Dr. Amira Ibrahim
There is a substantial increase in demand for higher education in the domains of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Math education is an important component in STEM learning and student success, especially lower division math courses. However, math anxiety (MA) impacts how sufficiently students are able to benefit from such learning opportunities. Math anxiety can be defined as a fear of or an adverse emotional response to the idea of doing mathematics. Previous studies on TA (Test Anxiety) have shown to have a negative impact on testing performance and gender. Current research indicates a negative relationship between MA and math performance and a positive correlation between MA and test anxiety. The objective of this study is to determine if there is an interaction between math anxiety, test anxiety, and gender on gateway STEM course academic achievement. Participants were recruited from STEM gateway courses at California State University Channel Islands and completed the abbreviated math anxiety questionnaire (AMAS) as well as the short Test Anxiety Inventory (TAI). Exam grades were provided by course instructors. We hypothesize that MA and positively correlate with test anxiety. We also predict that women STEM students will report a higher MA than men, but that the negative impact of MA on performance would be comparable in both genders.