“Math People” Need Not Apply: Mathematics Skill, Math Attitudes, and Gender Among Students and Teachers

Doctoral Dissertation


The aim of this study is to examine possible sources of negative math attitudes as well as some possible effects. The main body of this dissertation are three stand-alone chapters that are designed to be stand-alone academic article. Chapter 2 uses data from the High School Longitudinal Study (HSLS) and lagged-dependent variable and school fixed effects regressions to identify that girls are more likely to have a negative response to a B, C, or D in a math course compared to boys. Chapter 3 uses a series of logistic regressions and data from the High School Longitudinal Study of 2009, and finds that the negative average math attitudes among prospective teachers is merely a byproduct of the gender composition of the field. Chapter 4 uses survey and U.S. classroom observation data from the Elementary Mathematics Study (EMS) and OLS regression to analyze the relationship between mathematics anxiety and time on math; this research provides evidence that math anxious elementary teachers spend less time on math instruction.


Attribute NameValues
Author Brian Fitzpatrick
Contributor Ken Frank, Committee Member
Contributor Elizabeth McClintock, Committee Member
Contributor Mark Berends, Research Director
Contributor Sarah Mustillo, Committee Member
Degree Level Doctoral Dissertation
Degree Discipline Sociology
Degree Name Doctor of Philosophy
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Defense Date
  • 2021-08-12

Submission Date 2021-10-07
Record Visibility Public
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