### Abstract:

The purpose of this study is to investigate the
attitudes toward mathematics of prospective elementary
teachers and their basic understanding of mathematics.
Two hundred fourteen subjects, representing prospective teachers from Oregon State University and Western
Oregon State College participated in this study. The
responses of this total population to the 20 items on
the Revised Mathematics Attitude Scale, 74 items on the
Iowa Test of Basic Skills, and demographic information
supplied by the participants provided the data for
this study.
An Analysis of Variance statistical design was used
to determine the significance of difference between the
prospective teachers' attitudes toward mathematics, their basic understanding of mathematics and the following
factors: high school graduation class size, college
class level, high school and college mathematics back
ground. The significant difference between sex and attitudes toward mathematics was determined by a t-test,
as were the differences between the two schools' prospective teachers with respect to attitude and basic understanding of mathematics. The Pearson Correlation coefficient
was employed to determine the relationship of attitudes
toward mathematics and basic understanding of mathematics.
Within the limitations of the study the following
major conclusions were drawn:
1. Prospective teachers have relatively positive
attitudes toward mathematics.
2. There is a significant relationship between
attitudes toward mathematics and basic under
standing of mathematics of prospective teachers.
3. There were no significant differences between
prospective teachers at Oregon State University
and Western Oregon State College with respect
to attitudes toward mathematics and basic under
standing of mathematics.
4. There was a significant difference in attitudes
toward mathematics and high school and college
mathematics background and sex of prospective
teachers. 5. There were no significant differences in attitudes toward mathematics and students from
various ages of high school graduation classes
and college class levels.
6. There was a significant difference in basic
understanding of mathematics and prospective
teachers' high school mathematics background
and their college class level.
7. There was no significant difference in basic
understanding of mathematics and students from
various sizes of high school graduation classes,
college class levels and sex of the prospective teachers.