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Effects of Early Acceleration of Students in Mathematics on Attitude and Anxiety Toward Mathematics: The Developmental Perspective


by Xin Ma — 2003

This study examined the effects of early acceleration of students in mathematics on the development of their attitudes toward mathematics and mathematics anxiety across junior and senior high school. Data were derived from the Longitudinal Study of American Youth (LSAY). Hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) analyses showed that attitudes declined in the same degree between accelerated and nonaccelerated gifted and honors students, but declined significantly faster in accelerated than nonaccelerated regular students. Accelerated gifted students did not increase their anxiety. Anxiety grew at a similar rate between accelerated and nonaccelerated honors students, but accelerated regular students increased their anxiety significantly faster than nonaccelerated regular students. Once students were accelerated, most variation in rates of attitude and anxiety change was at the student rather than school level. Racial/ethnic background was the most important factor influencing rate of change at the student level. School contextual characteristics were major factors influencing rate of change at the school level.


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 105 Number 3, 2003, p. 438-464
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 11113, Date Accessed: 10/19/2017 4:06:49 PM

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About the Author
  • Xin Ma
    University of Alberta
    E-mail Author
    XIN MA is an associate professor and Director of the Canadian Centre for Advanced Studies of National Databases at the University of Alberta. He is Fellow of the National Academy of Education. His main research interests include mathematics education, school effectiveness, policy analysis, and quantitative methods. He is the author of the book A National Assessment of Mathematics Participation in the United States: A Survival Analysis Model for Describing Students’ Academic Careers (1997, Edwin Mellen).
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