Long-term Research and Development in Science Education

What Have We Learned?


Over the past 50 years the Department of Science Teaching at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel was actively involved in all the components related to curriculum development, implementation, and research in science, mathematics, and computer science education: both learning and teaching. These initiatives are well designed and effective examples of long-term developmental and comprehensive models of reforms in the way science and mathematics are learned and taught. The 16 chapters of the book are divided into two key parts. The first part is on curriculum development in the sciences and mathematics. The second describes the implementation of these areas and its related professional development. Following these chapters, two commentaries are written by two imminent researchers in science and mathematics teaching and learning: Professor Alan Schonfeld from UC Berkeley, USA, and Professor Ilka Parchman from IPN at the University of Kiel, Germany. The book as a whole, as well as its individual chapters, are intended for a wide audience of curriculum developers, teacher educators, researchers on learning and teaching of science and mathematics and policy makers at the university level interested in advancing models of academic departments working under a common philosophy, yet under full academic freedom.

Contributors are: Abraham Arcavi, Michal Armoni, Ron Blonder, Miriam Carmeli, Jason Cooper, Rachel Rosanne Eidelman, Ruhama Even, Bat-Sheva Eylon, Alex Friedlander, Nurit Hadas, Rina Hershkowitz, Avi Hofstein, Ronnie Karsenty, Boris Koichu, Dorothy Langley, Ohad Levkovich, Smadar Levy, Rachel Mamlok-Naaman, Nir Orion, Zahava Scherz, Alan Schoenfeld, Yael Shwartz, Michal Tabach, Anat Yarden and Edit Yerushalmi.

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Abraham Arcavi, Professor, is the incumbent of the Lester B. Pearson Professorial Chair at the Department of Science Teaching, The Weizmann Institute of Science. He studies learning and teaching of mathematics at the secondary school level.

Anat Yarden, Professor, is head of the Department of Science Teaching, Weizmann Institute of Science, and head of the Biology Education Group in this department. She studies the adaptation of authentic scientific practices for the teaching and learning of biology.

Avi Hofstein is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Science teaching specializing in R & D of chemistry education. His main research area is inquiry-type laboratories. Was awarded the DCRA and ACS award in Research in chemistry teaching and learning.

Bat-Sheva Eylon, is Professor (Emerita) in the Science Teaching Department at the Weizmann Institute of Science. She studies learning and teaching of secondary-school physics and teachers’ professional development. Recipient of the Israeli EMET prize and fellow of the AAAS and ISLS.
“The Department of Science Teaching is one of the longest and, one could argue, boldest enterprise at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. Deeply embedded within a globally leading hub of exact and life sciences research and, at the same time, tightly connected with educators and teachers, the Department is a rare case of scientific rigor tested continuously on the classroom floor. This unique combination has led to the insights generously revealed in this book, summarizing what has been learnt in over 50 years of ever-evolving research efforts and innovations at the leading science education research center of the Start-up Nation.” – Ron Milo, Dean of Education, Weizmann Institute of Science
Science, Math and Computer education researchers, teachers, professional developers of teachers and curriculum developers in these areas.
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