Survey Shows 82% of U.S. Students in Grades 7-10 Are Fearful of Math, Risking America’s Ability to Compete for STEM Jobs

Math and Coding Continue to Grow as In-Demand Job Skills – Cuemath Offers Free Math Help

According to a recent survey, 82% of U.S. students surveyed across grades 7-10 are fearful of math. (Photo: Business Wire)

BENGALURU, India--()--U.S. students’ fear of math is accelerating, according to a recent survey gauging student confidence in their math abilities, proficiency and correlation between perceptions of math and performance. Conducted by Cuemath, a Google-backed one-on-one online personalized math and coding tutoring service accredited by, survey results show that approximately 82% of students between Grades 7 and 10 struggle with apprehension around math learning.

The survey finds that fear of math increases as students move from middle school to high school. And the correlation between perception of math and performance becomes more significant in higher grades. In Grade 7, one in four students has negative perceptions about math concepts and needs additional intervention; this number increases to one in three in Grade 10. With a sample size of approximately 900 non-Cuemath students, the survey showed a growing gap between students and math abilities.

While math confidence has always been an underlying issue in the U.S., the pandemic and at-home learning amplified the issue, accelerating loss of interest and fear. More than half of public-school K-12 teachers said in a recent study1 that the pandemic has resulted in a “significant” learning loss. This comes at a time when the need for mastery of math fundamentals is at an all-time high. Future jobs are dependent on a sound understanding of math, leading more students and parents to look for outside resources such as tutoring to help children catch up and gain confidence.

To bridge this gap, Cuemath announced access to its guided math curriculum and exercises at no cost to qualifying K-12 students. The “One Billion Math Minds” program aims to grow math tutoring access and equity regardless of student location, economic ability or background.

Highlighting the findings, Manan Khurma, math teacher as well as founder and CEO of Cuemath said, "Math skills are foundational for life and career success.”

“Cuemath believes every child can develop their own sense of comfort for math,” Khurma added. “Many students just focus on the answer to a math problem without fully grasping the larger concept. There is a vital need for newer, more innovative teaching models that can promote intuitive learning. At Cuemath, we aim to make that foundation solid enough to tackle the most difficult math equations and create the problem solvers of tomorrow."

Some of the key highlights from the survey are:

  • Math proficiency decreases in higher-grade classes – Well over half of students in Grade 7 seem to be proficient in basic math concepts such as numbers, applied math, algebra, geometry and mensuration. However, this drops down to just over a quarter of all students in Grade 9.
  • Grade 7 students are inclined toward and enthusiastic about math, but motivation levels drop as they move towards higher-level classes. The confidence levels of students in Grade 10 drop by 9% compared to Grade 7.
  • Going from grade 7 to 8 sees a rise (up 11%) in negative perceptions toward math for girls. Going from grade 8 to 9 sees an increase in negative perceptions for boys, a difference of 20%.
  • Fear for math continues - 82% of the students surveyed across grades 7-10 are fearful of math. Only two in ten students were confident about their math ability. This could be due to challenging concepts and existing methods of teaching.

Cuemath has been globally recognized for its award-winning math curriculum, designed by experts from Harvard, Stanford, Cambridge, and the India Institute of Technology (IIT). Cuemath is one of the top 50 global education companies and became a Google for Education partner in 2021.

The organization utilizes a curriculum that teaches math visually and focuses on real-world examples rather than abstract math concepts. It demonstrates how math works, making it easy for children to grasp concepts deeply and intuitively. The curriculum is highly intuitive and uses visuals, games, puzzles, simulations and innovative technology, like whiteboards and GeoGebra, which makes math easy and fun for students of all ages and levels.

About Cuemath

Designed with input from math experts at Harvard, Stanford, Cambridge and Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT), Cuemath is the math support you wish you had as a child. It combines adaptive and visual learning techniques with best-in-class curriculum to support accelerated math skill-building, intuition and aptitude. Cuemath has been used by more than 200,000 students across 20+ countries, giving K-12 students a solid foundation in math, coding and logic to create the independent thinkers and invincible problem solvers we need to fill future STEM careers. The Bangalore-based company is backed by Sequoia Capital and Alphabet’s CapitalG. Learn more at

1 Closing the Learning Gap: How frontline educators want to address lost learning due to COVID-19


Media contact:
Heidi Murphy
(773) 531-5005

Release Summary

U.S. students’ fear of math is accelerating, according to a recent survey gauging student confidence in their math abilities, proficiency and more.


Media contact:
Heidi Murphy
(773) 531-5005