The three-factor model: A study of common features in students' attitudes towards studying and learning science and mathematics in the three countries of the North Calotte region
Keywords:attitudes, survey, comparative study, confirmatory factor analysis, secondary school
This study investigated common features of students' attitudes towards studying science and mathematics in comprehensive and secondary schools in three countries. Data were obtained by conducting a survey (N = 581) in Norway, Finland and Russia. A Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) provided a model with a three-factor solution consisting of factors: the perception of the teacher, anxiety towards science and mathematics, and motivation. The results suggest that most students are motivated to study sciences and mathematics. Data analysis indicate gender differences in attitudes to students' future studies and career plans. Most girls recognized the importance of these subjects for their future studies and careers, while boys showed more interest than girls in local career opportunities in industry. Teachers have a significant role in directing students' attitudes toward science and mathematics. Students experienced that the teachers who use innovative teaching approaches, both motivate and reduce anxiety, in their learning process.