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Article Reflection Assignment

The research articles should come from a peer reviewed journal and should feature a quantitative

methodology (mixed methods is okay but you must report on both quantitative and qualitative

methodology components). The following template should be used to complete this assignment.

Article Reference in APA Style:

Need:

Research Question (If not explicitly stated then write what the research question should be):

Research Design:

Data Collection:

Data Analysis: (Test used)

Findings:

Strengths of Article:

Weaknesses of Article:

Tatar, E., Zengin, Y., & Kağızmanlı, T. B. (2015). What is the Relationship between Technology and Mathematics Teaching

Anxiety? Educational Technology & Society, 18 (1), 67–76.

What is the Relationship between Technology and Mathematics Teaching

Anxiety?

Enver Tatar1*, Yılmaz Zengin2 and Türkan Berrin Kağızmanlı1

1

Department of Secondary Science and Mathematics Education, Atatürk University, Turkey // 2Department of

Secondary Science and Mathematics Education, Dicle University, Turkey // entatar@gmail.com //

yilmazzengin@outlook.com // turkanberrin@hotmail.com

*

Corresponding author

(Submitted February 17, 2014; Revised May 26, 2014; Accepted July 1, 2014)

ABSTRACT

The aim of this study is to determine the relationship between pre-service teachers’ perceptions regarding

technology use in mathematics teaching and their computer literacy levels as well as their mathematics teaching

anxiety. The nonexperimental correlational research, which is included in the quantitative research approach,

was used in the study. A total of 481 pre-service mathematics teachers constitute the sample of the study. The

mathematics teaching anxiety scale, a perception scale for technology use in mathematics teaching, and the

computer literacy scale were used as data collection tools. Based on the analysis of the obtained data, a lowlevel, negative and significant relationship was found between pre-service teachers’ mathematics teaching

anxiety and their perceptions regarding technology use in mathematics teaching. Also a low-level, negative and

significant relationship was found between pre-service teachers’ mathematics teaching anxiety and their

computer literacy levels. It may be concluded that pre-service teachers’ mathematics teaching anxiety decreases

as their perception levels regarding technology use in mathematics teaching positively increases and their

computer literacy levels increase.

Keywords

Mathematics teaching anxiety, Computer literacy, Pre-service teachers, Perceptions regarding technology use in

mathematics teaching

Introduction

Mathematics anxiety emerges when students exhibit illogical emotional reactions or when they are expected or

required to solve mathematics problems (Aydın, 2011). It is considered among the common affective factors that

have drawn attention in recent years (Baloğlu & Koçak, 2006). Many researchers have tried to define mathematics

anxiety. Among these researchers, Dreger and Aiken (1957) defined mathematics anxiety as a syndrome of affective

reactions exhibited towards mathematics whereas Ashcraft and Faust (1994) defined it as the tension, helplessness

and mental disorganization that individuals experience when they are required to perform an operation with numbers

and figures or when they solve a mathematics problem. Mathematics anxiety may cause the emergence of such

behaviors in students as avoiding mathematics courses and developing negative attitudes towards activities that

require mathematical operations (Ma & Xu, 2004). Mathematics achievement, mathematics performance and

applications to education are the factors that impact on anxiety (AsHcraft & Krause, 2007). According to Gresham

(2010), mathematics anxiety is defined as both an affective and a cognitive feature in the nature of individuals who

experience learning problems. Since it is a frequently encountered condition in every stage of education, it is

important to understand and define, and to avoid or reduce mathematics anxiety. According to Skemp, memorized

rules and the manipulation of symbols with little or no meaning are more difficult to learn than an integrated

conceptual structure, and this can result in major slipping blocks for the student (as cited in Newstead, 1998). The

very abstract nature of mathematical symbols adds to the difficulties that people encounter when learning

mathematics, including difficulties in storing and using information in working memory (AsHcraft & Krause, 2007).

It was found by researchers that anxiety towards mathematics plays a significant role in students’ failure in this

course (Arı, Savaş, & Konca, 2010; Baloğlu, 2001; Cates & Rhymer, 2003; Ma & Xu, 2004; Minato & Yanase,

1984; Satake & Amato, 1995; Sherman & Wither, 2003; Zakaria & Nordin, 2008). When the research on

mathematics anxiety (Brady & Bowd, 2005; Brown, Westenskow, & Moyer-Packenham, 2011; Gresham, 2007;

Jackson, 2008; Liu, 2008; Tooke & Lindstrom, 1998; Uusimaki & Nason, 2004; Vinson, 2001) is reviewed, it is

observed that the majority of students and pre-service teachers have mathematics anxiety, and various mathematical

materials and manipulatives (Vinson, 2001) are used and mathematics teaching courses (Gresham, 2007) are

organized in order to reduce this anxiety level.

