Epistemological beliefs, motivational values, and study habits among students of tertiary mathematics
Antti Viholainen 1 * , Timo Tossavainen 2 , Janne Gröhn 1
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1 Department of Physics and Mathematics, University of Eastern Finland, Campus of Joensuu, FINLAND2 Department of Health, Education and Technology, Luleå University of Technology, Luleå, SWEDEN* Corresponding Author


Epistemological beliefs about the nature of mathematics affect how a student perceives mathematics in general, whereas high motivation for mathematics gives an individual a personal reason to study the subject. Epistemological beliefs and achievement motives are quite stable at individual level, but previous research has shown that there are significant differences across students with respect to them. This study concerns university students from three different study programs and investigates relations between the students' epistemological beliefs, motivational values, and study habits. The data were collected using a questionnaire and consist of responses from altogether 98 students studying mathematics courses at tertiary level. The study revealed that, when students are grouped according to their study programs, their motivational values vary across these groups more than their epistemological beliefs. The stability of epistemological beliefs was also verified in this study as the strengths of the beliefs hardly correlated with the number of passed credits or self-evaluated study success. However, several sum variables representing the motivational values and epistemological beliefs seem to predict certain study habits in linear regression models. These models can help us to design the teaching of mathematics courses favouring these study habits.


This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Article Type: Research Article

EURASIA J Math Sci Tech Ed, 2023, Volume 19, Issue 5, Article No: em2269


Publication date: 01 May 2023

Online publication date: 06 Apr 2023

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