The main aim of the course is to enable the participants to experience, on a small scale, some of the contemporary research that is currently carried out in the field of life sciences at the WIS, by allowing direct acquaintances with scientists in their laboratories. During three mini-rotations, which last four meetings each, participants will practice the basic steps of scientific research: reading primary literature relevant to the scientific field, defining research questions or desired applications, planning and performing experiments, and finally analyzing the resulting scientific data. At the end of each mini-rotation, participants will be required to submit an assignment, and a presentation. At the end of the course, participants will be required to submit an educational project including learning materials and assessment tool, based on their own initiatives and ideas as well as acquired knowledge in the relevant scientific fields. These educational projects are aimed at bridging between the dynamics of biological discoveries and high-school biology education, while adapting practices employed by scientists to the practices by which students and teachers accumulate and advance their knowledge within the discipline of biology.
Students will be exposed to and experience first-hand the characteristics of the cutting edge of authentic modern research in the field of life sciences. They will read research papers and review articles related to the research field and project of each lab, and will practice all the steps of scientific investigation, starting from raising research question, through designing and conducting experiments, collecting and analyzing data, discussing the results, and finally drawing a model or conclusions. During each session, students will become familiar with the background theories and principles, the prevailing paradigm/s, key experimental approaches, and common methodologies. Students will acquire contemporary and advanced knowledge and skills and will be able to process and adapt it to the high school students' level.