Dr. Yehudit J. Dori
Dr. Yehudit Judy Dori is a Visiting Scholar at the Center for Educational Computing Initiatives, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA. She is the Assessment Leader of the Technology Enabled Active Learning project at MIT.
She received her B.Sc. in chemistry from Hebrew University, Jerusalem, in 1975, M.Sc. in Life Sciences in 1981 and Ph.D. in Science Education in 1988, both from Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel. Dr. Dori has been a faculty at the Department of Education in Technology and Science, Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel since 1991. Her research interests are related to teaching and learning chemistry and environmental studies, and focus on models and computerized molecular modeling, education through technology, and assessment.
Dr. Dori is a member of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST), where she is on the International Committee and on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Research in Science Teaching. At the European Association for Learning and Instruction (EARLI) she is Co-Chairperson of the Special Interest Group on Evaluation and Assessment. She is the author of 30 articles in international science education and technology journals and of courseware modules in chemistry and biology. She has been Principal Investigator of several Israeli national science education projects.
Ph.D., Science Teaching, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel, 1988.
M.Sc., Life Sciences, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel, 1981.
Teaching Diploma Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel, 1978.
B.Sc., Chemistry and Biochemistry, Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Israel, 1975.
1999-date: Visiting Scholar. Center for Educational Computing Initiatives, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Massachusetts, USA.
1991-date: Tenured Faculty. Department of Education in Technology and Science, Technion, Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel.
1988-90: Research Associate. Biological Sciences, University of Kansas, Kansas, USA - Postdoctoral Research.
International Journals - Editorial Board
2001-date: Member of the Editorial Board, Journal of Science Teacher Education (JSTE).
1999-date: Member of the Editorial Board, Journal of Research in Science Teaching (JRST).
1996-date: Member of the Editorial Board, The Chemical Educator, Springer-Verlag.
International and National Journals - Referee
1997-99: Studies in Education, New Series, The Israeli Journal of Research in Education, Haifa University.
1997: Educational Policy Planning (EPP) - Special Issue.
1991-98: Journal of College Science Teaching of the Society for College Science Teachers (SCST).
Organizing Conferences and Workshops
2000: Member of the Organizing Committee, 1st Biannual Conference of the EARLI Assessment SIG - "Assessment 2000", University of Maastricht, Maastricht, The Netherlands.
2000: Member of the Organizing Committee, AYALA 2000, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel.
1999: Chairperson of the Organizing Committee, International Workshop on Science Teachers Education toward the New Millennium, Technion, Haifa, IIT, Israel.
1997: Member of the Organizing Committee, 62nd Conference of the Israel Chemistry Society (ICS), Technion, IIT, Haifa, Israel.
1992: Member of the Organizing Committee, 57th Conference of the Israel Chemistry Society (ICS), Technion, IIT, Haifa, Israel.
1998-date: International Committee in the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST) - Committee Member.
1997-date: Assessment and Evaluation SIG, European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction (EARLI) - Co-ordinator.
1993-97: National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST) Outstanding Paper Award - Committee member.
Computerized Molecular Modeling (CMM) has been utilized by chemists as an advanced research and industry tool. However, utilizing CMM for teaching/learning is a novel idea, which I among a few other researchers worldwide, have incorporated into high school chemistry teaching. I have developed and implemented CAI modules on organic chemistry and polymers, which incorporated CMM, a knowledge base and a question bank. I have investigated the impact of introducing computer technology on teachers' attitudes and classroom implementation.
Main findings of these studies indicate that teaching with CMM encouraged understanding of compounds and provided students with tools for explaining their answers. Experimental group students understood the model concept better and were more capable of applying transformation from one-dimensional to two- or three-dimensional molecular representations.
Following the success of my research and development in integrating CMM in experimental high schools, I am currently leading a 3-year project funded by the Israeli Ministry of Education. The aim of the project is to introduce CMM and computerized laboratories into chemistry courses for high school students majoring in chemistry, and to assimilate it as an integral part of the matriculation examinations.
During the first half of the 19th century scientists were struggling to understand the nature of electromagnetic phenomena and the concept of "action at a distance". Faraday was the first to conceive of the idea of "electromagnetic fields" - lines of force that spread throughout space, transmitting forces between material objects. In the middle of that century Maxwell formulated Faraday's field model mathematically. But the mathematics is complicated and abstract, and it was not until experiments by Hertz toward the end of the century that there was wide acceptance of the Maxwell/Faraday field model. In view of the difficulty that scientists experienced in conceptualizing electromagnetic phenomena, it is no surprise that undergraduate students encounter serious difficulties when confronted with Maxwell's theory. We hope to make this theory more comprehensible to introductory students through the use of educational technology.
Educational technology supports meaningful learning and knowledge integration. Spatial images preserve relationships among a complex set of ideas and play a central role in scientific creativity. The historical background and the options educational technology offers have stimulated us to envision computer-based visualization as a prime aid for teaching the complicated dynamics exhibited by electromagnetic fields.
The Technology Enabled Active Learning (TEAL) environment is designed for large enrollment freshman physics courses at MIT. It is aimed at serving as a model for undergraduate science courses for large groups. The TEAL environment is a merger of lecture, recitations, and hands-on laboratory experience into a technologically and collaboratively rich experience for incoming freshmen. The first implementation of TEAL has been in freshman electricity and magnetism (E&M). Engaging 3D animations and 2D Java simulations of the phenomena under study complement the laboratory experiments that students carry out as a part of the course. Formal and informal instructions, aided by the media-rich interactive software for simulation and visualization, help students in the conceptualization of this material. The assessment process that accompanies each stage of a curriculum development project and its implementation is of utmost importance.
The objectives of the TEAL project are to improve conceptual understanding of the nature and dynamics of electromagnetic fields and phenomena, and of visualization capabilities and higher order thinking skills.
Our research goals are
Research instruments included conceptual and spatial ability tests, as well as surveys. In the cognitive domain pre- and post-course tests has enabled us to compare the extent of conceptual change among students at various academic levels. The surveys related to the affective domain and pertained to student attitudes toward studying with various teaching methods in the TEAL project. Student population consisted of about 150 MIT undergraduate students.
We have found that at the end of the E&M course students improved their conceptual understanding and used schematics to reason about pertinent physical phenomena. The common belief is that the ability to solve quantitative/algorithmic problems is related to conceptual understanding. However, our preliminary results indicate that students' demonstrated ability in the algorithmic problems is not necessarily reflected in their conceptual understanding of the same subject matter. We also found higher student satisfaction with the physics course, which is attributed to a more active and collaborative involvement in the learning process and more direct hands-on exposure and visualization of the phenomena under study.