New Perspectives in Science Education

Edition 14

Accepted Abstracts

The Davidson Institute of Science Education: Building Bridges between Science and People

Aurelie Lachish-Zalait, The Davidson Institute for Science Education (Israel)


The Davidson Institute of Science Education, the educational arm of the Weizmann Institute of Science, aims to enrich science education in Israel and around the world. Its wide variety of educational programs target students and teachers, as well as the broader community. Through all of its efforts, the Davidson Institute is dedicated to bridging the gap between the general public and the frontiers of science, as well as influencing the educational system and disseminating scientific knowledge.
The Davidson Institute coordinates the Weizmann Institute's educational programs aimed at the Israeli school system and the general public. In addition to targeting outstanding students and their teachers, the Davidson Institute’s formal instruction also reaches youth-at-risk and underachieving students, as well as Israel’s community of math and science teachers. Extracurricular activities include afternoon science clubs, science Olympiads and competitions, public science lectures, national and international science camps, annual events, and the Clore Garden of Science. Providing science education programs for all ages gives the Davidson Institute a holistic approach of lifelong learning and a special understanding of the needs of the various segments of Israeli society. Weizmann Institute researchers and graduate students are actively involved in Davidson Institute programs.
In all its activities, the Davidson Institute aspires to provide opportunities to a wide spectrum of target groups in an effort to reach as many people as possible. Activities are offered to constituencies ranging from young children to adults, Israeli and international youth, and students and teachers and from various socioeconomic sectors. Many activities are geared toward communities in the geographical and social periphery of Israel, including members of the Israeli-Arab and Orthodox Jewish communities. Programs range from day-long and other short-term workshops to multi-year intensive courses; from very advanced content levels to popular science— in a variety of languages. Nearly 400,000 individuals—students, teachers, and members of the general public—participated in a wide range of activities last year, while more than 3 million unique visitors browsed the Davidson Online website.

Keywords: Education, Science, Students, Teachers, General public, Online;


[1] AAAS - Project 2061 - Science for All Americans, 
[2] Orna Fallik; Sherman Rosenfeld; Bat Sheva Eylon (2013). School and out-of-school science: a model for bridging the gap.  Studies in Science Education. 49 (1) 69-91.    
[3] Scherz, Z., & Oren, M. (2006). How to change students’ images of science and technology. Science Education, 90(6), 965-985. 
[4] Sanders, W. L., & Rivers, J. C. (1996). Cumulative and residual effects of teachers on future student academic achievement.‏
[5] The Davidson Institute of Science,


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