Pre-service accounting teachers’ attitudes to mathematics
Mathematics proficiency has an acknowledged impact on students’ accounting grades. Success in this core business subject is dependent on students’ mathematical aptitude, attitude and type of secondary schooling. Our study investigated accounting students’ attitudes to mathematics on domains of the Fennema-Sherman Mathematics Attitudes Scales (F-SMAS) and identified demographic variables in overall attitudes to mathematics, which are pertinent to higher education pedagogy for accountancy. Eight of nine F-SMAS with established reliability and validity were used for the study. A cross-sectional data set containing demographic details and attitudes to mathematics were collected, and quantitative responses of 255 first-, second- and third-year pre-service teachers were analysed. The F-SMAS scores were strongly positive, except for mathematics anxiety, where the score was slightly above neutral. The distribution of scores showed that there are first- and second-year students who experience mathematics anxiety, and have low scores in other domains, while third-year students are less anxious. The results also revealed more positive overall attitude to mathematics from specific categories of students, who also more frequently indicated parents and teachers as sources of support and encouragement for mathematics studies.
Keywords: accounting; attitudes; mathematics; pre-service accounting teachers; teaching
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