ISSN 1436-4522 (online) and 1176-3647 (print). This article of the Journal of Educational Technology & Society is available under Creative Commons CC-BY-NDNC 3.0 license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/). For further queries, please contact Journal Editors at ets-editors@ifets.info.

67

When we examine the literature about pre-service teachers’ mathematics anxiety, we observe that it generally

signifies weak mathematical backgrounds, histories and experiences; it seems instinctual that teachers who possess

negative feelings and abilities in any subject domain, such as mathematics, would have trouble in teaching the

subject to students. Mathematics anxiety can be regarded as a pre-existing condition or a negative mathematics trait

that pre-service teachers experience when they begin teacher training programs. Nevertheless, this emphasis on

mathematics anxiety as a pre-existing condition disregards the anxiety that may emerge due to teaching mathematics

or mathematics teaching anxiety (Brown, Westenskow, & Moyer-Packenham, 2011).

While mathematics anxiety is among the fears that students have, it is considered that pre-service teachers may have

both mathematics anxiety and encounter teaching anxiety as they approach the end of their undergraduate period.

Pre-service teachers’ teaching anxiety is of such great significance in mathematics courses that they experience

difficulty in learning and teaching (Peker, 2006). Mathematics teaching anxiety can be described as pre-service and

in-service teachers’ moods of tension and anxiety emerging in teaching mathematical concepts, theories and formulas

or problem solving (Peker, 2009). Mathematics teaching anxiety can be unrelated to an individual’s insufficient

mathematics history or background. Thus, a person may not encounter mathematics anxiety and may be very selfreliant about their mathematics knowledge, but they may encounter mathematics teaching anxiety because they are

not self-reliant about their ability to teach children the mathematics that they know (Brown, Westenskow, & Moyer

Packenham, 2011). The symptoms of mathematics teaching anxiety may contain intense nervousness, the inability to

concentrate, negative self-talk, being easily distressed by noises, being unable to hear the students, and sweaty palms

(Peker, 2009). Elmas (2010) found that mathematics anxiety, traineeship, lack of self-confidence and content

knowledge were the factors that caused mathematics teaching anxiety in pre-service teachers. Peker and Halat (2009)

researched the effects of mathematical visualization activities formed with WebQuest and spreadsheets on preservice elementary teachers’ mathematics teaching anxiety. From this research, it was observed that WebQuest

activities were more effective in reducing pre-service teachers’ teaching anxiety. It is observed that these activities

that affect teaching anxiety levels may be reduced thanks to technological facilities. It was observed that technology

use in mathematics teaching (Berger, 2010; Erbaş & Aydoğan Yenmez, 2011; Güven & Karataş, 2003; Lagrange,

1999; Marshall, Buteau, Jarvis, & Lavicza, 2012; Wong, Yin, Yang, & Cheng, 2011) positively contributed to anxiety

levels experienced by students and teachers. As a result of technological advances, one contribution is the active role

played by Webquest activities in reducing mathematics teaching anxiety (Peker & Halat, 2009).

Ersoy (2005) stated that a teacher’s consciousness level and beliefs have an important effect on not only starting but

also stopping or preventing a reform movement in schools. For this reason, he emphasized that how teachers

perceive and evaluate cognitive tools and new educational technologies from their point of view is among the

important issues that must not be overlooked in a reform movement. That is to say, how mathematics teachers of the

future perceive this technology is an important issue that we face.

Computer literacy and internet use have become a necessity for both educators and students in order for

technological developments to be effectively used in education. On the other hand, the use of computer technologies

has become inevitable for every field of occupation in developed societies, and computer literacy has emerged as an

important skill for individuals in modern society (Yanık, 2010). He stated that it is important to provide coherent

training in computer literacy beginning from the last year of elementary education and continuing with secondary

education, and previously acquired computer knowledge and skills must be developed in university years for the

purpose of research and problem solving (Yazıcı, 2001).

