Next Article in Journal
Music Education for All: The raison d’être of Music Schools
Next Article in Special Issue
Myths of Early Math
Previous Article in Journal
Leading the Academic Department: A Mother–Daughter Story
Previous Article in Special Issue
Against the Odds: Insights from a Statistician with Dyscalculia
Open AccessArticle

The Myth That Only Brilliant People Are Good at Math and Its Implications for Diversity

1
Department of Psychology, New York University, New York, NY 10003, USA
2
Department of Philosophy, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544, USA
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(2), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8020065
Received: 1 March 2018 / Revised: 25 April 2018 / Accepted: 26 April 2018 / Published: 4 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dispelling Myths about Mathematics)
A common misconception about math is that it requires raw intellectual talent or “brilliance.” Only students who possess this sort of brilliance are assumed to be capable of success in math-related subjects. This harmful myth has far-reaching consequences for the success of girls and children from ethnic-minority backgrounds in these subjects. Because women and minorities are stereotyped as lacking brilliance, the myth that success in math requires this trait is a barrier that students from these groups have to overcome. In the first part of this paper, we detail the pervasiveness of this myth and explore its relation to gender and race gaps in math and beyond. In the second part, we highlight some potential sources of this myth in children’s everyday experiences and offer some strategies for debunking it. View Full-Text
Keywords: brilliance; giftedness; stereotypes; gender gaps; race gaps; mindsets brilliance; giftedness; stereotypes; gender gaps; race gaps; mindsets
MDPI and ACS Style

Chestnut, E.K.; Lei, R.F.; Leslie, S.-J.; Cimpian, A. The Myth That Only Brilliant People Are Good at Math and Its Implications for Diversity. Educ. Sci. 2018, 8, 65.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop