Pre-service accounting teachers’ confidence and motivation in doing mathematics




Pre-service teachers, Accounting, Mathematics, Confience, Motivation, Teaching


The purpose of the study was to determine pre-service accounting teachers’ perceptions of the confidence and motivation in doing mathematics in Bachelor of Education Accounting courses at a higher education institution, with the aim of informing higher education heutagogy as it relates to teaching and learning in accounting. This study included a convenience sample of 255 preservice accounting teachers from a higher education institution in South Africa and a purposive sample of 18 students was drawn. Data collection was done through questionnaires and an interview schedule. A sequential explanatory design and sampling were employed. Data were analysed using SPSS for quantitative data and the interviews were transcribed and analysed qualitatively. The mean scores are above average (positive) for the cohort, however, there were numerous students with low scores in the effectance motivation and confidence scales. A more positive attitude towards effectance motivation in doing mathematics came from Indian, English and suburban respondents (p<.050). These students were not discouraged by difficult mathematical problems and are thus motivated by the challenges of mathematics. The interviews showed that parents positively influenced these students to persevere when faced with challenging mathematics problems. The results show no significant differences in the confidence in doing mathematics subscale (p >.050) in relation to gender, age, race group, mother tongue, Grade 12 mathematics, accounting module or location of schools. This finding runs counter to interview responses where 10 of the participants did not believe that they had a lot of selfconfidence when it comes to mathematical accounting calculations and could not do advanced work without seeking help from others, compared with 6 participants who agreed that they had a lot of selfconfidence when it comes to mathematical accounting calculations and could do advanced work without seeking help from others. In third-year accounting, strong significant connections were found between motivation in doing mathematics, confidence in doing mathematics and achievement in Accounting 420.


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How to Cite

Mkhize, M. (2021). Pre-service accounting teachers’ confidence and motivation in doing mathematics. Perspectives in Education, 39(4), 135-155.



Research articles