Gender differences in mathematics anxiety : a function of response bias, math background or socialization?
Flessati, Sonya Lucia
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Previous research has found that females are more vulnerable to experiencing mathematics anxiety. The present study examined two explanations for the gender difference, the ”sex-role" hypothesis, which suggests that gender differences occur as a result of differences in socialization, and the response bias hypothesis, which suggests that males and females may hold different views about the acceptability of expressing math anxiety. Introductory psychology students completed a series of questionnaires examining mathematics anxiety, attitudes and mathematical background. Neither of the explanations were supported by the data. An alternative explanation for the gender difference in math anxiety is proposed based on the finding that females are more self critical.