The Department of Science Teaching conducts research in various fields, such as teacher professional development, innovative learning environments, use of digital platforms, and the promotion of personalization. The goal of the research is to improve the quality of teaching and learning and to respond to challenges in the frontiers of science education research. The research includes different components: planning, recruitment of participants, execution, regulation, documentation, data analysis and reporting.
The primary goal of the IRB-EDU (Institutional Review Board of Education) committee is to set ethical standards in science and mathematics education research, and guarantee their application in the different components of the research. Such committees currently operate in Israeli academic institutions and worldwide.
The IRB-EDU aims to enable researchers to adhere to these standards yet to carry out their research. Since the approval by institutional review boards is also required in applications for research funding, in scientific publications, etc., alignment with international standards is important.
The activity of the ethics committee (IRB-EDU) is based on the major principles published by the Ministry of Education in 13.1.22..
Guidelines for Submitting an Application to the Committee
The PI is responsible for submitting an application to the committee to get an approval to execute the research, including information about:
- Project details
- Source of data/information
- Research tools
- Private information
- Vulnerable population
- Relevant documents (for uploading)
Studies and Tracks
The committee will discuss applications in one of three tracks:
- Express: e.g., secondary use of unidentified data/information
- Expedited: e.g., evaluation of educational materials and programs with unidentified participants
- Full committee: e.g., participants from vulnerable populations
Research Involving Private Information
Confidentiality will be observed according to the Weizmann Institute’s procedures.
The Weizmann Institute takes many precautions to guard confidential information. Personal data will be encrypted and security measures will be taken to minimize the risks that identifying details of participants will be revealed, including separating the identifying details from the research data being collected. The data will be kept on servers in the EU, the US or elsewhere. Access to the data and the computers containing it will be limited only to people who require such access for the study. If and when and results of the study are published, the identity of the participants will be kept secret. Personal details will be retained only until it is established that the Institute no longer requires them for confirming the results or for regulation or reporting purposes, internal or external, or other legal obligations.
Future studies, collaborations and secondary uses of the data will be done according to the Institute’s policy.
It is possible that the head researcher will, in the future, conduct further studies and/or cooperate with other research groups both in and outside of the Weizmann institute, or with commercial groups (including the monetization of any intellectual property that might arise from the study) in Israel or abroad, and for this reason data from this study will be provided to said groups, under the condition that they agree to protect the data at least as strictly as we would, and also subject to further approval of the Weizmann Institute’s Ethics Committee (IRB-EDU).