More than half of all 16 to 18-year-olds in education have trouble with maths, a survey suggests.
Even some maths students had trouble with numbers
The Times Higher Education Supplement spoke to 10,000 teenagers in England and Wales, of whom 57.5% said they did not have numerical skills.
Even 19% of those studying maths reported the problem.
However, seven out of 10 of those interviewed said they expected to attend university, while 2% wanted to train for work with companies.
Half the teenagers who studied science said they lacked number skills, and 70% of those taking English.
Meanwhile, only 37% of science students and 31% of maths students said they had good writing skills.
Just over two-thirds of boys were confident of their computing skills, compared with 46.4% of girls.
The government says in England it will introduce a "general" diploma at GCSE level, which would mark the achievement of those attaining five or more A* to C grades including maths and English.
At present, any subjects count towards official figures.
Under the diploma plan, maths and English passes will have to include tests of youngsters' "functional" abilities.