Science

Studying Math Motivation

By Kevin Bushweller — March 23, 2007 1 min read

One of the responsibilities of this blog is to troll for interesting or useful research articles about student motivation.

This morning, I found one while trolling on the American Educational Research Association site. Titled “Students’ Motivation for Standardized Math Exams,” the article examines how individual differences in motivation and psychological processing affect performance on high-stakes math assessments. It evaluates how factors such as achievement goals, self-concept, and test anxiety are related to student performance.

Among other interesting information, the piece includes excerpts from interviews with 8th graders about high-stakes math tests. “Usually tests make me nervous,” says one student. “Kind of anxious like I had to hurry and then when I hurry I might not get the right answer. Like I’m worried about making the time or falling behind the other kids or something ... if they’re all done before me, I feel like I am not doing it correctly.”

What impact do you think high-stakes assessments have on motivation or performance?

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