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Research & Studies

Reducing Mathematics Anxiety Among Students with Pseudo-dyscalculia in Ibadan Through Numerical Cognition and Emotional Freedom Techniques: Moderating Effect of Mathematics Efficacy

Citation (APA Style): Aremu, A. O., & Taiwo, A. K. (2014). Reducing mathematics anxiety among students with pseudo-dyscalculia in Ibadan through numerical cognition and emotional freedom techniques: Moderating effect of mathematics efficacy. African Journal for the Psychological Studies of Social Issues, 17(1), 113—129.


Anxiety in mathematics is a critical challenge facing secondary school students in Nigeria. Previous studies with focus on the improvement of this challenge are scarce. Specifically, there is a paucity of studies using numerical cognition and Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) in solving the above challenges. This study therefore investigated the effects of numerical cognition and EFT on mathematics anxiety among non-science students with pseudo-dyscalculia in Oyo State. Pretest, posttest, control group quasi-experimental design was adopted for the study. One hundred and two students were sampled through simple random sampling. Mathematics Anxiety Scale (alpha = 0.89), Mathematics Efficacy (alpha = 0.86), and Pseudo-Dyscalculia Scale (alpha = 0.93) were administered to obtain data for the study. Therapeutic packages used for the intervention were numerical cognition and EFT. Seven hypotheses were tested at 0.01 level of significance. Data were analyzed using analysis of covariance (ANCOVA). The study revealed main effect of treatment on mathematics anxiety; F (2,109) = 173.020, p < 0.01. Meridian-based intervention (EFT) was more effective (mean = 33.78) than numerical cognition (mean = 45.35) in the reduction of mathematics anxiety. There was a significant main effect F(1, 109 = 21.00, p < 0.01), interactive effect F(2, 109 = 6.116, p < 0.01). of mathematics efficacy and treatment of mathematics anxiety of the participants. The two packages were effective in reducing mathematics anxiety among the participants. Based on the findings, educational psychologists, counseling psychologists, and other educational related bodies could adopt the packages for educational diagnosis to improve academic performance of students with academic phobia.

Key Words

Numerical Cognition, Emotional Freedom (Meridian-based Intervention), Mathematics Efficacy, Mathematics Anxiety, Pseudo-dyscalculia.