PROF Jan van Driel

PROF Jan van Driel




  • Career
    After obtaining a Master’s degree in chemistry (1984), I worked as a teacher of chemistry in a secondary school. In the same period, I started to work on a PhD thesis at Utrecht University, which focused on the teaching and learning of chemical equilibrium. After this was finished (in 1990), I moved to the educational development department of Delft University of Technology as a teacher trainer and educational consultant. From 1995-2016, I have worked at ICLON – Leiden University Graduate School of Teaching; in 2006 I became a full professor of science education. From 2010-2016, I was the director of ICLON. In 2016, I moved to the University of Melbourne as a professor of science education. Since 2017, I am also Associate Dean - Research at MGSE.

    As a researcher, I have developed a strong international profile in the domain of science education. In addition, I have also done substantial research in the domains of teaching & teacher education, and higher education. In all of these three domains, I have supervised PhD students, and published in the respective top journals. I am being regarded as one of the leading scholars in the world in research on science teachers’ pedagogical content knowledge (PCK). I have published several highly cited articles about this topic, and have been invited to give talks and workshops about this topic all over the world. Currently, I am co-Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Science Education. In addition, I have been and am a member of the editorial boards of a range of (inter-)national scholarly journals (e.g., Science Education, Journal of Research in Science Teaching, Journal of Teacher Education, Review of Educational Research). My view is that an educational researcher should be engaged in issues of practice and policy. Therefore, I have published since 1987 in professional journals for science&nbs   


Member of

  • Australasian Science Education Research Association. Member 2014 -
  • European Science Education Research Association. Member 1999 -
  • National Association of Research in Science Teaching. Member 1997 -
  • American Educational Research Association. Member 1996 -


Selected publications


Additional Grant Information

  • Awarded scholarships (since 2010)
    • Scholarship from the Ministry of Education of the Netherlands for two PhD projects on differentiated talent development (“Omgaan met verschillen”); April 2013 (together with Prof. dr. M. Westenberg; 300.000 €).
    • DUDOC Scholarship for a Postdoc Project “Data-geïnformeerd werken in het middelbaar onderwijs“ by dr. Michiel Dam (April 2013, together with prof. dr. W.F. Admiraal and dr. F.J.J.M. Janssen; 75.000 €).
    • Leiden University scholarships for three PhD projects on improving success in university education; June 2013 (around 600.000 € in total).
    • Leiden University and Delft University of Technology, scholarship for PhD project on research and design in science education; March 2014 (together with Prof. dr. Marc de Vries; around 200.000 €).
    • NWO Promotiebeurs voor leraren. PhD scholarship for drs. E. de Boer; January 2014 (together with dr. F. Janssen; 118.200 €).
    • Scholarship from the Ministery of Education of the Netherlands for a research project on selection for the teaching profession (together with dr. M. Snoek; 110.900 €).
    • DUDOC-alfa (Regieorgaan GW); Scholarship for a PhD Project for drs. E. de Vrind; June 2014 (together with dr. F. Janssen; around 309.000 €).
    • NRO Scholarship for a literature review on effects of selection in higher education (together with dr. M. Snoek; 49.637 €).
    • NWO Promotiebeurs voor leraren. PhD scholarship for drs. J. Vogelzang; July 2014 (together with prof. dr. W. Admiraal; 118.200 €).
    • NRO Scholarship for a review study on development of effective science teaching; July 2015 (together with dr. F. Janssen; 48.327 €).
    • NRO Scholarship for a research project “Sharing knowledge: joint professional development of inquiry based teaching at international scho



Education and training

  • Dr, Utrecht University 1990
  • MSc, Utrecht University 1984
  • BSc, Utrecht University 1980

Awards and honors

  • PhD Supervisor of the Year 2008, Netherlands Educational Research Association, 2009
  • Higher Education Award 1995, Ministry of Education of the Netherlands, 1996


Available for supervision

  • N

Supervision Statement

  • Since 2006, I have supervised 20 PhD students to successful completion (18 in The Netherlands and 2 in Sweden).
    At the moment, I am (co-)supervising 11 GR students at the MGSE plus 5 overseas and am not avaiable to supervise new students.