Nowadays, the correct and effective use of technology in the teaching process by teachers contributes to participating

in courses in a productive manner. Application of technology develops a concrete and experimental approach to

mathematics subjects, and enables students to develop more abstract and symbolic skills (Flores, 2002). There are

various researches on the impact of technology on success (Tajuddin, Tarmizi, Konting & Ali, 2009) anxiety

(Uusimaki & Nason (2004), motivation (Nordin, Zakaria, Mohamed & Embi, 2010) and mathematics learning and

teaching activities (Fahlberg-Stojanovska & Trifunov, 2010).

In-depth description and analysis of the influence of technology on mathematics teaching anxiety will be a

significant step. Identifying the main factors that the impact of technology has on mathematics teaching anxiety is

the focus of the research. How technology will affect pre-service teachers’ teaching anxiety is important because it

offers practical information on teacher training. It is easier and more meaningful to provide the required skills to preservice teachers during their university education rather than after they start teaching. This way, we can gather

68

information about the mathematics teaching anxiety levels of pre-service teachers and define variables related to

teaching anxiety. In view of all these factors, the nature of the relationship between technology and mathematics

teaching anxiety has caught the attention of researchers. In this context, the aim of this research is to determine the

relationship between pre-service teachers’ mathematics teaching anxiety and their perceptions of technology use in

mathematics teaching as well as their computer literacy levels.

Method

The nonexperimental correlational research, which is included in the quantitative research approach, was used in the

study. Correlational research involves studies conducted to determine relationships between two or more variables

and to obtain clues about cause and effect (McMillan & Schumacher, 2010).

Sample

This research was conducted with 481 elementary and secondary pre-service mathematics teachers who were

selected using the random sampling method. The sample of the research composed of 320 pre-service teachers who

were studying in four classes in the elementary mathematics teaching program and 161 pre-service teachers who

were studying in five classes in the secondary mathematics teaching program. All the pre-service teachers

volunteered to participate in the research. Table 1 shows the frequency of 463 pre-service teachers who completely

filled all scales out of the 481 pre-service teachers who participated in the study.

Table 1. Frequency of Class Levels and Teaching Area Distribution of Pre-Service Teachers

Teaching Area

Elementary

Secondary

Class Level

f

f

First Class

97 (M:43-F:54)

34(M:15-F:19)

Second Class

65(M:19-F:46)

29(M:9-F:20)

Third Class

76(M:30-F:46)

40(M:17-F:23)

Fourth Class

75(M:36-F:39)

26(M:12-F:14)

Fifth Class

—

21(M:12-F:9)

Total

313 (M:128-F:185)

150 (M:66- F: 84 )

Data collection tools

In the research, three instruments were used namely, (1) the Mathematics Teaching Anxiety Scale (MATAS) to

determine pre-service teachers’ levels of mathematics teaching anxiety, (2) the Perception Scale for Technology Use

in Mathematics Teaching (PSTM) to determine their perceptions regarding technology use in mathematics courses

and (3) the Computer Literacy Scale (CLS) to determine their computer literacy levels. Two factors were taken into

consideration in selecting these three scales: sufficiency of validity and reliability studies and the latest scales in

Turkish language.

MATAS, which was developed by Peker (2006), consists of 23 items in four sub-dimensions with a 5-point Likerttype scale ranging from “1” for “completely disagree” to “5” for “completely agree.” These sub-dimensions are as

follows: anxiety arising from content knowledge (10 items), anxiety arising from self-confidence (6 items), anxiety

arising from attitude towards mathematics teaching (4 items) and anxiety arising from teaching knowledge (3 items).

There are 10 negative items in MATAS and these items are scored by reverse calculation. Peker (2006) found that the

reliability coefficient (Cronbach’s alpha) of the scale was .91. The internal consistency coefficients for each

dimension were .90 for the dimension of anxiety arising from content knowledge, .83 for the dimension of anxiety

arising from self-confidence, .71 for the dimension of anxiety arising from attitude towards mathematics teaching

and .61 for the dimension of anxiety arising from teaching knowledge. In this study, the reliability coefficient

obtained for the complete instrument was .92. Regarding each dimension, the reliabilities were found to be .87 for

anxiety arising from content knowledge, .84 for anxiety arising from self-confidence, .88 for anxiety arising from

