A framework for studying the heterogeneity of risk factors in math anxiety

Orly Rubinsten, Hadas Marciano, Hili Eidlin Levy, Lital Daches Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Math anxiety is a prevalent disorder which affects many people worldwide. Here, we draw together ample evidence to suggest a dynamic developmental bio-psycho-social model. The model highlights the complex pathways towards the development of math anxiety, with a focus on dynamism. That is, math anxiety is viewed here as a dynamic interplay between environmental (parenting style, as well as social style including teachers’ attitude, instruction strategies and wider social effects) and intrinsic factors (i.e., neuro-cognitive and genetic predispositions, including brain malfunctions, heritability, predisposition towards general anxiety) and basic numerical cognition and affective factors. The model predicts that the dynamic interplay between these factors can either prevent or promote math anxiety’s effects on the development of heterogeneous symptoms. Considering the universal nature of math anxiety, a systematic description of the vulnerability factors that contribute to the development of math anxiety is vital. Such information may be of particular value in informing the design of preventive interventions as well as of specific intervention tools.

Original languageEnglish
Article number291
JournalFrontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
StatePublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Rubinsten, Marciano, Eidlin Levy and Daches Cohen.


  • Dynamic perspective
  • Framework
  • Heterogeneity
  • Math anxiety
  • Risk factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


Dive into the research topics of 'A framework for studying the heterogeneity of risk factors in math anxiety'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this