Staff profile

Dr Thomas Hunt

Associate Professor in Psychology


College of Science and Engineering


School of Human Sciences

Research centre

Human Sciences Research Centre




Kedleston Road, Derby Campus



I am an Associate Professor in Psychology at the College of Health, Psychology and Social Care. 

I lead the Mathematics Anxiety Research Group at

Teaching responsibilities

I contribute to the teaching of a range of modules, including Quantitative Methods and Individual Differences (year two) and Psychology in Education (year three).

In addition, I supervise research projects across a range of programmes.

Professional interests

My professional interests are connected to my research interests. I work with various schools to teach and discuss strategies to reduce maths anxiety in the classroom. I have a particular interest in reducing the achievement gap observed among disadvantaged children. My work also extends to professional areas in which maths anxiety is a key consideration, such as anxiety when carrying out drug dosage calculations.

I am a chartered psychologist and senior fellow of Advance HE. I am also a committee member of the Maths Anxiety Trust and regularly work with organisations such as Learnus UK and National Numeracy.

Research interests

I have a broad range of interests across psychology, but the main focus of my work is within maths education and professional occupations that require number processing (such as drug dosage calculations in nurses and healthcare professionals). I research the interplay between emotion and mathematical processing. This encompasses factors such as maths anxiety, maths resilience, maths confidence, maths self-efficacy, and maths attitudes.

Membership of professional bodies


Recent conferences

Hunt, T. E., Napiorkowska, A., Popa, I-L., & Bagdasar, O. (2022, July). Mathematics teaching anxiety in Romanian pre-service elementary teachers [Presentation]. 3rd International Conference on Developing Mathematical Resilience (online)

Retanal, F., Di Lonardo Burr, S., Xu, C., Bureau, J-F., DiStefano, M., Douglas, H., Hunt, T. E., Lafay, A., LeFevre, J-A., Osana, H. P., Simms, V., Shujie Song, C., Skwarchuk, S-L., Trepiak, P., Wylie, J., & Maloney, E. A. (2022, June). Exploring parent-child interactions around math homework of 8–12-year-old Canadian children. In J. E. Salminen (Chair), Development of math skills - the role of parents and home environment [Symposium]. Mathematical Cognition and Learning Society Conference, Antwerp, Belgium

Hunt, T. E., Napiorkowska, A., Popa, I-L., & Bagdasar, O. (2022, June). Mathematics teaching anxiety in Romanian pre-service elementary teachers. In N. Burrell (Chair), Math and teaching anxiety experienced by preservice and practising elementary school teachers [Symposium]. Mathematical Cognition and Learning Society Conference, Antwerp, Belgium

Hunt, T. E. (2021, Oct.). Measuring mathematics anxiety [Presentation]. British Dyslexia Association Dyscalculia Conference (online)

Sharifi, S., & Hunt, T. E. (2021, June). Students’ feelings of anxiety in online teaching and learning [Poster presentation]. The University of Edinburgh Learning and Teaching Conference (online)

Marshall, E. M., Rowlett, P., Verrier, D., & Hunt, T. E. (2021, June). Can pre-course anxiety & attitudes predict grades? [Paper presentation]. Materials and Engineering Research Institute Conference (online)

Hunt, T. E., & Maloney, E. (2021, May). Understanding the relation between maths anxiety, resilience, and attitudes: Appraisals of previous experiences of maths. In S. Johnston-Wilder (Chair), Understanding cognitive and emotional barriers to learning maths: becoming part of the solution [Symposium]. British Dyslexia Association International Conference (online)

Hunt, T. E. (2021, May). Mathematics anxiety at a global level: Investigating socio-cognitive-affective barriers to maths education [Presentation]. University of Derby Global Challenges Week Conference, Derbyshire, UK (online)

Retanal, F., Di Lonardo Burr, S., Xu, C., Bureau, J.-F., DiStefano, M., Douglas, H., Hunt, T. E., Lafay, A., LeFevre, J.-A., Osana, H. P., Simms, V., Song, S. C., Skwarchuk, S.-L, Trepiak, P., Wylie, J., Maloney, E. A. (2021, May). Children’s math anxiety predicts the overall negativity of the math homework interaction, but parents’ math anxiety does not [Poster presentation]. Association for Psychological Science (APS) Conference (online)

Hunt, T. E. (2021, March). Maths anxiety: How can we measure it and what can we do about it? [Invited workshop presentation]. Derbyshire Educational Psychology Service Annual Conference, Derbyshire, UK (online)

Hunt, T. E. (2019, Nov.). Theoretical and applied approaches to understanding and tackling mathematics anxiety [Presentation]. Derbyshire Primary Maths Conference, Nottingham, U.K

