Math Anxiety, Math Achievement and Gender Differences among Primary School Children and their Parents from Palestine


  • Nagham Anbar
  • Lavinia Cheie
  • Laura Visu-Petra


Math anxiety; math performance; primary school children; parental influence; gender differences


This study explored the math anxiety (MA) level and math achievement of primary school children and the association of these variables to their gender differences and parents’ math anxiety. Also, we investigated the potential interaction between child MA and parental variables on child math outcomes. The sample consisted of 230 students in the 3rd and 4th grades (Mean age = 8.9; SD =.59), including one parent for each child. The Scale for Early Math Anxiety, The Mathematics Anxiety Rating Scale, The Children Test Anxiety Scale and the parental involvement survey was used for data collection. Palestinian children reported lower levels of MA compared to previous research, and the expected negative relation between students’ MA and their math achievements was confirmed. Girls reported higher levels of both MA and test anxiety than boys. A positive correlation was found between mothers’ MA and daughters’ MA, while no association between fathers’ MA and sons’ MA was found. Moreover, child MA, parental MA and trait anxiety were found to significantly predict children’s math achievement. This study contributed to a better understanding of some factors affecting mathematics achievements and future career orientations, such as Math anxiety, Test anxiety, and possible gender differences. We suggest implementing new strategies to reduce math anxiety, improve math achievement, and enhance females' contribution to math-related fields in the Palestinian community.


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