Physics Alive

Physics Alive is the podcast where host, Brad Moser, Ph.D., sparks new life into the physics classroom. Each episode supports and shares the many forward-thinking developments that have come from physics education research and inspiring educators. Brad speaks with teachers who employ innovative and active learning styles, researchers on the frontiers of physics education, catalysts for change on important social issues in the STEM community, and students who want the most out of their education.


episode 17: Math Shame and Anxiety

In this episode, I explore the shame and anxiety brought on by math. I think this is widespread experience, from those individuals who struggle to understand “simple” mathematics to those who struggle to understand “complex” mathematics. Sometimes, shame can be motivating, but largely I think it is debilitating. The shame message is unconsciously passed on by media, peers, and even faculty.  In the world of education, we can reframe our responses to students' challenges with math, recognize and acknowledge the pervasiveness of shame and anxiety, and help construct healthy mindsets and confidence.  We can begin to undo generations of math shaming.


Articles and resources mentioned in the episode:

  • "Americans Need to Get Over Their Fear of Math" by Sian Beilock
  • "The Myth Fueling Math Anxiety" by Sarah Sparks
  • Liberation Math, website by Angela Vierling-Claassen


 2021-04-30  33m