Prof. dr. Theo Wubbels

Emeritus Professor

Theo Wubbels received his masters degree in Physics in 1974 from Utrecht University and his PhD in Education in 1984. He was a physics teacher and school principal in a Montessori High school from 1973-1978 and then moved to Utrecht University, first as a curriculum developer for physics in secondary education (1978-1980) and then as an assistant professor in teacher education (1979-1986). In 1986 he was appointed as associate professor and director of teacher education in the  IVLOS Institute of Education, an institute providing post graduate teacher education and functioning as center for teaching and learning in higher education. As a full professor in Education from 1991 onwards he became Dean of the Institute of Education (1994-2002) and then moved to the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences, first as Head of the Departmenet of Education and then as Associate Dean for Academic affairs (2004 - 2013) and Dean of the Graduate School (2007-2013). From 2012 until 2015 he was Admissions Dean of Utrecht University

His main research interests developed in his career from the pedagogy of physics education, via problems and supervision of beginning teachers and teaching and learning in higher education to studies of learning environments and especially interpersonal relationships in education. His most recent work focuses on multicultural classes, assessment of teacher interpersonal behavior, teacher learning and teacher cognitions about interpersonal relationships.

Visiting professorship include among others Haifa University, Curtin University, Monash University, University of Tasmania, George Mason University, University of Bath, University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Exeter University (UK), and Trondheim (Norway).

He published over 250 articles in international peer reviewed journals and books. He was the co-editor of Do You Know What You Look Like? (1993, Falmer Press). He also co-edited Linking Practice and Theory. The Pedagogy of Realistic Teacher Education (2001, Lawrence Eralbaum associates), which was translated in German (2002) and Japanese (2010). In 2012 he co-edited Interpersonal Relationships in Education: An Overview of Contemporary Research (Sense publishers).  

He was awarded a.o. the best thesis supervisor award of the Netherlands Educational Research Association (2013), the best paper award of the Special Interest Group the Study of Learning Environments of AERA in 2009, 2004, and 1988, the Carol S. Weinstein award 2010 of the Special Interest Group Classroom Management of AERA and the  Excellence in Research on Teaching and Teacher Education Award (Division K) of the de American Educational Research Association in 1988. He is Fellow of the American Educational Reserach Association and was honored with a Royal Knighthood from Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands.


2018 - present Professor Emeritus of Education

2012 - 2015 Acting Chair Department of Education

2012 - 2015 Admissions Dean Utrecht University

2007 - 2013  Dean Graduate School of Social and Behavioural Sciences, responsible for PhD and Research MSc education  

2005 - 2013  Associate Dean for academic affairs, Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences

2001 - 2018  Professor of Education

2001 - 2007     Director Department of Educational Sciences          

1998 - 2003     Chair Academic Core department Utrecht University College                     

1993 - 2001     Professor of Education and Dean of IVLOS, Institute of Education; this institute conducts educational research, provides teacher education and supports university staff and faculties in teaching improvement and curriculum development

1990 - 1993     Utrecht University, Professor of Education, Director of Teacher Education, Director of Research on Teaching and Teacher Education

1985 - 1990     Utrecht University, Associate professor, Centre for Science and Mathematics Education and Institute for Teacher Education, Coordinator of Research on Teaching and Teacher Education, Director of Teacher Education in Science and Mathematics

1979 - 1985    Utrecht University, Assistant professor, Physics Education

1978 - 1979     National Project for Curriculum Development in Physics, Utrecht, Program Specialist

1976 - 1978    Montessori High School, Zeist, Assistant Principal

1973 - 1978     Montessori High School, Zeist, Physics teacher, coordinator of School counselling services.

1970-1974      Utrecht University, Teaching and Research Assistant