Genderstereotypen en rekenvaardigheden: De mediërende rol van rekenangst
Jongh, S. de
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Early mathematical abilities are a precursor of academic performances later in life. It is therefore important that the factors influencing mathematical abilities are understood. The current study aims to provide insight in the relationship between social-emotional factors and mathematical abilities. The influence of both gender stereotypes and math anxiety on mathematical abilities is examined, as well as the possibility of a mediating role of math anxiety in the relationship between gender stereotypes and mathematical abilities. In addition, this study looks at these relationships separately for men and women to see if there are gender differences. It is expected that there is a negative relationship between gender stereotypes and mathematical abilities, mediated by math anxiety. This relationship is expected to be stronger for women. It is also expected that both math anxiety and gender stereotypes are individually negatively related to mathematical abilities. 187 Dutch participants aged 18 - 35 were asked to participate in a number of tasks and fill out questionnaires to measure their mathematical abilities, math anxiety and gender stereotypes. The results show that gender stereotypes are not a significant predictor of mathematical abilities, excluding the possibility of a mediating role for math anxiety. There is, however, a significant relationship between math anxiety and mathematical abilities in women. These results lead to the recommendation of focussing more on math anxiety in education, and on math anxiety courses for girls and women. Future research should continue to investigate factors influencing mathematical abilities, especially among children considering the influence of mathematical abilities on their academic performance.