• Duration
    3 Weeks
  • Location
  • Mode
  • Fees
    Fully Subsidised

As part of the Literacy and Numeracy Series, learn to develop your confidence and transform mathematics anxiety into numeracy success.

Addressing Mathematics Anxiety is a 3 part webinar series that aims to reduce teacher and student anxiety and stress in mathematics to improve student understanding and improve numeracy outcomes.

Addressing Mathematics Anxiety will support school teachers, middle and teacher leaders to address mathematics anxiety in themselves as well as their students. Learnings will support teachers and leaders to build better mathematics foundations to implement numeracy improvement plans.

Through this 3 part series you will:

  • explore theory and research supporting a multidisciplinary approach to addressing mathematics anxiety
  • delve into the impact of the symptoms of mathematics anxiety and the impact on learning/teaching in the short-term
  • engage with research on the causes of mathematics anxiety and learn to understand their impact on longer-term learning and teaching
  • participate in evidence-based discussions and strategies for addressing the symptoms of mathematics anxiety for both students and teachers
  • collaborate with peers to reflect on how the culture of mathematics at their school is similar or different to the context of yours
  • discuss concepts related to mathematical resilience including research about growth mindset interventions, taking risks and reducing uncertainty intolerance
  • build your capacity to support students with mathematics anxiety
  • leave feeling empowered to use coping strategies and techniques to approach real-life, classroom teaching and learning anxiety.


Designed for Victorian government school teachers, leaders and aspiring leaders, particularly at the primary level.

If you are from a non-government school and are interested in participating, refer to our expression of interest process.


The webinar series will be delivered by Dr Sarah Buckley and Dr Catherine Pearn.

Dr Sarah Buckley is a Senior Research Fellow at the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER). Her research focuses on engagement, motivation and emotion in learning, particularly in mathematics and addresses how mathematics anxiety negatively impacts learning and teaching.

With a focus on identifying the symptoms, causes and companions of mathematics anxiety, Sarah has worked on numerous research projects investigating equity and engagement in STEM and has driven initiatives designed to address mathematics anxiety in schools and in preservice teachers. Sarah also leads the Mathematics Anxiety and Engagement Strategy (MAES) at Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER). Sarah also works on a number of large-scale international assessments including the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) and the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA).

Dr Catherine Pearn is a lecturer and researcher at the University of Melbourne’s School of Psychological Sciences. Her research focuses on the cognitive and neural mechanisms underlying language learning and processing. Catherine has published several academic papers on mathematics anxiety and teaches courses on cognitive psychology, neuropsychology and language processing. She has received several awards and grants for her research, including the prestigious Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Award.

Over 1 month, you will engage in and contribute to:

  • introductory pre-reading (approximately half an hour)
  • three online webinars (1 hour 45 minutes each)
  • post-webinar tasks and reflections (approximately 2 hours).

To successfully complete this program, you will need to attend all 3 webinars, and complete the pre-and-post-webinar tasks and reflections.

You will:

  • develop an understanding of how mathematics anxiety influences cognitive processes and impacts on mathematics development
  • develop an understanding of the significance of utilising both educational and psychological approaches to effectively address mathematics anxiety
  • be able to draw on evidence-based strategies and resources to address the causes of mathematics anxiety and facilitate mathematical resilience
  • learn about the culture of mathematics at your school and how this might impact on numeracy improvement plans.

You’ll develop the skills to:

  • link coping strategies with the different ways that mathematics anxiety presents in students/colleagues
  • analyse case studies and apply learning to develop a plan of action
  • identify school climate barriers to students realising their potential in numeracy across all areas of the curriculum.

Fully subsidised by the Department of Education for Victorian government school participants.

Last updated 24 August 2023