69

attitude towards mathematics teaching and .80 for anxiety arising from teaching knowledge. In the scale, the total

score and the scores achieved in each dimension were also computed. The highest score that could be achieved on

the Mathematics Teaching Anxiety Scale is 115, whereas the lowest score is 23 and the average score is 69. The

highest score in the content knowledge sub-dimension is 50, the lowest score is 10, and the average score is 30. The

highest score in the self-confidence sub-dimension is 30, the lowest score is 6, and the average score is 18. The

highest score in the attitude towards mathematics teaching sub-dimension is 20, the lowest score is 4, and the

average score is 12. The highest score in the teaching knowledge sub-dimension is 15, the lowest score is 3, and the

average score is 9. The high scores obtained in this study indicate that the pre-service teachers’ mathematics teaching

anxiety was high. Table 2 shows the number of items in MATAS sub-dimensions, sample items for each dimension

and reliability coefficients.

Sub-dimensions of

MATAS

Content knowledge

Self-confidence

Attitude towards

mathematics teaching

Teaching knowledge

Table 2. The details of sub-dimensions of MATAS

Number

Sample items

of items

10

In my teaching profession, I think I feel desperate while

teaching mathematics subjects

6

I feel competent about solving mathematics problems

while teaching.

4

I think teaching mathematics subjects is fun for me.

3

I can make use of special teaching strategy knowledge and

skills while teaching mathematics.

Reliability

coefficient

.87

.84

.88

.80

PSTM, which was developed by Ö ksüz, Ak and Uça (2009), consists of 73 items in three sub-dimensions with a 5point Likert-type scale ranging from “1” for “completely disagree” to “5” for “completely agree.” The three subdimensions are requirement, advantages and disadvantages. The internal consistency coefficient of the scale was .96

(Ö ksüz, Ak, & Uça 2009). The internal consistency coefficients obtained for the sub-dimensions were .95 for

requirement, .96 for advantages; and .84 for disadvantages. In this research, the internal consistency coefficient of

the scale was found to be .94 while the internal consistency coefficients obtained for each of the sub-dimensions

were .88, .93 and .61 respectively. The highest score that can be achieved in the scale is 365 whereas the lowest is 73.

Items in the disadvantages sub-scale are done by reverse calculation. The total score that can be achieved by reverse

grading of negative items and high score for each dimension define positive perception, while low score defines

negative perception. Table 3 shows the number of items in PSTM sub-dimensions, sample items for each dimension

and reliability coefficients.

Sub-dimensions of

PSTM

Requirement

Advantages

Disadvantages

Table 3. The details of sub-dimensions of PSTM

Number of

Sample items

items

29

The Following Software Are Required for Mathematics

Teaching; “specific mathematics software (Sketchpad,

Cabri etc.)”

34

Use of technology in mathematics teaching facilitates

teaching with a constructivist approach

10

Use of technology in mathematics teaching causes a waste

of time.

Reliability

coefficient

.88

.93

.61

CLS, which was developed by Kay (1990) and translated into Turkish by Kılınç and Salman (2006), was used to

determine the pre-service mathematics teachers’ computer literacy levels. The Computer Literacy Scale consists of

24 items with a 7-point Likert-type scale ranging from “1” for “strongly disagree” to “7” for “strongly agree.” The

scale is composed of four dimensions, namely basic skills, application software skill, programming and computer

awareness. Kılınç and Salman (2006) found that the internal consistency coefficients obtained for the sub-dimensions

were .91 for basic skills, .93 for application software skills .91 for programming and .94 for computer awareness.

Based on the data of this research, the internal consistency coefficient of the scale was found to be .92 while the

internal consistency coefficients for each of the dimensions were .89, .88, .88 and .81, respectively. The highest score

that can be achieved is 168 whereas the lowest score is 24. In this study the above average scores signify that the pre70

service teachers’ computer literacy levels were positive. Table 4 shows the number of items in the CLS subdimensions, sample items for each dimension and reliability coefficients.

Table 4. The details of sub-dimensions of CLS

Sub-dimensions of

CLS

Basic skills

Application software

skill

Programming

Computer awareness

Number

items

6

6

6

6

Sample items

I can format a new diskette

I can teach someone to use a computer software package

Reliability

coefficient

.89

.88

I can write a computer program in BASIC or Logo

I can identify the basic parts of computers and their functions

.88

.81

Data analysis

The analysis was performed for 463 pre-service teachers who completed a …

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