Internationalization at Home

 Another year of successful international cooperation has gone by.  The cooperation was a part of the online course "Learning and Teaching" in the Masters for Hebrew Language .

Lead by Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin

Here are results of a short survey done with Mentimeter at the end of the course. Students summarized reflections as well. This was done in teams on Padlet- see below:

What are the three main things I would keep from the course?


Get to know different cultures

That you can learn from everyone

 Practice online learning

To conduct a discussion

Tolerance and patience


Mutual respect between team members

Accept others regardless of differences

 Comparison between Hebrew and Russian study methods and prepositions

 Unconditional love.

Students course reflections:

Beer Sheva team no' 2:

We would like to say that this course is a very necessary course in our profession, as women of education for the future we think that it is necessary to combine all the sectors, to get to know different cultures, different ethnicities, new and varied topics.
The course was delivered online. We think that this way is indeed very effective, in that this way is accessible to all participants.
In the lessons we taught there was full cooperation, we learned a lot about the Arab sector and their way of life and customs.
We conducted the lessons in a respectful manner, each in turn had spoken, we allowed each other to express their opinions.
A main and important topic that we discussed with the students is the violence that exists in the school and we proposed several ways to deal with this phenomenon and try to eradicate it.
We think that this is a very important topic and we should talk about it especially in the field of teaching.
The only difficulty we experienced in this course is finding a common time to work together because everyone has their own individual problems but, despite the difficulty, we managed to bridge the gaps and find time to implement the course in the best possible way.

Moscow team no' 1:

The "learning and teaching" course helped us believe in ourselves and speak Hebrew with other teachers and students from Israel. We thank our teachers for their patience and excellent organization of the joint meetings. During the course we learned about grammatical issues and different cultures. Learning Hebrew has become much more interesting, and we will definitely continue to improve the language ourselves.

Unique Debate class with John Abbot University


By Regina Benchetrit-Head of the EPiC unit (English Proficiency in Conversation)

As part of the Debate Course this year (2022/23) in the English Department, two international classes were held via Zoom, including students from John Abbot University in Canada and Kaye College students.

The students from both institutions watched three pre-defined films together, stated their opinion about the issues that came up, and discussed each film as well as other topics

 The discussions involved topics such as discrimination and exclusion based on different backgrounds (e.g., ethnicity, gender), women's status in society, specifically Bedouin women's status in Israel.

 For the Canadian students, the joint meetings enabled a more straightforward and authentic communication without filters with our students, while for the English Majoring students, this was an opportunity to talk about their daily life directly in English, as well as to examine their own set of beliefs and values from a different perspective.

This Canadian-Israeli collaborative project has been going on for the past few years now.

In the past, the project was initiated and led by Dr. Liron Ohayon Shokty in the Multicultural Unit, and later by Ms. Irena Lavi at the EPIC Unit

"Beer Sheva-Moscow-Warsaw" (2022-2023) – an international online project in the field of teaching Hebrew as an additional language
under the direction of Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin

This year (2022-2023) we continue the international online project specializing in the Hebrew language as part of Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin's course "Learning and teaching – teaching Hebrew as a second language in an electronic environment". The innovation this year is: the students from the University of Warsaw also joined the project.

You can read about the first international project "Beer Sheva-Moscow" in Blanky-Karlin's article (2022) here:

On December 11, 2022, a Zoom meeting was held between the Jewish and Bedouin students from Kaye College and between the students at Kosygin Russian State University in Moscow and the students at the University of Warsaw. During the Zoom meeting, the students from the three countries introduced themselves, talked about the importance of the project both for improving knowledge of Hebrew as a second language and providing the tools to teach it in an electronic environment, and for becoming familiar with each other's culture.

In the next stage all of the students were divided into rooms: in each room there was a team of Jewish teachers from Israel and two teams of their students (our Bedouin students and students from abroad). All learning in the course is cooperative, and each team of Jewish teachers is responsible for both teams of students. In the rooms, the students discussed the holidays in Judaism, The difficulties of the Hebrew language, the topics that the students whose Hebrew is their second or additional language will want to focus on later in the course and more.
Finally, everyone returned to the main room, filled out the survey, and concluded the meeting. The reactions during the meeting were enthusiastic, and the students were very happy that they were given the opportunity to meet with people from other sectors and other countries.

On 18.12.22, a meeting took place in a similar format with the second half of the class. The meeting started in the last moments of the World Cup. After dividing the students into rooms, the teacher teams discussed with their student teams mainly about the Hanukkah holiday since the meeting took place in Hannukkah eve – after the lighting of the first candle.

Below are some of the students' responses to the course as it has been conducted so far:

We want to say that a project like this really gives us, as we said in the lesson, a lot of knowlage about multiculturalism, Accepting despite the difference . We think that a project like this allows us to learn from different experiences, strengthen the language, think outside of the box, that is how can we as a society learn different things from other societies. How can we as teachers teach our students about this concept of "multicultural". We learned that every holiday has a certain background that is an interesting story. We realized that most of the teachers emphasize that you need to know and respect others thier behaviors they have.

Today's meeting was stunning and fascinating, an international meeting that started with the World Cup…. We as a group from the Bedouin sector, want to teach the beautiful things and norms of the Bedouin sector; the rituals that exist in the society and the values that characterize it.

The truth is, in the beginning it was difficult for us to connect with the group members, but in the end we did. Thanks and happy holiday!


The project is very important and helps us meet new people from different parts of the world and also the Bedouin students who are with us at the college. The first Zoom meeting went nicely and pleasantly, we laughed and enjoyed passing on our knowledge to the students from the other teams, answering questions and getting to know each other. We will be happy to teach the teams later on the topic of writing – writing letters or writing a short story about a character.
The difficulties we encountered were mainly language difficulties, but we manage to understand each other and speak fluently after all.


We see the project as very important.
The fact that we are also teachers in our professional role allows us to experiment in another way as well.
The "students" from our group are very curious to know and learn new things and so are we.
As a result, we are given the opportunity to learn in an interesting and unique way.
So far we have learned that it is possible to teach and learn using all kinds of different options and methods.

The Zoom meeting united us and allowed us to dedicate ourselves more to the special process.
We are sure that as long as we show willingness we can learn a lot from our "students" and vice versa.


Warsaw University

Expansion of the collaboration with John Abbott College (Montreal, Canada) – Advanced 2 course in EPIC

We are delighted to announce that our collaboration with John Abbott College (Montreal, Canada) has expanded this year. In the fall semester 2021-2022 we offered our first brand new Advanced 2 (online) course in the EPIC (English for Purposes of International Communication) department, led by Ms. Irena Levy. Our students had the opportunity to develop, foster and practice their debating skills while preparing to argue the affirmative and negative side of the debate along with their Canadian peers. In addition, this collaborative project focused on developing students’ critical thinking and their ability to evaluate and respond to different arguments and claims. Finally, this course helped our students expand their general and specialized vocabularies for reading, writing and speaking. We look forward to meeting our Canadian partners in the Spring semester.

Ms. Irena Levy, EPIC course instructor, Kaye College

Two new international projects: "Be'er-Sheva – Moscow and Be'er-Sheva Kiev"

 By Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin 


A new and exciting online collaboration has started in the academic year of 2020-2021, between Kaye Academic College of Education and Kosygin Russian State University (link to the University’s site). The participants in this joint projects include Israeli students at Kaye College, studying in the course Hebrew as a Second Language in an online environment in the Department of Hebrew Language led by Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin, and Russian students, studying at the The Kosygin State University of Russia, Department of Philology and Linguoculturology, led by Dr. Yulia Kondrakova.

During the course at Kaye College, the students from the Jewish sector function as ‘the teachers’, while the Bedouin and  Russian students are treated as ‘students’. Later during the course, both groups will switch positions. Thus, students who function as ‘teachers’ have the chance to hands-on practice Hebrew instruction as a second (or foreign) language, while ‘students’, will enrich their knowledge in written and spoken Hebrew as their second or foreign language.

The aim of the project is not only to deepen the knowledge of the Hebrew Language and instruction, and  to increase the exposure of students from both countries to new ways of teaching, but also to create a multi-cultural discourse among all participants.

Throughout the course, teachers of both institutions will strive that students from both countries succeed in contributing their knowledge and experience to the rest of the learners in the course.  Therefore, during the course relevant issues will be jointly and actively sought after, by students and course instructors alike, so that students from all backgrounds – Jewish, Bedouin, and Russian, can learn effectively from one another.

The collaboration is accompanied by recently signed MOU between the institutions: Kaye Academic College of Education and Kosygin Russian State University.


On December 24th 2020, the first online synchronous Zoom meeting took place between the two institutions, in which took part Jewish and Bedouin students from Kaye College in Israel, and Russian students from the University of Moscow. It was a very successful meeting. Almost everyone participated in it, and the atmosphere was very friendly and warm.

After a short introduction, the students from both groups began to get to know each other. Each student spoke about herself, asked questions and described her impressions from the course so far. Next, students were divided into breakout rooms according to teams which included 'student as teachers' & 'students'. The course instructors monitored each room to see what was going on. In the rooms, the 'teachers' pointed out and corrected the main speech errors of their 'students', and later continued with an open conversation about the process of learning.

Finally, students returned to the main room and were asked to answer a short survey about their experience. Results were shared with the participants, and the joint session was concluded with a taste of more….

At the end of the first semester, there was another new activity that was initiated by Kaye College course instructor, Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin: Each team of teachers met without their course instructors. In the session, each 'student' team and each 'teacher' team taught one lesson on a variety of topics they had chosen previously

Below are some examples of enthusiastic reactions of the Russian students, who were very pleased and excited to speak in Hebrew.

"…I acquired a lot of new knowledge and experience in Hebrew speaking. It was exciting and I Enjoyed our meeting. We spoke about the differences between Russian and Hebrew expressions, Prepositions, Proverbs of Subjects and  Complements, and we played very interesting language games. I want to thank our wonderful teachers for the amazing lesson, care and patience. "

It should also be noted that their Hebrew level is quite high due to the fact that some of the students are studying for their Masters Degree and most are advanced students in philology and language. Furthermore, two students have lived in Israel for a while and some of them teach Hebrew!

The  Jewish students talked about how the course corresponded with what they have learned during their studies of their specialization degree, and what elements enabled them to implement their knowledge practically.

"For us it was an extraordinary experience that we have not yet experienced in our studies at the academy. It was an enriching, instructive and especially fascinating experience, due to the fact that we have met students who are thousands of miles from us yet we all share a very exciting common denominator, which is the love for language and of Hebrew. Later in the evening we also became friends on Facebook, so we were able to discover interesting facts about each other. For example, we learned about the extensive activities of one of the students from Moscow in the field of Hebrew, namely, the fact that she volunteers to teach Hebrew, which moved all of us".

The Bedouin students were very pleased to be a part of this project, and shared that they have learned many things from their Jewish teachers. They also use some of the articles from the course in other courses they take. The atmosphere in the online class with the Jewish students was warm and friendly. It also seemed as if they have already known each other. The Bedouin students thanked their Jewish teachers very much for the fascinating lesson on the Jewish holidays. The Jewish teachers also learned from their students (the topic chosen was the multiplicity of women in the Bedouin sector), and were enthusiastic about teaching Hebrew buildings (as an example of a linguistic subject taught by the Bedouin).

Beer-Sheva-Moscow: Continuation of the project in the second semester and its completion  


In the second semester, students from both countries (both teachers and students) engaged in these activities:

  • Searched for relevant videos for teaching Hebrew as a second language upload them, and discussed about them with their peers.
  • Conducting written discussions about controversial issues, chosen by the students themselves ("What are the disadvantages of eating meat, and what are its advantages?", "Should you insist with students About writing with a pen instead of a using a computer? Why? "," How should students who do not turn on the camera, be treated during a zoom lesson? ")
  • Conducted oral discussions with each student team together with the teaching staff without my presence as part of the work process that began with the previous written activity
  • Critical reading of an academic article in the field of education and language and uploading the written response in the course forum.
  • A concluding zoom session for everyone, which included: summarizing the course, and giving the stage to each participant while referring to the learning and teaching process Splitting the students into three rooms (teachers + students), in which the discussion took place following the academic article previously read as part of the work process; filling out the survey called: "What did I learn in the project?" and sharing its results
  • Group reflection on a Padlet board.

In conclusion, the main contribution of this unique international online venture to the three sectors was to strengthen both the linguistic-professional aspect and the pedagogical-digital aspects, while implementing the collaborative learning model in synchronous and asynchronous e-learning and nurturing academic and multicultural discourse written and spoken.

The main role of the lecturer in the course was to expose all students to new methods of teaching Hebrew as a second language, to promote their academic reading and written discourse and speech within the groups with the help of. In addition, the course created an interesting encounter between the students from Israel and Russia, which led to cooperation between the teachers and their students. It can be said that significant learning took place in the course, which was made possible thanks to the full cooperation of the students, who, without a doubt, influenced the nature of the course, and contributed greatly to its success. The international cooperation between us is expected to continue next year as well.

The main points that emerged from the reflections of the course participants are: Meaningful learning experience, innovation in teaching, improving disciplinary knowledge, collaborative learning and the joy of learning, exposure to another culture, broadening horizons, encouraging academic and multicultural discourse, being able to express different opinions freely and giving the stage to everyone equally.

A continuation and Expansion of an International Joint Project of Teaching Hebrew as an Additional Language

by Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin

During 2021, as part of the course "Learning and Teaching – Teaching Hebrew as a Second Language in an E-Learning Environment," taught at specializing in the Hebrew Language Department at Kaye College, Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin led two international online projects: "Beer Sheva – Moscow" and "Beer Sheva – Kiev"

The  former involves Jewish and Bedouin female students studying for a B.Ed. Degree at Kaye College and graduate students studying for a Master's degree at the Russian State University of Kosygin in Moscow.

The latter project involves Jewish and Bedouin students studying for a B.Ed. Degree at Kaye College, and the students studying for a bachelor's degree at V.I. Vernadsky Taurida National University.

A General Description of Both Projects

A total of 54 students participate in both projects (33 students in the first project, and 21 in the second project). Students were divided into fifteen teams as part of the collaborative learning models. Teaching in the online projects was integrated: asynchronous teaching in the "Moodle" interface, to which all course participants from Israel and abroad are registered, along with synchronous teaching via Zoom, which enables linguistic and multicultural exchanges between all students.

It should be noted that the international project "Beer Sheva – Moscow" began in 2020 as part of the agreement on professional cooperation between Kaye College in Israel and the Russian State University of Kosygin in Moscow, signed in October 2020 in the midst of COVID-19; while the international project "Beer Sheva – Kiev" started only in late 2021. These two projects were created as a continuation and expansion of an innovative semester course "Learning and Teaching – Teaching Hebrew as a Second Language in an E-Learning Environment" for Jewish and Bedouin students together, built by Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin and taught at the Hebrew Language Department at Kaye College in the years 2019-2020.

In both projects the students from the Jewish sector act as 'teachers', and the students from the Bedouin sector and from abroad act as 'students'. Thus, the teachers experience teaching Hebrew as another language, and the students enrich their knowledge of written and spoken Hebrew as a second or additional language.

During the course, the teachers and students take turns in their roles, and all learning takes place in a synchronous and asynchronous online environment under the guidance of the lecturer. The aims of the course are to deepen the knowledge in the study of Hebrew, to expose all students to new methods of teaching it, and allow for an academic and multicultural discourse among all participants. Learning is collaborative, teaching is culturally responsive, and assessment is formative.

The Online Sessions: "Beer Sheva-Moscow" Project

On December 12, 2021, as part of the international online project "Beer Sheva-Moscow", a linguistic and multicultural Zoom meeting took place. The meeting was attended by 33 students: the Jewish and Bedouin students from Kaye College and the students from the Russian State University of Kosygin in Moscow. The atmosphere was friendly and very warm, and the learning was effective with enthusiastic responses.

The international meeting opened with a free face-to-face conversation in the whole class plenum. Afterward, all participants were divided into four breakout rooms. In each room there was a team of student-teachers (from the Jewish sector at Kaye College) along with a team of participants who were role playing students (from the Bedouin sector at Kaye and from the University of Moscow). Inside the rooms interesting discussions took place on a variety of academic and social topics prepared by the students in advance. At the end of the meeting all participants went back to the main room and summed up the meeting, and filled in a survey about the continuation of the project. Each team then delivered an interim summary of the course on a Padlet board.

The meeting was attended by Dr. Haim Dihi, the head of the Department of Hebrew Language at Kaye College, and by our partner from the University of Moscow, Dr. Yulia Kondrakova.



The Online Sessions: "Beer Sheva-Kiev" Project

On December 19, 2021, a linguistic and multicultural zoom meeting was held as part of the international online project "Beer Sheva-Kiev" in a similar format. The meeting was attended by 21 students: Jewish and Bedouin students from Kaye College and students from the Department of Oriental Languages ​​at Tevrida the Verandsky National University in Kiev (Ukraine).

The atmosphere at the meeting was lively, very friendly and stress-free. Thanks to the students from the two countries who attended the meeting, the learning was significant and effective. The responses received were enthusiastic, and without a doubt, the meeting left a taste for more.

The meeting was attended by Ms. Olga Yaakovleva, a lecturer in the Department of Eastern Languages ​​at the Verandsky National University in Kiev, our partner in the project.

Students' Experiences

Following are some of the students' selected responses:

"The course "Learning and Teaching – Teaching Hebrew in an E-Learning Environment" is completely different in nature from the other courses taught at the college. This course allows us as Jewish students to be exposed to the personal and academic world of Arab students. Also, the fact that we serve as teachers for the Arab students increases our sense of competence in everything related to teaching and the degree of responsibility we have towards this course. The encounter with the other sector allowed us to be exposed to the knowledge of Arab students in the field of the Hebrew language, and it also allowed us to be exposed to the cultural and social world of girls from the other sector. As part of the introductory forum, we were given the opportunity to introduce ourselves to the course participants, and to get to know the course members in more depth."

"Reading the articles that describe in detail the nature of the course allowed us to understand what the goals of the course are and what we will be engaging in. After reading the articles, the students from the other sector were asked to answer a number of questions concerning the content of the articles. The feedback we wrote to the "students" answers allowed us to experience evaluation of the students' knowledge in the field of reading comprehension and writing. It should be noted that writing the feedback was very significant for us, and while doing so, we felt that we were learning no less than we were teaching. Moreover, we were very happy that we were given the opportunity to choose for ourselves the topic of discussion. Beyond that, we were very happy that we were able to reach an agreement on the topic of discussion."

"In general, it can be said that the asynchronous learning in the course in question benefits the course members, as it allows its students to perform the tasks on their own time, and manage the learning as they see fit, along with professional and effective guidance from the course leader, Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin."

"After determining the topic of discussion, we began rapidly planning the joint discussion. There is no doubt that we were very excited for the zoom meeting, and this is also reflected in the correspondence of the team members in our shared WhatsApp group. The zoom meeting was fascinating and very instructive, during which we listened with thirst to the words of the members of the second team regarding the holidays of the Arab sector. It also seemed that our words raised the curiosity of the second team."

"The atmosphere at the zoom meeting was very pleasant and respectful, during which we were invited to get to know each other better."

"The "Learn and Teach" course is a different kind of course, a course that at first we did not know what awaited us during the semester, then things became clear and we knew what the role of each of us is and the purpose of the course. We think this course is very interesting and meaningful, we have achieved and acquired a lot regarding the importance of collaborative learning between different sectors, collaborative learning will help the interaction between two sectors. It is also an important component in the process of social and cognitive development."

"… the zoom session was great, we saw our Jewish teachers face to face even though he was on screens, and we were able to get to know them better. There was a very beautiful conversation between us, each of us introduced herself .. and there is no doubt that together we managed to break through the barrier of shyness that was at the beginning. This encounter achieved a kind of cooperation and acquaintance with the other. In addition, we were able to get to know different sectors, different cultures and also other specialties, different from our specialties, so there were differences between our specialties for the Jewish sector specialties, which contributed to the interpretation of the projects' goal."

Kosygin Russian State University

Dr. Yulia Kondrakova

Dr. Irena Blanky-Karlin

Verandsky National University in Kiev (Ukraine)

Verandsky National University in Kiev

Olga Yaakovleva

On mid April 2021 Kaye College English department took advantage of the development in distant learning during Covid-19, and invited Professor Romulo Neves from Madeira Island – an educator, English teacher and a specialist in special education and inclusive teaching to give a workshop on inclusing education and practical tips to implement in the classroom.

It was part of the Methodological  Worskhop for 2nd and 3rd year English Majors. During the workshop the students got practical tips to use in the classroom to enhance learning and to remove barriers, to cater for various types of learners.

How to organize a classroom in such a way that all the pupils will be involved- following the Universal Design for Learning approach. How to deal with hyperactive pupils? How to help pupils with learing difficulties during the lesson? How to engage learners through authentic and everyday use of English language? What is the role of technology in promoting an inclusive classroom?  These questions and many more were addressed during the workshop.

During the Practice Teaching Week the students are asked to implement at least 2 suggestions/ideas /tips they were exposed to during the workshop into their lessons.

As part of their Practical Training, Kaye College 3rd year English majors taught a lesson on Zoom to 7th graders in Madeira Island. Prior to teaching the lesson, a link to the shared Padlet board was sent to the pupils so they can write topics and questions that interest them about Israel. After the Padlet board was full of interesting and challenging questions, the English Department students grouped the questions into different categories ( general facts about Israel, school, holidays, hobbies, famous people, etc). Each student chose a category to present in an engaging and interesting way, using various tools to enhance pupils’ learning and involvement in the learning process. Madeirian pupils were surprised to learn that Israel is a country of immigrants, of many nations and three main religions, that both Hebrew and Arabic are spelled from right to left, that one can swim in the Red Sea in Eilat and after taking a ride to the North to ski on Hermon mountain,  and that many inventions they use every day ( flash drive, WAZE app, cherry tomatoes, etc)- are all Israeli inventions.

In the end, the pupils connected to the Kahoot app to answer trivia about Israel.

Hopefully, there will be more lessons like this one in the future. Pupils expressed their desire to learn more about Netta Barzilai- the Israeli winner of Eurovision contest, and to learn the winning song- I am not your Toy.

By Dr. Inna Smirnov

EIP – a unique international course at the college

EIP (English for International Purposes) is part of a larger Erasmus+ project called ‘Internationalization by Innovative Technology’, in short In2It. As such, it is part of the EU program for education, training, youth and sport.

The course operates since fall 2018. The main objective of the course is promoting internationalization in higher education institutions, with the aim of boosting students’ skills and employability in the 21st century.

The course does that by teaching students to prepare for the international job market, participate in an international academic context, discuss topics related to internationalization and create meaningful and effective presentations.

During its time of operation, the course varies in terms of the participating institutions. The core always consists of at least a couple of institutions from Europe and a couple from Israel. Originally the collaboration was done between 7 institutions from Israel and 7 institutions from Europe and each year the numbers differ. In the spring of 2020, there have been 3 Israeli and 3 European institutions: Kaye Academic College of Education, Sapir Academic College and Tel-Hai Academic College in Israel, and Universita Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (Italy), Die Pedagogische Hochshule Oberosterreich (Austria) and University of Opole (Poland) in Europe.

The technological tools employed in the course include the main internet site in which the course is done – the EIP site. Within it, various digital platforms are used. For instance, at the beginning of the course the students are invited to tell about themselves via a link to Padlet, an online message board in which each post is shared by all students and can be replied to. The students then post text together with pictures and correspond with each other for the first time. Other tools include the use of videos that student may upload to the site for various assignments, a presentation tool Prezi in which students learn a new way to present their CVs, online videos for listening and learning and zoom sessions in which the students meet and converse with each other. All of these tools complement the use of texts and questions that are employed in other courses as well and are also present here.

The course offers a unique experience for the students, as apparent by feedback that we receive each semester. Aside from the novel way of studying, which most students have not encountered before, the types of new experiences which are the most reported are the students' interactions with other individuals from European countries, getting to know new ways of thinking and new customs and making connections that would no doubt benefit them in the future.

Dr. Lavi Wolf,

Lecturer at the English and EPIC (English for International and Communication Purposes) departments.

