Assessing the Bashaar Website as a Communication Tool among Scientists, Teachers, and Students

Assessing the Bashaar Website as a Communication Tool among Scientists, Teachers, and Students

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Assessing the Bashaar Website as a Communication Tool among Scientists, Teachers, and Students

Bashaar is an Israeli academic website that allows teachers and students to pose questions and receive responses from leading university professors in their field of expertise. Our assessment objectives were to explore and analyze the usage of the Bashaar website and to investigate teachers', and students', attitudes towards the usage of the website. The research population included 63 science teachers and students who posted questions and responded to a feedback questionnaire. Research tools included open- and close-ended parts of the questionnaire, and interviews of the director, an expert, and the initiator of the Bashaar website. Analysis of the interviews established that the main reasons behind constructing this website were to encourage students to elect a scientific or engineering career, narrow the gap between students, especially from the periphery, and professors, and provide teachers and students with a framework for inquiring about complex topics. Most of the teachers and students were highly satisfied from the professors', responses to their questions and indicated the website role in providing expert thoughts on complex questions. The assessment of the participants’, responses showed that overall the website strengthened the communication among scientists, teachers, and students, and contributed to deepening the scientific knowledge of both teachers and students.Key Words: academic-community relationship, web-based learning, scientific literacy

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