Marshall, E., Hunt, T. E., & Haigney, D. (2019, Sept.). Statistics anxiety: Impact on the study of undergraduate Psychology [Paper presentation]. BPS Psychology of Education Section Annual Conference, Manchester, U.K

Marshall, E., Hunt, T. E., & Haigney, D. (2019, Sept.). The problem with learning statistics [Paper presentation]. Mathematics and Statistics Operations Research Conference, Dublin, Ireland

Hunt, T. E., & Harris, P. (2019, June). Evaluation of maths anxiety in health professional students: a multi-institution sample [Paper presentation]. Singapore Conference on Applied Psychology, Singapore

Hunt, T. E. (2017, March). Mathematics anxiety: Causes, consequences and ways to reduce it [Invited workshop]. Annual LA Bristol SENCo Conference, Bristol, U.K

Hunt, T.E. (2017, March). Mathematics teaching anxiety [Presentation]. 2nd International Conference for Mathematical Resilience, Milton Keynes, U.K

Hunt, T. E. (2016, Nov.). The effect of maths anxiety on performance: A closer look and consideration of the mechanisms that underpin the relationship [Invited presentation]. Conference of Contemporary Research in Mathematics Anxiety and Emotions: Redefining the Field, Manchester, U.K

Hunt, T. E. (2016, Oct.). Mathematics anxiety: Correlates and strategies to reduce it [Invited presentation]. 4th ADHD Foundation conference, Liverpool, U.K

Hunt, T. E., & Sheffield. (2016, June). Reducing maths anxiety in the classroom [Workshop presentation]. 8th national conference of Dyscalculia and Maths Learning Difficulties, London, U.K

Hunt, T. E., & Sheffield, D. (2016, March). Mathematics anxiety: Correlates and brief interventions [Presentation]. Mathematics Resilience Conference, University of Warwick, Coventry, U.K

Stupple, E. J N., Hunt, T. E., Pitchford, M., & Ball, L. (2014, September). Slower isn't always better: Response-times present challenges for the cognitive miserliness account of the Cognitive Reflection Test. In Thinking and reasoning [Symposium]. British Psychological Society Cognitive Psychology Section Annual Conference, Nottingham, U.K

Priest, H., Dent, H., Blincoe, C., Hunt, T., Roberts, P., & Armstrong, C. (2008, Dec). Innovative methodology in the delivery and evaluation of inter-professional education [Poster presentation]. BPS Division of Clinical Psychology Annual Conference, Congress Centre, London, U.K

Hunt, T.E., Sheffield, D., Clark-Carter, D., & Ford, S. (2007). Cognitive intrusions during mathematical problem solving: The relationship with maths anxiety [Paper presentation]. BPS Psychology of Education Section Annual Conference, Stoke-on-Trent, U.K

Experience in industry

I have led various workshops, particularly with schools in the UK and abroad, on the topic of maths anxiety. I regularly work with teachers on strategies to reduce maths anxiety in the classroom.

International experience

I have visited other countries (including Turkey, Uganda, and Romania) to meet with academic colleagues and teachers in local schools to discuss the issue of maths anxiety and ways to tackle it. 

I have also presented at several international conferences and audiences.

In the media

I have published various blogs via different organisations, e.g. National Numeracy and Pearson Education. I have given radio interviews in which I talk about maths anxiety, and appeared in an episode of BBC Radio 4's Bringing up Britain: BBC Radio 4 - Bringing Up Britain, Series 15, Why Does Maths Make Me Anxious?

I have also appeared in various local and national newspapers.

Recent publications

Hunt, T. E., & Maloney, E. A. (2022). Appraisals of previous maths experiences play an important role in maths anxiety. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1-12,

Hunt, T. E., & Tan, M. L. (Eds.). (2022). Applied psychology readings: Selected papers from the Singapore conference on applied psychology 2021. Springer Singapore.   

Batashvili, M., Cipora, K., & Hunt, T. E. (2022). Measurement of mathematics anxiety in an Israeli adult population. Journal of Numerical Cognition, 8(1), 148-165.

Dove, J., Montague, J., & Hunt, T. E. (2021). An exploration of primary school teachers’ maths anxiety using interpretative phenomenological analysis. International Online Journal of Primary Education (IOJPE), 10(1), 32-49.

Hunt, T. E., Simms, V., Cahoon, A., & Muwonge, C. M. (2021). Socio-cognitive-affective barriers to mathematics education in developing nations. In W. Leal Filho., P. Gökçin Özuyar., A. Lange Salvia., A. Marisa Azul., L. Londero Brandli., & T. Wall (Eds), Encyclopaedia of the UN Sustainable Development Goals: Quality Education. Springer.

Petronzi, D., Hunt, T. E. & Sheffield, D. (2021). Interventions to address mathematics anxiety: An overview and recommendations. In S.A . Kiray & E. Tomevska-Ilievska (Eds), Current Studies in Educational Disciplines (pp. 169–194). ISRES Publishing.

Sari, M., & Hunt. T. E. (2020). Parent-child mathematics affect as predictors of children's mathematics achievement. International Online Journal of Primary Education, 9, 85-96.

Hunt, T. E., & Sari, M. (2019). An English version of the Mathematics Teaching Anxiety Scale. International Journal of Assessment Tools in Education, 6, 436-443.

Hunt, T. E., Bagdasar, O., Sheffield, D., & Schofield, M. (2019). Assessing domain specificity in the measurement of mathematics calculation anxiety. Education Research International.

Petronzi, D., Staples, P., Sheffield, D., & Hunt, T. E. (2019). Acquisition, development and maintenance of maths anxiety in young children. In I. Mammarella., S. Caviola., & A. Dowker (Eds), Mathematics anxiety: What we know and what is still to be understood. London: Routledge. 

Petronzi, D., Staples, P., Sheffield, D., Hunt, T. E., & Fitton-Wilde, S. (2018). Further development of the children’s mathematics anxiety scale UK (CMAS-UK) for ages 4-7 years. Educational Studies in Mathematics.

Stupple, E., J. N., Pitchford, M., Ball, L. J., Hunt, T. E., & Steel, R. (2018). PLoS ONE. Slower is not always better: Response times challenge a cognitive miserliness account of the cognitive reflection test.

Petronzi, D., Staples, P., Sheffield, D., Hunt, T. E., & Fitton-Wilde, S. (2017). Numeracy apprehension in young children: Insights from children aged 4-7 years and primary care providers. Psychology and Education, 54, 1-26. 

Hunt, T. E., Bhardwa, J., & Sheffield, D. (2017). Mental arithmetic performance, physiological reactivity and mathematics anxiety amongst U.K primary school children. Learning and Individual Differences, 57, 129-132.

Hunt, T. E., & Sandhu, K. (2017). Endogenous and exogenous time pressure: Interactions with mathematics anxiety in explaining arithmetic performance. International Journal of Educational Research, 82, 91-98.

Stupple, E. J. N., Maratos, F. A., Elander, J., Hunt, T. E., Cheung, K. F. Y., & Aubeeluck, A. V. (2017). Development of the Critical Thinking Toolkit (CriTT): a measure of student attitudes and beliefs about critical thinking. Thinking Skills and Creativity, 23, 91-100.

Hunt, T. E., Clark-Carter, D., & Sheffield, D. (2014). Exploring the relationship between mathematics anxiety and performance: The role of intrusive thoughts. Journal of Education, Psychology and Social Sciences, 2, 69-75.

Hunt, T. E., Sheffield, D., & Clark-Carter, D. (2014). Exploring the relationship between mathematics anxiety and performance: An eye-tracking approach. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 29, 2, 226-231.

Richardson, M., Hunt, T. E., & Richardson, C. (2014). Children’s construction task performance and spatial ability: Controlling task complexity and predicting mathematics performance. Perceptual & Motor Skills, 119, 741-757.

Hunt, T. E., Clark-Carter-D., & Sheffield, D (2011). The development and part validation of a U.K. scale for mathematics anxiety. Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment, 29, 455-466.

Priest, H., Roberts, P., Dent, H., Hunt, T. E., Weston, D., Chell, A., Blincoe, C., & Armstrong, C. (2011). Preparing for collaborative working in mental health: An interprofessional education project with clinical psychology trainees and nursing students. The Journal of Mental Health Training, Education and Practice, 6, 47-57.

Stupple, E. J. N., Maratos, F. A., Elander, J., Duro, E., Purewal, S., & Hunt, T. E. (2011). The critical thinking toolkit for psychology (CriTTPsych): Development of an evidence-based resource. The Higher Education Academy Psychology Network.

Buckley, E.J. Rose, S.E. Ayers, B.A. Hunt, T.E. & White, D.G. (2007). Adjust the Balance: Literature Review into Work-Life Balance Research. Learning and Skills Council research report.

Sheffield, D., & Hunt, T.E. (2007). How does anxiety influence maths performance and what can we do about it? Mathematics Statistics and Operations Research Connections, 6 (4), 19-23.

A hand holding an pocket-watch style analogue stopwatch

Dr Tom Hunt, Associate Professor of Psychology, and Steve Chinn, Visiting Professor, both at the University of Derby, explore  'quick maths' and its role in the world of mathematics.

Maths symbols on a blackboard

Dr Tom Hunt, Senior Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Derby, is researching why children experience maths anxiety, and strategies for reducing it.