Books by Sheila Tobias

Banishing Math AnxietyCo-authored with Victor Piercey, Banishing Math Anxiety is designed for students who may have given up on learning math. The book reinforces the idea that math learning may begin in the classroom but it doesn't end there. It presents real world applications of math such as pre-employment testing, math applications on the job, debt management, taxes, and more. Piercey recently joined the faculty at Ferris State University as Assistant Professor of Mathematics. Order the book now.

Science Teaching as a ProfessionThe National Science Teachers Association has just published a new book by Sheila Tobias and veteran science teacher Anne Baffert. The title is Science Teaching as a Profession: Why It Isn't, How It Could Be. Based upon their communications with nearly 500 science teachers across the United States, Tobias and Baffert explore what is needed to reduce attrition by high school science teachers at a time when the U.S. is facing increasing competition. Order the book now.

Women, Militarism, and WarExamines closely the construction of male and female identity around the theme of collective violence. Why did such violence get "moralized" for men in the case of warfare—but not for women? Presents alternatives to both "business as usual" thinking and excessively utopian or naive feminist accounts. Edited by Jane Bethke Elshtain and Sheila Tobias, with contributions from the editors and Amy Swerdlow, Carol Cohn, Mary C. Segers, Linda K. Kerber, D'Ann Campbell, Kathleen Jones, Joyce Berkman, Cynthia Enloe, Janet Radcliffe Richards and Sara Ruddick. Available on

Overcoming Math AnxietySheila Tobias first wrote Overcoming Math Anxiety in 1978. In her updated version, published by W. W. Norton in 1994 (and in paperback in 1995), she enlarges on her analysis of the attitude and approach variables that interfere with students' performance in college-level mathematics. Their problem, she finds, is not a failure of intellect but a failure of nerve. Above all, she challenges the notion that "math anxiety" is a disability. "Math Anxiety" can be overcome. Available in bookstores.

Succeed with MathTobias' second book, Succeed with Math, tells teachers and students (college age and older) how to approach mathematics and master it without anxiety. Her books and her talks are particularly pertinent to the issue of access for minorities and women. She brings a video tape of a math anxiety session along. The book incorporates real-world math examples from social science, biology, economics, and business. Available on and

Not DumbIn an effort to disentangle the many variables that account for failure and/or unwillingness of large numbers of college students to pursue mathematics and science, Sheila Tobias has engaged otherwise successful outsiders in a series of experiments across disciplinary boundaries. She finds that barriers to learning are the result of "disciplinary cultures." Available from Sheila Tobias, P.O. Box 43758, Tucson AZ 85733-3758, at $5.00 for single copies, $3.00 per copy in orders of 15 or more. Checks only.

Breaking the Science BarrierThis book explains how to succeed in college math and science classes. It explores the fundamentals of understanding science and the kinds of study and thinking that college professors expect. The meanings of terms in science, how understanding changes from high school to college, and making connections among facts are also covered. Available on and

Revitalizing Undergraduate ScienceEvery wave of mathematics and science education reform obliterates the one before and leaves little lasting change in its wake. Available from and A computer program called "A Department-Based Audit to Improve the Quality of Undergraduate Instruction in the Sciences" is also available as a free downloadable .zip file. The program comes without support and without warrantee.

The Hidden CurriculumA collection of narratives about innovations in exam content, exam format, exam ecology, and grading practices from 160 teaching faculty in colleges and universities. Demonstrates that while faculty may not test what they value, in time students come to value what they test, and that an image of science emerges from traditionally constructed tests that disserves "second tier" students and science majors. Plenum Press, 1997; in bookstores or by ordering directly from Plenum Press, 233 Spring St. New York 10013.

Rethinking Science as a CareerIn this study of scientists in mid-career and young scientists on the job market, Sheila Tobias and her co-authors, Daryl Chubin and Kevin Aylesworth, propose new training of undergraduate and graduate majors in science, a reconsideration of the master's degree in science, and "restructuring demand" so that young people of talent can expect to have the work they deserve. Available from and

Faces of FeminismIn her narrative history of the second wave of feminism, Sheila Tobias concludes that the "Movement" with a capital M may be over, but the "movement" of American women into power and into the mainstream is unstoppable. How this came about, the future of feminism, and why feminists were so loathe to abandon President Clinton in 1997-98 the topics of talks (1), (2), and (3). In (4), she goes beyond and beneath the statistics and examines the underlying paradigmatic "ideology" of access and advancement of women in science. (Westview Press, 1997; paperback, 1998). Available on and

Peoples Guide to National DefenseOriginally published in 1982, The People's Guide to National Defense is a guide for activists, scholars, and ordinary citizens. Edited by Sheila Tobias and Jean Bethke Elstain. The book is now out of print, but is available in limited quantities on