Tennessee STEM Education Center

The Tennessee Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Education Center (TSEC) is a research and outreach arm of MTSU, aimed at improving K-20 STEM education both locally and nationally.  TSEC partners with internal and external stakeholders to identify and address critical issues that impact access, equity, innovation, and leadership through collaborative activities, sponsored projects, and dissemination products at professional meetings and in practitioner and research journals. TSEC currently sponsors several high-profile annual events including the STEM Education Research Conference, the STEM Expo, and Posters at the Capitol, and invites the MTSU community to fulfill and refine the TSEC mission and vision through its involvement in existing programming or by initiating a conversation with us about how to better serve our constituencies.   


TSEC Hosts Visiting Scholars from Turkey

Dr. Z. Demet Kirbulut and Dr. Bilal Gunes headshots[October 2019] TSEC is excited to host two Visiting Scholars from Turkey, each here for a one year postdoctoral research fellowship. Dr. Z. Demet Kirbulut and Dr. Bilal Gunes will assist in the data collection, analysis and dissemination of research projects in STEM education. Meet our Visiting Scholars and read more HERE

TSEC Welcomes Assistant Director, Elizabeth Dyer

Elizabeth Dyer headshot[June 2019] Elizabeth Dyer is an Assistant Director of the Tennessee STEM Education Center (TSEC). She earned her PhD in Learning Sciences from Northwestern University. Prior to joining MTSU, she has worked at Horizon Research and WestEd as a STEM Education Research Associate, and completed a postdoc at Stanford University. Elizabeth's research interests include understanding how mathematics and science teacher learning and development lead to changes in teachers' classroom practices, as well as how to design systems that support professional learning in schools.

TSEC Hosts Sandra K Abell Institute

[June 2019] TSEC hosted, at MTSU, the biennial Sandra K. Abell Institute for Doctoral Students for eight mentors and 24 Ph.D. candidates from around the globe and featuring schools like Stanford, Georgia, Syracuse and England’s Oxford and Leicester universities. As part of NARST — the National Association of Research Science Teaching — the Abell institute brought together students and mentors from diverse fields. NARST is committed to the improvement of science teaching and learning through research. Read full article HERE.

Posters at the Capitol 2019

[March 2019] Seven MTSU undergraduates shared research with legislators at the annual Posters at the Capitol event facilitated by TSEC. Eight other Tennessee institutions participated in this this. Read more about the phenomenal work representing our university HERE, courtesy of MTSU News. 

Tennessee STEM Conference Highlights

[February 2019] The Tennessee STEM Education Center hosted their 13th Annual STEM Education Research Conference on February 14th-15th, featuring work from a variety of professors, students, and universities. The conference featured impressive keynote presentations from Ilana Horn of Vanderbilt University and Vicente Talanquer of University of Arizona. Read more about the event HERE, courtesy of MTSU News.

New Faculty at TSEC!

[January 2019] The Tennessee STEM Education Center welcomes Dr. Ying Jin and Dr. Dovie Kimmins as faculty fellows and Dr. Andrienne Friedli as an Associate Director! Our center is thrilled to bring their individual expertise to our growing studies and outreach.

Dr. Dovie Kimmins is a Professor in the Department of Mathematical Sciences, having been on the MTSU faculty since 1983. From 2004-2009 Dr. Kimmins served as Associate Director of the Tennessee Mathematics, Science and Technology Education Center at MTSU. Dr. Kimmins has worked extensively with preservice and inservice teachers. She has developed and taught undergraduate and graduate courses for both groups, and since 1997 has directed or co-directed 18 professional development projects impacting over 1000 teachers from at least two-thirds of the school districts across Tennessee. 

Dr. Ying Jin is an assistant professor in the Quantitative Psychology program in the department of Psychology. Dr Jin earned her Ph.D. in Research, Measurement, and Evaluation from University of Miami (FL). Her research areas include item response theory, differential item functioning (measurement invariance), structural equation modeling, and multilevel modeling. Dr. Jin works primarily with educational and psychological data. 

Dr. Andrienne Friedli is a Professor of Chemistry. Her training is in the area Chemistry, with a B. A. from Rice University in Chemistry; an M. S. from Yale University in the area of physical organic chemistry; and a Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Friedli started three core facilities in collaboration with faculty from eight departments: MTSU Interdisciplinary Microanalysis and Imaging Center (MIMIC), the NMR facility, and the X-Ray Computational and Experimental Laboratory and 3D Visualization Center (XCEL-3D). Her research interests involve organic materials chemistry such as optical biosensors and organically modified nanoporous silicates.

STEM Education Conference

The Tennessee STEM Education Center at MTSU will conduct the 13th annual Tennessee STEM Education Research Conference Feb. 14-15, 2019, at MTSU.
The conference will bring together “great minds to engage in conversations about empirical studies in STEM education and their applications to practice in K-20 learning environments,” said Dr. Greg Rushton, the center’s director. “Those who wish to contribute to the conference may register and submit an abstract.” See more about our conference on MTSU News here or visit our research conference page.

TSEC on the air!

Dr. Gregory Rushton was featured on the WGNS "Action Line" program December 17th, 2018 to talk about the important role TSEC plays at Middle Tennessee State University, where our institution is headed, and share highlights from our recent leadership conference. Want to listen in? Visit the WGNS page with audio here

TSEC Welcomes Lisa Strayer!

[November 2018] As our center continues to grow, Lisa Strayer is the latest addition to the TSEC team! Lisa has a strong background in working with elementary age children as well as assisting those with special needs. She has three children of her own, 2 in college and 1 in high school. We are grateful for her commitment to education and look forward to working with her. 

Leaders unified to bring bright students to STEM education, careers at MTSU summit

MTSU, along with Texas Instruments, held a STEM Leadership Summit to help in “Building the STEM Bridge … From K-12 to Higher Ed to Careers” on campus. Educators — from elementary to higher education — from across the Midstate attended the one-day gathering to promote future networking efforts.

Read full article, courtesy of MTSU News, here.

MTSU Tennessee STEM Education Center Director Greg Rushton, second from left, shares about his experience with engaging, enthusiastic students in the classroom during a recent panel discussion to promote STEM that was sponsored by Texas Instruments and held at MTSU. At left is Scott Eddins, mathematics strategy and support coordinator with the Tennessee Department of Education, chemistry assistant professor Maria Danielle Garrett of Belmont University and moderator Alfred Hall of the University of Memphis. (MTSU photo by J. Intintoli



Tennessee STEM Education Center

820 Fairview Ave,
Suite 102
MTSU PO Box 82
Murfreesboro, TN 37132