Prof. Dr. Thomas Martens

Thomas Martens


Thomas Martens is Professor for Pedagogical Psychology at MSH Medical School Hamburg. He is Assistant Lecturer at the Goethe University of Frankfurt and covers the areas of pedagogical psychology and educational sciences. Thomas Marten was senior researcher and coordinator for test development at the Centre for Technology Bases Assessment (TBA) of the German Institute for International Pedagogical Research (DIPF) and is associated research fellow of the DIPF. He graduated in the field of psychology (Dipl.-Psych. (M.Sc. equiv. Psych.)) and in higher education at the University of Kiel and at the University of Hamburg. He completed his doctoral studies under the auspices of Jürgen Rost at the University of Kiel, Department of Psychology. He organized the „International Conference on Motivation 2012“ and managed the International Scientific Board of the „International Conference on Motivation 2014. Thomas Martens was coordinator of the Special Interest Group “Motivation and Emotions” of the European Association for Learning and Instruction (EARLI) and is member of the Editorial Board of the Frontline Learning Research. He is project lead in the joint research project titled “Sensorische Erfassung von Motivationsindikatoren zur Steuerung von adaptiven Lerninhalten (SensoMot)” (equiv. “Sensoric collection of motivational indicators to guide adaptive learning content” (SensoMot)). His is expert in the area of motivation research, e-learning, test development and evaluation.

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Thomas Martens was Assistant Lecturer at the University of Kiel, the University of Bremen and at the University of Frankfurt. He also taught at the Fresenius University of Applied Sciences and at the University of Applied Sciences Darmstadt in the area of pedagogical psychology, methodology, social psychology and environmental psychology. He built on his didactical concepts of higher education through planned and well-structured further education modules and participated successfully in the additional study module for graduates titled “ Teaching Qualification in Science and Education” at the Centre for tertiary and further education (former IZHD) at the University of Hamburg. Based on the relevant learning objectives and learning styles, a number of teaching- and learning concepts are being used, from the group puzzle up to the project method. Furthermore, he emphasizes the detailed and targeted support of learning situations by students. Research findings on learning- and motivation regulation shape the design of his teaching modules.

At MSH Medical School Hamburg, he teaches the subject Pedagogical Psychology.

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The origin of his research is the analysis of learning processes under special consideration of motivational regulation. This is the theoretical foundation that he applies in different research concepts, e.g. for the learning diagnosis in tertiary education. In the near future, Thomas Martens will primarily conduct research that aims to result in automated diagnostic of learning processes and subsequent individual adaptations and feedback.

In particular, the research project SensoMot is meant to recognize motivational states and to guide learning content, with the support of sensor data. Through the use of so called wearables, we conduct physical data of participants that indicate stress or boredom levels. The algorithm of this software adapts the learning pace of participants.

Thomas Martens also focuses on evaluation research in the different contexts of application in pedagogical psychology, e.g. in the field of schools and tertiary institutions as well as in vocational and environmental education.

Research topics:

  • Foundations of a general theory of action and –learning: on cognitive, affective and motivational learning and action regulation
  • Sensoric collection of motivational indicators to guide adaptive learning content
  • E-learning & formative assessment: the use of technologies in the integration of diagnostic information in teaching- and learning processes
  • Application of mixed models in the measurement of competencies
  • Evaluation and quality management in schools, tertiary institutions and vocational schools

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> Go to the research area cognition-, motivation- and emotional psychology

  • German