Bar-Ilan University | President’s Report 2022

31 Scholar, Practitioner Together with educators from the AMIT network of primary, secondary, and technological schools, the faculty pioneered a first-of-its-kind teacher-training model that blends handson experience with academic research. By offering realtime suggestions from experts for transferring researchers’ knowledge to the field, the model—which the faculty hopes will be adopted by other school networks and universities—will close the gaps between theory and practice that weaken new teachers’ performance. Immersive Research Spearheaded by the Center for Technology in Special Education’s director, Prof. Adina Shamir, the faculty’s new immersive classroom is amulti-sensory, multi-media space for applied research on teaching technologies. Allowing students to engage with their surroundings through touch, sight, smell, and sound, the immersive classroom is a living laboratory for testing the uses and impact of interactive education. Reality Check Prof. Tova Michalski, head of the faculty’s Learning and Teaching Sciences Program, is studying the benefits and drawbacks of integrating virtual reality into the classroom. She is also exploring the role of simulated scenarios in helping new teachers develop skills and build their confidence. Sage Insights Part of Bar-Ilan’s efforts to become a global university, the faculty opened a new, English-language course on classical Jewish insights for contemporary education. Taught by Prof. Eli Holzer, author of the acclaimed A Philosophy of Havruta: Understanding and Teaching the Art of Text Study in Pairs, the course offers students from different countries and cultures a window onto the wisdom of traditional Jewish educators and its application to the challenges of teaching and learning today.