Do Prior Knowledge of Advanced Mathematics Influence Academic Confidence of Students Taking Pre-university Chemistry Courses


The relationship between Chemistry and Mathematics are directly proportional in the perspective of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education. This study investigates the relationship between prior advanced mathematical knowledge attained in high school could predict the outcome of student’s overall confidence in studying Pre-University Chemistry courses. Mathematics is often perceived as a subject that bridges and connects scientific concepts including Chemistry. Most students, however, struggle with the transition from mathematics to chemistry due to wide disparities between the two theoretically but a very slim margin in terms of using mathematical applications into learning STEM subjects, particularly chemistry. This paper uses a mixed-method approach that involved quantitative surveys using questionnaires and selected qualitative interviews using Pre-University students as research samplings. Preliminary findings found positive significant correlation between students’ mathematics background played indicative confidence levels in Pre-University Chemistry. Most participants agreed that good mathematical skills in high school play major role in shaping their confidence in Pre-University Chemistry including the integration of mathematical equations, algebra and certain calculus application would support their understanding within the chemical concepts and crucial for their overall understanding in the subject. This research findings also suggest that there is a need of a more integrated approach by educators in teaching mathematics and chemistry at high school level with primary emphasizing the interconnections between the two disciplines by providing sufficient support in order to enhance greater confidence and competence level.

Author Information
Raymond Hee Kok Keong, University of Nottingham, United Kingdom

Paper Information
Conference: ACE2023
Stream: Learning Experiences

This paper is part of the ACE2023 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Keong R. (2024) Do Prior Knowledge of Advanced Mathematics Influence Academic Confidence of Students Taking Pre-university Chemistry Courses ISSN: 2186-5892 The Asian Conference on Education 2023: Official Conference Proceedings
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon