Dr Thorsten Scheiner

Research Fellow
STEM in Education: Design and Growth Across the Disciplines

Areas of expertise: mathematics education; teacher education; learning sciences; educational theory

Phone: +617 3623 7314

Email: thorsten.scheiner@acu.edu.au

Campus: ACU Brisbane Campus

ORCID ID: 0000-0002-1118-5958

Thorsten Scheiner is a Research Fellow in the STEM in Education: Design and Growth across the Disciplines research program at the Institute for Learning Sciences and Teacher Education. Prior to this appointment, he was a Lecturer in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Auckland.

Scheiner’s research program has advanced conceptual understanding and theory in two interrelated lines of research enquiry in mathematics education: (a) the nature and development of mathematics teachers’ knowledge and noticing, and (b) the nature and development of key processes in students’ mathematical thinking and learning.

In the first line of research enquiry, Scheiner has promoted new understanding of the nature and development of mathematics teacher knowledge and teacher noticing, a field of study that has high relevance to pedagogical practice. It includes original work in advancing conceptualisations of mathematics teacher knowledge and practices, which contributes to the international discourse on how the field conceptualises the professional work of mathematics teachers (Scheiner, Montes, Godino et al., 2019). There is an additional focus on the development of a more comprehensive model of mathematics teacher noticing that allows the field to move beyond intuitive models that understand teacher noticing as a disembodied, purely mental form of seeing toward positioning noticing as being embodied, cultural and positional in important ways (Scheiner, 2016, 2021). Within the field of teacher noticing, Scheiner has also contributed to the advancement of knowledge in how pre-service and in-service teachers learn to notice student mathematical thinking, especially through the use of video-capture studies in teacher education and professional development programs (Santagata, König, Scheiner et al., 2021). 

In the second line of research enquiry, Scheiner has generated new knowledge about complex dynamic processes that are crucial for meaningful mathematical learning of students. In particular, new interpretive possibilities and theoretical hypotheses have been generated and explored that extend research on mathematical cognition by identifying central functions (epistemological, conceptual and cognitive) of mathematical learning processes (Scheiner, 2016; Scheiner & Pinto, 2019). Scheiner has also advanced theoretical innovation in research on mathematical thinking and learning that enables the development of meta-theories on highly contested areas of study, such as conceptual change in mathematical learning (Scheiner, 2020). This is significant precisely because deeper processes in mathematical learning can be identified when tensions, conflicts and paradoxes between fundamental but opposing theoretical perspectives are acknowledged and exploited.

Scheiner has been a visiting researcher and visiting scholar at Stanford University, the University of California at Berkeley, and the Center for Research in Mathematics and Science Education in San Diego. He has taught undergraduate courses in mathematics, as well as undergraduate and graduate courses in mathematics education at different universities, including the University of Auckland, Macquarie University, the University of Hamburg, Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, and the Humboldt University of Berlin.

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Curriculum Vitae


Select publications

  • Scheiner, T. (2021). Towards a more comprehensive model of teacher noticing. ZDM–Mathematics Education, 53(1), 85–94. DOI: 10.1007/s11858-020-01202-5
  • Scheiner, T. (2020). Dealing with opposing theoretical perspectives: Knowledge in structures or knowledge in pieces? Educational Studies in Mathematics, 104(1), 127–145. DOI: 10.1007/s10649-020-09950-7
  • Scheiner, T. (2019). If we want to get ahead, we should transcend dualisms and foster paradigm pluralism. In G. Kaiser & N. Presmeg (Eds.), Compendium for early career researchers in mathematics education (pp. 511-532). Cham, Switzerland: Springer. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-15636-7_27
  • Scheiner, T., Montes, M. A., Godino, J. D., Carrillo, J., & Pino-Fan, L. (2019). What makes mathematics teacher knowledge specialised? Offering alternative views. International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 17(1), 153-172. DOI: 10.1007/s10763-017-9859-6
  • Scheiner, T., & Pinto, M. F. (2019). Emerging perspectives in mathematical cognition: Contextualising, complementizing, and complexifying. Educational Studies in Mathematics, 101(3), 357-372. DOI: 10.1007/s10649-019-9879-y
  • Scheiner, (2016). New light on old horizon: Constructing mathematical concepts, underlying abstraction processes, and sense making strategies. Educational Studies in Mathematics, 91(2), 165-183. DOI: 10.1007/s10649-015-9665-4
  • Scheiner, (2016). Teacher noticing: Enlightening or blinding? ZDM–Mathematics Education, 48(1), 227-238. DOI: 10.1007/s11858-016-0771-2

Accolades and awards

  • Early Career Researcher Excellence in Research Recognition Award, Institute for Learning Sciences and Teacher Education, 2020
  • Karl H. Ditze Dissertation Award, University of Hamburg, 2018
  • Research Excellence Scholarship, Macquarie University, 2016–2017
  • Klaus Murmann Fellowship, Foundation of German Business, 2014–2016

Appointments and affiliations

  • Research Fellow at the Institute for Learning Sciences & Teacher Education, Australian Catholic University, 2019 –
  • Lecturer at The University of Auckland, Department of Mathematics, 2017–2018

Public engagement

Selected invited presentations for mathematics education research audiences include:

  • Scheiner, T. (2021, Jul). Critical remarks on the notion of unpacking mathematics in discourses of teacher knowledge. Invited extended presentation at the 14th International Congress on Mathematical Education (TSG 33: Knowledge in/for teaching mathematics at secondary level). Shanghai, China. (virtual conference)
  • Scheiner, T. (2019, Jul). Accounting for changes in teachers’ noticing of students’ mathematical understanding. Invited presentation at the University of Huelva. Huelva, Spain.
  • Scheiner, T. (2018, Feb). On contextualising, complementizing, and complexifying. Invited presentation at the Department of Mathematics of the University of California at San Diego. San Diego, CA, USA.
  • Scheiner, T. (2017, Dec). A critical stance toward conceptualisations of teacher knowledge. Invited presentation at the Faculty of Education of the University of Campinas. Campinas, Brazil.
  • Scheiner, T. (2016, Oct). Abstraction in mathematics knowing and learning: Toward contextuality, complementarity, and complexity. Invited presentation in the Mathematics Education Research Colloquium at the University of Bremen. Bremen, Germany.
  • Scheiner, T. (2015, May). Revisiting the original conceptualisation of teachers' knowledge: A need to shift the emphasis. Invited presentation at the Department of Curriculum Studies of the University of Stellenbosch (Research Unit for Mathematics Education). Stellenbosch, South Africa.

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