Ayelet Baram Tsabari

Ayelet Baram Tsabari
Technion - Israel Institute of Technology | technion · Faculty of Education in Science and Technology

PhD

About

106
Publications
36,017
Reads
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2,342
Citations
Citations since 2017
49 Research Items
1663 Citations
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Introduction
I am an Assistant Professor at the Technion, and head of the Biology Education and Science Communication research groups at the Department of Education in Science and Technology. I am a Landau Fellow for Leaders in Science and Technology Program, an Allon Fellow for Outstanding Young Researchers, and a member of the Learning in a Networked Society (LINKS) Israeli center of Research Excellence (I-CORE).
Additional affiliations
March 2008 - present
Technion - Israel Institute of Technology
Position
  • Research Assistant

Publications

Publications (106)
Article
Full-text available
The Covid-19 pandemic escalated demand for scientific explanations and guidance, creating opportunities for scientists to become publicly visible. In this study, we compared characteristics of visible scientists during the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic (January to December 2020) across 16 countries. We find that the scientists who became visi...
Article
Full-text available
In a typical citizen science scenario different groups of people take on various roles in a research process that is often coupled with educational, social or personal objectives. A widely accepted viewpoint asserts that such an endeavor should bring benefits to all involved parties and that no participating individuals should act in service of oth...
Article
Full-text available
Social networks are becoming powerful agents mediating between science and the public. Considering the public tendency to associate science with men makes investigating representations of female scientists in social media important. Here we set out to find whether the commenting patterns to text-based science communication are similar. To examine t...
Chapter
Full-text available
Argumentation skills are important for informed decision-making, especially in everyday life when engaging with science. The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic is an ideal opportunity to study laypeople’s use of argumentation skills when engaging with a scientific issue daily, while making relevant decisions that affect their families and society. This...
Chapter
For the past few decades science education aimed to prepare non-scientists to make sense of science in their daily lives, to be critical consumers of science information, and to make informed decisions about scientific issues (Roberts & Bybee, 2014). This goal of inclusive science education for non-scientists is termed “science literacy” (Hurd, 195...
Article
Full-text available
Wi-Fi radiation is a type of radio frequency electromagnetic radiation (RF-EMR) that refers to the transfer of energy by radio waves. Nowadays, exposure to RF radiation is widespread including wireless internet connection (Wi-Fi) routers and cell phones. The proliferation of devices emitting RF radiation has entailed some public and media-generated...
Article
Full-text available
In the first months of 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic became a top concern worldwide, media coverage became full of information that demands mathematical literacy, or numeracy, to interpret. In this study, we examine the public's understanding of mathematical notions that are required for understanding the pandemic and predicting its spread. We als...
Article
Full-text available
The Internet has potential to alleviate inequality in general and specifically with respect to science literacy. Nevertheless, digital divides persist in online access and use, as well as in subsequent social outcomes. Among these, the “language divide” partly determines how successful users are in their Internet use depending on their proficiency...
Preprint
Full-text available
Introduction Israel led a rapid vaccine rollout against COVID-19, leading to a local remission of the epidemic and rolling back of most public health measures. Further vaccination of 12-15-year-olds may be hindered by public perceptions of the necessity and safety of vaccination. Methods we examined the considerations of vaccine hesitant parents (...
Poster
Full-text available
While calls for more inclusive science communication have primarily focused on race, gender and disability, this conversation draws our attention to science communication among religious minorities. Drawing on the case study of Haredi Jews in Israel, the goal of this webinar is to explore the range of challenges science communication poses for reli...
Article
Recent conceptualizations of science literacy, a key aim of contemporary science education, suggest defining it as a function of actual uses of science in daily life. We characterize expressions of science literacy in online authentic public discourse, using content analysis of a year’s worth of widely-read Israeli online news site coverage of anim...
Article
Full-text available
Recent conceptualizations of science literacy, a key aim of contemporary science education, suggest defining it as a function of actual uses of science in daily life. We characterize expressions of science literacy in online authentic public discourse, using content analysis of a year’s worth of widely-read Israeli online news site coverage of anim...
Article
Full-text available
This paper identifies the diverse ways in which participants engage with science, through the same citizen science project. Using multiple data sources, we describe various activities conducted by citizen scientists in an air quality project, and characterize the motivations driving their engagement. Findings reveal several themes, indicative of pa...
