Findings from recent studies suggest that students’ pathways into mathematics-related careers begin as early as middle school when students are forming lasting self-perceptions of their academic abilities. Middle school is also a time when students begin making choices about future coursework in math, science, and technology that will have long-term implications for their academic and career achievements. Because important self-efficacy beliefs are forming and young adolescents are making decisions that impact career choice, it is important to provide support for students early in their schooling to maximize student potential and consideration of mathematics education and mathematics-related careers. Supporting self-efficacy for math is important for most middle school students but may be crucial for girls who often experience significant declines in their feelings of competence in this domain. Middle school teachers have an opportunity to support student learning beyond the academic curriculum, and this article describes how a self-efficacy intervention can support important skills, attitudes, and dispositions necessary for mathematics achievement and consideration of mathematics-related careers.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology