The Role of Technology in Increasing Student Interest in Genetics: Field Trip versus Online Interaction

Stella Magid, Tali Tal, Yael Kali

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


With the aim of increasing interest in genetics, we used a Web-based module about simple-inheritance and adapted it for an Israeli context. We increased the relevancy of the module through an anchoring (real) story of fundraising for cystic-fibrosis (CF) patients. We also added interactions with CF patients using two types of interactions: (1) a field-trip to a CF hospital unit; (2)online interaction with a patient. The goal was to explore the learning with the module and determine how the hospital-visit and the online-interaction with a patient contributed to the students’ interest and understanding of genetics. One 10th grade class visited the hospital and another one communicated with a patient. By using pre/post Knowledge-Integration tests, a feedback questionnaire, observations in class and the students’ recorded work in the web-based module, we found that the adapted-module, even without the field-trip and the online-interaction contributed to students’ interest in genetics. Project features such as involving students in making decisions were crucial in getting students engaged and promoting their interest in genetics. There was no difference in knowledge acquisition, but there was a significant difference between the groups’ engagement.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 6th Chais conference on instructional technologies research
Place of PublicationRa'anana
Publisherהאוניברסיטה הפתוחה
Number of pages6
StatePublished - 17 Feb 2011
Externally publishedYes


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