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Mehmet Aydeniz, PhD

Professor, STEM Education/Science


Mehmet Aydeniz is a professor of STEM education at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Professor Aydeniz has a range of research interests related to the ways in which scientific knowledge is constructed, evaluated and validated, and a focused research agenda about student and teacher learning.  

His research efforts have focused on improving instructional quality both in K-12 and college science classrooms for ambitious and equitable teaching. This includes teacher self-efficacy to implement argumentation-pedagogy, teacher noticing, teacher’s pedagogical content knowledge for inquiry and modeling.


Professional Background 


Research on Teacher Learning and Efficacy

His current research efforts with teachers center around supporting teachers to design, select, and implement cognitively demanding learning tasks that can empower students to assume and enact epistemic agency in the context of argumentation, modeling, engineering design and computational thinking.

Research on Student Learning and Assessment

Professor Aydeniz’s efforts around student learning focus on development and validation of a student engagement scale that attends to the behavioral, epistemic, cognitive, motivational, metacognitive, social and emotional aspects of student learning in the context of cognitively demanding group-based learning tasks. This strand of his research is promising in terms of its ability to predict the correlation between the type and level of student engagement and their academic achievement.

Research on Innovations in Graduate Education

Professor Aydeniz’s third line of research focuses on innovations in graduate education. He is specifically interested in helping STEM graduate programs to develop globally competent scholars and professionals for addressing the workforce needs of academia, industry and government agencies.

Current Projects

Professor Aydeniz currently leads two research labs.

Epistemic Curiosity Lab (ECL): The ECL’s major goal is to develop new pedagogical knowledge, teaching resources and assessment tools related to epistemic curiosity. The group’s efforts focus on ways to define, measure and promote students’ acquisition of epistemic curiosity in STEM courses.

Scientific Collaboration Lab (SCL): The major goal of SCL is to study scientific practices, particularly scientific collaborations in authentic scientific laboratories. As a group, we are interested in understanding how scientific collaborations start, how they are nurtured, sustained and how they become dysfunctional both at the group level and the institutional level. Our efforts focus on developing and validating collaboration structures that promotes creativity, problem solving and productivity among science teams.

Contact Information

  • A408 Jane & David Bailey Education Complex, 1126 Volunteer Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37996
  • Phone: 865-974-0885
  • E-mail: