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The Abbreviated Science Anxiety Scale: Psychometric properties, gender differences and associations with test anxiety, general anxiety and science achievement.

Published version
Peer-reviewed

Type

Article

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Authors

Szűcs, Denes 
Moustafa, Ahmed A 

Abstract

Science anxiety refers to students' negative emotions about learning science. Across two studies, we investigated the psychometric properties of the newly developed Abbreviated Science Anxiety Scale (ASAS), which was adapted from the modified Abbreviated Math Anxiety Scale (m-AMAS) (Carey E., 2017). Using a sample of students in grades 7 to 10 (N = 710), Study 1 reported a two-factor structure of the ASAS (learning science anxiety and science evaluation anxiety) and negative associations between the ASAS factors and science achievement. Study 2 replicated this two-factor model in students in grades 11 and 12 (N = 362) and found that students in the "Arts" track were more anxious about science than those in "Sciences" track. Both studies consistently reported positive inter-correlations between the ASAS factors, with good internal reliabilities and modest meaningful associations with test anxiety and general anxiety, suggesting that science anxiety might be a distinct construct. Further, female students had higher science anxiety (especially science evaluation anxiety) than male students, even when test anxiety and general anxiety were considered in models. In summary, the ASAS is a brief, valid, and reliable instrument that can be used to guide and improve science education.

Description

Keywords

Achievement, Adolescent, Anxiety, Female, Humans, Male, Mathematics, Models, Psychological, Psychometrics, Science, Sex Characteristics, Sex Factors, Students, Test Anxiety, Test Anxiety Scale

Journal Title

PLoS One

Conference Name

Journal ISSN

1932-6203
1932-6203

Volume Title

16

Publisher

Public Library of Science (PLoS)
Sponsorship
James S McDonnell Foundation (220020370)
Qatar National Research Fund (NPRP12C-0828-190023)