Date of Award

5-2013

Degree Type

Honors College Thesis

Department

Curriculum, Instruction, and Special Education

First Advisor

Marlene Naquin, M.S.T.

Second Advisor

Kevin Walker, Ph.D.

Advisor Department

Mathematics; Curriculum, Instruction, and Special Education

Abstract

There have been a number of studies investigating how attitudes such as confidence and motivation affect students and their academic achievement. This study was conducted to identify specifically how fifth grade students’ attitudes affect their achievement in mathematics. Gender was studied to determine its effect on attitude and achievement. Furthermore, various types of personality traits were studied including extroversion, conscientiousness, self-control, and intellectual efficiency to determine their effects on achievement. To gather the data a questionnaire including a Likert scale survey and a math test was administered. The results indicated that there is a significant relationship between attitudes toward and achievement in math. Concerning gender, males had a more positive attitude towards math compared to females, but both genders scored approximately the same on the achievement test. Finally, extroversion was the only trait to have a significant relationship with achievement, showing that students who were more extroverted scored higher on the test. These findings indicate that educators should be aware of students’ attitudes and seek to improve them in order to positively influence students’ academic achievement.

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