Linking critical thinking disposition, cognitive flexibility and achievement: Math anxiety's mediating role

GÜNER P., Gokce S.

JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH, vol.114, no.5, pp.458-473, 2021 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 114 Issue: 5
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/00220671.2021.1975618
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, IBZ Online, Periodicals Index Online, ABI/INFORM, Applied Science & Technology Source, EBSCO Education Source, Education Abstracts, Educational research abstracts (ERA), ERIC (Education Resources Information Center), Index Islamicus, MLA - Modern Language Association Database, Psycinfo
  • Page Numbers: pp.458-473
  • Keywords: Cognitive flexibility, critical thinking disposition, math anxiety, math achievement, mediating role, structural equation modeling, ACADEMIC SELF-CONCEPT, MATHEMATICS ANXIETY, GENDER-DIFFERENCES, ELEMENTARY-SCHOOL, WORKING-MEMORY, VALUE BELIEFS, STUDENTS, CONFIDENCE, ATTITUDES, EFFICACY
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: No


The purpose of this study was to investigate the interplays among the critical thinking disposition, cognitive flexibility, math anxiety and math achievement with structural equation modeling and determine the degree of the mediating effect of math anxiety in primary, middle and high schools. Within the scope, we also focused on the predicting variables of math achievement and compared the general tendency of these variables by gender, school type and grade level. The participants of the study were 1628 students from grades 4, 8 and 12. While critical thinking disposition and cognitive flexibility had a significant and positive effect both among themselves and on math achievement, math anxiety had a significant and negative effect on all these variables in the models. Although math anxiety has a partial mediating effect on math achievement at middle school and high school levels, it shows no such effect in primary school.