Article
Full-text available
While scholars have highlighted how science communication reifies forms of structural inequality, especially race and gender, we examine the challenges science communication pose for religious minorities. Drawing on the disproportionate magnitude of COVID-19-related morbidity on Israel’s Ultra-Orthodox Jews, we examined their processes of COVID-19...
Article
Full-text available
Public Understanding of Science is an interdisciplinary journal serving the scholarly community and practitioners. This article reports an analysis of the readability and jargon in articles published in Public Understanding of Science throughout its almost three decades of existence to examine trends in accessibility to diverse audiences. The acces...
Article
Citizen science is transforming the ways scientific knowledge is created, in that citizens participate in active scientific research, and large scientific databases can be accessed online. However, data availability does not guarantee public use or the relevance of these resources. This paper addresses the ways in which non-expert adults involved i...
Article
Full-text available
Certain science‐related topics elicit persistent public controversy, such as routine childhood vaccinations and anthropogenic climate change. Many people are misinformed about the scientific facts underlying these issues. In response, science educators have called for improvements in the public's science literacy, but it is not clear which componen...
Article
A ‘citizen science’ approach was evaluated as an approach to organize an extensive radon survey to be representative of the population of either single regions or a whole country. The “RadonTest” online system allowed schoolchildren to undertake and record short-term radon tests in their homes. Measurements were carried out in Israel using charcoal...
Article
Full-text available
Experts are concerned about the spread and recalcitrance of vaccine misinformation and its contribution to vaccine hesitancy. Despite this risk, little research attention has been paid to understanding how individuals seek vaccine information online and evaluate its trustworthiness. Here, we hypothesized that when vaccine-hesitant parents seek info...
Article
Full-text available
Social media allow experts to form communities and engage in direct dialogue with publics, which can promote mutual understanding between sciences and publics. However, little is known about experts’ participation in online communities, or effective ways to prepare them for public engagement. Here, we explored these issues with experts who voluntar...
Article
Full-text available
In many countries the public's main source of information about science and technology is the mass media. Unfortunately, in recent years traditional journalism has experienced a collapse, and science journalism has been a major casualty. One potential remedy is to encourage scientists to write for news media about science. On these general news pla...
Article
The rise of citizen science in the past decade has brought many opportunities for scientists and publics alongside many challenges and questions regarding best practices. These include questions regarding public engagement, project design and measures of success. The aim of this study is to better understand what makes citizen science projects scie...
Article
Full-text available
Reflecting on the practice of storytelling, this practice insight explores how collaborations between scholars and practitioners can improve storytelling for science communication outcomes with publics. The case studies presented demonstrate the benefits of collaborative storytelling for inspiring publics, promoting understanding of science, and en...
Preprint
Full-text available
In many countries the public's main source of information about science and technology is the mass media. Unfortunately, in recent years traditional journalism has experienced a collapse, and science journalism has been a major casualty. One potential remedy is to encourage scientists to write for news media about science. On these general news pla...
Article
Full-text available
Although science presents ethical challenges to society, little is known about the ways in which adults express ethical concerns in everyday science-related situations. This study analyzed the ethical expressions in 1079 reader comments to online news coverage of animal experimentation and climate change in Israel. Some forms of ethical concerns we...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Learning in a networked society is presented in this symposium with the basic assumption that “schooling” and “society” cannot be considered as separate entities and should bring together the theoretical and practical tools of scientists in both the social and educational sciences. Despite the powerful potential for cross-fostering of ideas between...
Book
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One of the most significant developments in contemporary education is the view that knowing and understanding are anchored in cultural practices within communities. This shift coincides with technological advancements that have reoriented end-user computer interaction from individual work to communication, participation and collaboration. However,...
Chapter
Seeking to promote science communication, civic engagement, and informal education, citizen science is a genre of research that connects scientists and non-scientists around projects involving science. This meeting point creates opportunities for potential benefits to both sides. Scientists may advance their research and obtain prestigious funding...
Chapter
Modern life requires individuals with little formal educational background in the sciences to daily make science and technology-based decisions, ranging from vaccinating one’s children and consuming genetically modified food to buying a house near a nuclear power plant. The main information source for many such decisions are contemporary media that...
Article
Technological developments, social networking and the emergence of sensory micro-computation platforms have facilitated the recent growth of citizen science-public participation in scientific research. Citizen science provides lay audiences platforms for data collection and classification alongside access to large scientific databases. Although the...
Chapter
To respond to the decline of young people’s interest in the sciences, calls have been made to reorganize the ways in which science is taught, in order to address low student motivation. Drama offers a toolbox of techniques that can be used when teaching science and which can address the issue of low student motivation. This chapter provides science...
Article
Context-based approaches can bridge the gap between abstract, difficult science concepts and the world students live in. However, the relevance of specific contexts to different groups of learners, and its stability over time, have not been extensively explored. This study used four datasets, collected in different formal and informal settings, to...
Article
Full-text available
This study examined to what extent Nobel Prize announcements and awards trigger global and local searches or “teachable moments” related to the laureates and their discoveries. We examined the longitudinal trends in Google searches for the names and discoveries of Nobel laureates from 2012 to 2017. The findings show that Nobel Prize events clearly...
Article
Full-text available
Hearing-impaired children’s chances of integrating into hearing society largely depend on their parents, who need to learn vast amounts of science knowledge in the field of hearing. This study characterized the role played by science knowledge in the lives of nonscientists faced with science-related decisions by examining the interactions between g...
Article
Full-text available
This study examines the ways in which the public discusses and debates the scientific issue of vaccinations in the online social media environment of Facebook. We apply a mixed-methods approach, where a qualitative analysis is combined with a quantitative analysis of the characteristics of the debate on polio vaccinations in a Facebook group dedica...
Article
Full-text available
Theatre is often introduced into science museums to enhance visitor experience. While learning in museums exhibitions received considerable research attention, learning from museum theatre has not. The goal of this exploratory study was to investigate the potential educational role of a science museum theatre play. The study aimed to investigate (1...
Article
Full-text available
Increased interest in public engagement with science worldwide has resulted in the growth of funding opportunities for scientists in the rapidly expanding field of citizen science. This paper describes a case study based on interviews and observations, including a six-month field diary, of ten scientists who engaged in a citizen science project to...
Article
Full-text available
This empirical study investigates factors that influence the implementation of science inquiry in the education systems of Turkey, Israel, Sweden and the Czech Republic. Data was collected by means of recordings of science experts’ discussions as part of an EU-funded project called Science-Teacher Education Advanced Methods (2009–2012). Results of...
Article
Full-text available
Scientists are required to communicate science and research not only to other experts in the field, but also to scientists and experts from other fields, as well as to the public and policymakers. One fundamental suggestion when communicating with non-experts is to avoid professional jargon. However, because they are trained to speak with highly sp...
Article
Rapid growth in public communication of science and technology has led to many diverse training programs. We ask: What are learning goals of science communication training? A comprehensive set of learning goals for future trainings will draw fully from the range of fields that contribute to science communication. Learning goals help decide what to...
Chapter
Science communication is a professional skill increasingly expected of scientists by their own organizations. Several studies have described motivations and challenges for scientists who wish to engage with the public, as well as the abundance of such interactions. However, few studies have systematically examined scientists’ ability to communicate...
Article
Full-text available
Recent developments in sensory and communication technologies have made the development of portable air-quality (AQ) micro-sensing units (MSUs) feasible. These MSUs allow AQ measurements in many new applications, such as ambulatory exposure analyses and citizen science. Typically, the performance of these devices is assessed using the mean error or...
Article
Full-text available
Background Social media can act as an important platform for debating, discussing, and disseminating information about vaccines. Our objectives were to map and describe the roles played by web-based mainstream media and social media as platforms for vaccination-related public debates and discussions during the Polio crisis in Israel in 2013: where...
Article
Abstract Recent developments in sensory and communication technologies have made the development of portable air-quality (AQ) micro-sensing units (MSUs) feasible. These MSUs allow AQ measurements in many new applications, such as ambulatory exposure analyses and citizen science. Typically, the performance of these devices is assessed using the mean...
Article
This paper reports a study using a quasi-experimental design to examine whether an academic writing course in English can improve graduate students’ academic and popular science writing skills. To address this issue, we designed pre- and post-assessment tasks, an intervention assessment task and a scoring rubric. The pre- and post-assessment tasks...
Article
Full-text available
The public communication of science and technology largely depends on its framing in the news media, but scientists’ role in this process has only been explored indirectly. This study focuses on storied accounts told by scientists when asked to present their research or provide expert advice in the course of a news interview. A total of 150 items f...
Article
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Although the scientific community increasingly recognizes that its communication with the public may shape civic engagement with science, few studies have characterized how this communication occurs online. Social media plays a growing role in this engagement, yet it is not known if or how different platforms support different types of engagement....
Data
Tweet about TOTEM detectors, posted on Twitter English. (JPG)
Data
Corresponding tweet about TOTEM detectors, posted on Twitter French. The English tweet had an average number of click-throughs. In contrast, the equivalent French tweet had 2.5 times the average click-throughs. The French text was more enigmatic and said less than the English, encouraging readers to click to find out more. (JPG)
Data
Facebook lifetime total reach statistics. (XLS)
Data
Digital Traces of Public Engagement with Particle Physics on CERN's Social Media Platforms. (XLS)
Article
At the end of 2013, the Israeli army radio station Galei Zahal decided to revise the format of The University on Air, a radio program that had served as a unique forum for academia and the media in Israel for almost four decades. Launched in 1977, and with over 6,000 aired lectures, the program, with its long history, is a telling case of academia...
Chapter
“Assessment” at the intersection of science communication and science education addresses what people take away from the process of interaction with popular science media (such as news and documentaries), with social media (such as Twitter feeds or Facebook posts), or after engaging in public engagement activities (such as science festivals and sci...
Article
Full-text available
Science museums often introduce plays to liven up exhibits, attract visitors to specific exhibitions, and help visitors to “digest” difficult content. Most previous research has concentrated on viewers’ learning outcomes. This study uses performance and spectator analyses from the field of theater studies to explore the link between producers’ inte...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This symposium brings together the theoretical and practical tools of scientists in both the social and educational sciences in order to examine the types of interaction, knowledge construction, social organization and power structures that: (a) occur spontaneously in technology-enhanced learning communities or (b) can be created by design. We refe...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Modern society presents its citizens with many day-to-day needs that influence the quality of life and are linked to science and technology such as transportation, medical information and nutrition. Given that science is a major facet of modern life, and the mass media are its greatest form of dissemination, it is crucial to examine what informatio...
Article
Full-text available
Many students feel the curriculum is detached from their lives and interests. Indeed, about half the questions asked by high school biology students are not addressed by the curriculum. This study presents a strategy to incorporate students’ curiosity questions into the curriculum as a way to reduce the disparity between students’ interests and cur...
Article
Can questions sent to Open-Educational-Resource (OER) websites such as Ask-An-Expert serve as indicators for students’ interest in science? This issue was examined using an online questionnaire which included an equal number of questions about the topics “space” and “nutrition” randomly selected from three different sources: a 5th-grade science tex...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Despite the importance of understanding evolution for many scientific concepts, its acceptance in many countries is low. Acceptance of evolution is often hindered by prior conceptions that develop at an early age. Museums and other informal learning environments can play a significant role in modifying such prior conceptions and prompt conceptual c...
Article
Full-text available
Some science-related events stimulate public interest, and create a teachable moment in which the underlying science temporarily becomes more interesting. Here, media attention, expressed by Google News reference volume, and changes in information seeking behavior, expressed by Google Trends, were used to estimate the length of a teachable moment f...
Article
Full-text available
We present a case study of a lesson that incorporates high school students’ interests in heredity alongside the requirements of the curriculum. This was done by collecting students’ questions in advance and inserting them in strategic places in the biology curriculum, thus creating a ‘shadow curriculum’. The idea underlying the lesson plan is not t...
Article
Full-text available
Leaders of the scientific community encourage scientists to learn effective science communication, including honing the skill to discuss science with little professional jargon. However, avoiding jargon is not trivial for scientists for several reasons, and this demands special attention in teaching and evaluation. Despite this, no standard measure...
Article
Full-text available
Which extrinsic cues motivate people to search for science-related information? For many science-related search queries, media attention and time during the academic year are highly correlated with changes in information seeking behavior (expressed by changes in the proportion of Google science-related searches). The data mining analysis presented...
Article
Full-text available
In order to bridge the existing gap between biology curricula and students’ interests in biology, a strategy for identifying students’ interest based on their questions and integrating them into the curriculum was developed. To characterize the level of generalizability of students’ science interests over 600 high school students from Portugal, Tur...
Article
Full-text available
High school students’ views regarding the best ways to adapt biology studies to fit their interests were explored using 87 written questionnaires containing closed-ended and open-ended questions. The closed-ended questionnaires indicated that the participants are very positive regarding their experience as biology learners and highly interested in...
Article
Full-text available
There is increasing evidence of a gap between curricular requirements and what students actually want to know. One of the factors influencing what is taught in the classroom is teachers’ attitudes towards integrating their students’ interests. This study investigated what prompts high-school teachers who prepare students for national matriculation...