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Title: Science education in the service of bridging the Israeli-Palestinian dispute over water resources
Authors: Zuzovsky, Ruth
Levinger-Dressler, Miri
Yakir, Ruth
Wubbles, Theo
Eijkelhof, Harrie
Keywords: Education -- Mediterranean Region
Students -- Attitudes
Children and peace
Water-supply -- Israel
Conflict management -- Israel
Conflict management -- Palestine
Science -- Study and teaching -- Israel -- Curricula
Science teachers
Issue Date: 2003
Publisher: University of Malta. Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Educational Research
Citation: Zuzovsky, R., Levinger-Dressler, M., Yakir, R., Wubbles, T. & Eijkelhof, H. (2003). Science education in the service of bridging the Israeli-Palestinian dispute over water resources. Mediterranean Journal of Educational Studies, 8(1), 161-185
Abstract: In 1994 an educational program aimed at changing prevailing attitudes to favor peace and coexistence in the region was launched in the Israeli educational system. The program focused on the crucial conflict over water resources between Israel and its neighboring Arab countries – an issue at the heart of the Israeli-Arab conflict. The rationale of the educational program was based on cognitive approaches to attitudinal change and conflict termination, assumption being that providing relevant, ‘major’ information (Shamir and Shamir, 1996) would prompt the restructuring of existing salient beliefs regarding peace and cooperation and later the formation of attitudes in favor of them. A comprehensive curriculum focusing on water management issues was constructed and implemented in teachers colleges and schools. Findings from an evaluation study that followed the implementation of the curriculum showed large knowledge gains but only minor attitudinal changes, disappointing findings that led to the consideration of an alternative model to attitudinal change, incorporating a value component. In the new model, which evolved from Fishbein and Ajzen’s (1975) theory of ‘reasoned action’, values function as mediating components between beliefs and attitudes. Learning activities aimed at decision-making in relevant dilemmatic situations enabled the learners to become aware of the values that govern their decision-making and allowed them to critically assess their views and attitudes. In light of these findings some thoughts on the future of this evolving project conclude the paper.
ISSN: 1024-5375
Appears in Collections:MJES, Volume 8, No. 1 (2003)
MJES, Volume 8, No. 1 (2003)

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