Factors that affect mathematics achievement of students include innate ability, mathematical aptitude, quality of teaching, engagement and motivation, home environment, and resources available at school.
Now take a closer look
The factors that affect mathematics achievement of students are multi-faceted and complex. Innate ability and mathematical aptitude play a role, but they are not the only determining factors. Quality of teaching, engagement and motivation, home environment, and resources available at school are also key factors.
According to a study by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, “the quality of teaching is the most important factor in determining student achievement in mathematics.” Teachers who are knowledgeable, enthusiastic, and skilled at using a variety of teaching strategies are more likely to have students who excel in math.
Student engagement and motivation are also important factors in mathematics achievement. Students who have a positive attitude toward math and feel competent in their abilities are more likely to succeed. Additionally, providing opportunities for students to engage in hands-on learning experiences can increase motivation and understanding.
The home environment plays a significant role in a student’s math achievement. Parents who are involved and supportive of their child’s education can have a positive impact. According to a report by the National Mathematics Advisory Panel, “students whose families have high expectations for learning mathematics and regularly communicate about the importance of mathematics do better in mathematics.”
Resources available at school, such as textbooks, calculators, and technology, can also impact a student’s math achievement. Providing access to appropriate resources can enable students to learn with greater ease and efficiency.
“Mathematics is not about numbers, equations, computations, or algorithms: it is about understanding.” – William Paul Thurston, mathematician
Here are some interesting facts about mathematics achievement:
- According to a study by the National Center for Education Statistics, only 42 percent of fourth-grade students in the United States perform at or above the proficient level in mathematics.
- Girls and boys perform equally well in math until around the age of 14, after which boys tend to outperform girls.
- Research has shown that students who have a growth mindset (the belief that abilities can be developed through hard work and dedication) outperform students who have a fixed mindset (the belief that abilities are innate and unchangeable).
- In the 2018 International Mathematical Olympiad, six contenders scored a perfect score of 42.
- A study by the University of Chicago found that children who use their fingers to do math problems are better at grasping mathematical concepts than those who do not.
|Factor||Impact on Mathematics Achievement|
|Innate Ability||Can play a role, but not the only determining factor|
|Quality of Teaching||Most important factor in determining student achievement|
|Engagement and Motivation||Positive attitude and hands-on learning can increase success|
|Home Environment||Supportive families with high expectations can have a positive impact|
|Resources Available at School||Access to appropriate resources can enable easier learning|
Here are some other responses to your query
- Gender. Many variables have long been studied as predictors of mathematics achievement.
- Socio-Economic Status.
- Parents’ Educational Level.
- Instructional Strategies and Methods.
- Teacher Competency in Math Education.
- Motivation or Concentration.
Three factors or predictors in math achievement are divided into sub factors: Demographic factors (gender, socio-economic status, parent’s educational level), Instructional factors (curriculum, instructional strategies and methods, teacher competency in math education, and school context and facilities, and Individual factors (self-directed learning, arithmetic ability, and motivation or concentration).
Among other influencing factors, the following are also exposed: attitudes toward mathematics and/or self-confidence with regard to mathematics (see, e.g., [ 25, 27, 40, 43 ]), mathematical self-efficacy and student engagement [ 41 ], academic self-beliefs [ 42 ], learning motivation (see, e.g., [ 22, 25 ]), learning strategies and/or availability of teaching resources (see, e.g., [ 22, 25 ]), importance of mathematics [ 23 ],…
See a related video
Ernawaty Hudong discusses the factors that affect students’ achievement in mathematics, including teaching methods, mathematics anxiety and interest, student behavior, and gender. The study conducted among vocational college students in Sabah reveals that there is a significant relationship between these factors and mathematic achievement. Hudong emphasizes the importance of creating a positive learning environment to increase interest and decrease anxiety in mathematics, and suggests the use of flexible teaching methods and student-centered learning tools and facilities to address these issues.