Math Success

Math Success

Students who are successful in other subjects often have difficulty with math. Reasons vary from one person to the next. Some suffer from math anxiety or have a math phobia, but for most it’s a matter of not knowing how to study math.

Math anxiety is one of the most frustrating obstacles to math success. A student may do all the "right" things—work hard, pay attention in class, do homework—and still not perform well on tests and quizzes. An internalized notion of "I can’t do math" prevents these students from being successful. has some excellent tips and information about how to cope with math anxiety.

A major reason many students don’t succeed in math is because they lack good study skills. Students tend to study math the same way they study other subjects. But math requires the use of analytic reasoning and critical thinking skills. It’s not enough to just read and understand concepts—students must also be able to apply those concepts to solve problems. is an excellent online resource that provides some very specific guidelines about how to study math and do math homework.

Good organization and preparation are also essential for success in math. For instance, the best way to prepare for a math test is to keep up with all homework and assignments as they are presented. As test time nears, all you have to do is review concepts and work some practice problems.

Working with a competent tutor is a good solution for some students struggling with math. The extra one-on-one time and attention can help facilitate understanding and boost confidence. Good candidates for math tutors include private tutoring agencies, retired teachers in the community, and peer tutors.

Online paid tutoring services are also growing in popularity. Two of the best known are and Brainfuse.

One key to overcoming frustration with math is to realize that it’s completely normal and that persistence usually pays off. Don’t give up the instant you realize you’re having trouble understanding a problem. Read the problem again, several times if necessary. If there are terms you don’t understand, look them up. Be determined, and take advantage of easy access to online help.

There are many good sites that provide help for most any math topic. For example, to look up those terms you don’t know, use It gives the definition of math terms used in prealgebra through calculus.

Here are some other good online math resources:

Sites that answer your questions:

Sites that provide instruction:
Graphing Calculator Tutorial
Study Guides and Test-Taking Tips

Sites that provide printable worksheets:
Print Graph Paper

Sites about how math is used in everyday life:

Careers in Math

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