Boosting Student and Staff Mental Health: What Schools Can Do
Join this free virtual event based on recent reporting on student and staff mental health challenges and how schools have responded.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Curriculum Webinar
Practical Methods for Integrating Computer Science into Core Curriculum
Dive into insights on integrating computer science into core curricula with expert tips and practical strategies to empower students at every grade level.
Content provided by

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated: October 11, 2023
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated: September 27, 2023
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read
Education Briefly Stated: September 20, 2023
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education From Our Research Center What's on the Minds of Educators, in Charts
Politics, gender equity, and technology—how teachers and administrators say these issues are affecting the field.
1 min read
Stylized illustration of a pie chart
Traci Daberko for Education Week