May 2019

Collaboration has been continuing between Dr. Doron Narkiss of the English Department at the College and Prof. Rosalind Horowitz of University of Texas at San Antonio. This project aimed to elicit and analyze students' perceptions to border literacy, in multi-ethnic and multi-cultural societies. In UTSA as at Kaye the student population is mixed, and different programs for different populations may run parallel, whether out of necessity or according to government and Education Ministry guidelines, in schools and therefore also in pre-service training. Prof. Horowitz has coined the phrase "border literacy" to convey the idea that what is taught "on the border", by whom, and to whom, matters a great deal; our interest at this stage of the research is to see how the students define it. Over the past year we have been collecting students' guided responses to Gloria Anzaldua's writing, particularly to the chapter "How to Tame a Wild Tongue" from Borderlands/La Frontera. 

The University of Texas at San Antonio

Prof. Rosalind Horowitz

By: Dr. Doron Narkiss & Dr. Nurit Basman-MorIN2IT

Over the last three years, Kaye College has partnered in the Erasmus+ project called in2it – internationalization through novel technology. The fruits of the project are four international online courses – in other words, courses which can be accessed and participated in via the Internet. Students from 14 institutes of higher education – 7 in Europe and 7 in Israel – are taking part in the courses. All courses were developed by international groups from these institutions.

The EIP Course

One of these courses, English for Internalization Purposes or EIP was developed, and taught this year (2018) by a team headed by Dr. Doron Narkiss of the Department of English at Kaye Academic College of Education; Dr. Narkiss taught the course at the College.

The objective of the course is to support learning and shared practice of English in pairs and small groups, with emphasis placed on developing knowledge and language proficiency which will serve as a means of communication for research, employment, cooperation and presentation. The course is divided into 6 units, each of which serves as the foundation of the next unit. Accordingly, a simple 150-word composition on “My routine day” forms the basis of a clip and of the curriculum vitae, and these in their turn evolve into creative tools for an “elevator pitch” (communicating a message in a quick, catchy way). The ability to listen and reading comprehension are related to the subject of English for Internalization; for the last unit of the course, the tools that were previously learned are used by means of a final brief research project.

The content and technology which students use add to their confidence, and teach collaborative skills and the means of communication that students can utilize in their learning and working environments. Judging from feedback during and following the course, the objectives were understood and assessed by most participants. We appreciate the international cooperation, and hope to offer this course to students in Israel and abroad in coming years.

Diversity Course

Another course that was developed and taught at the College is a course which addresses diversity. The course was taught during Semester A of 5778 (2017-2018), and about 150 students from various academic institutions in Israel and Europe participated in it; 12 of them are graduate students at Kaye College.

The course was conducted entirely online. In feedback sent at the end of the course, many students reported their satisfaction with the course, and the awareness it raised in them. Furthermore, most students completed the tasks and fulfilled course requirements successfully.

At a meeting of the course developers which took place in German in April 2018, it was decided to make a number of changes in the course so as to increase interaction between Israeli students and their peers in Europe. The course is intended to be taught at various academic institutions in Israel and in Europe in the coming academic year as well.

As part of the in2it project, excelling students from each college were chosen to represent the course participants at the project’s concluding meeting which will be held in Milano at the end of June 2018. We expect 5 students from these two courses to represent Kaye College at the event.

Co-founded Logo

During the first semester of the 2017-18 academic year, a new online international collaboration between 17 students in a course on “Multiculturalism in Virtual Space” got under way at Kaye Academic College under the guidance of Dr. Liron Ohayon-Shokty, and 30 students from John Abbott College in Canada under the guidance of Dr. Alan Weiss, with assistance from Miss Brenda Lamb, a pedagogical advisor for computer matters. The students are learning in a humanities course entitled “The Struggle of Ideas in Modern Perspective.” As a matter of general knowledge, John Abbott College has 7,000 students. The institution is located in the village of Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue at the western tip of the Island of Montreal, at the junction of the St. Lawrence and Ottawa Rivers.

This international collaboration consisted of three synchronous online meetings (utilizing the GotoMeeting software, which enables a live online conversation) and four non-synchronous meetings (written discussions). The meetings focused on three Israeli films: “Out in the Dark” (2012), “Sand Storm” (2016), and “Live and Become” (2005). The students in the two courses were asked to view the three films and discuss two basic questions each time, from which a live discussion and a discussion accompanied by writing developed in the course forum on the model Canadian website. The Kaye Academic College students were given access to the course website. The two basic questions were:

  1. Does the film simulate or distort reality?
  2. Do the problems that the film raises relate at all to your own personal experiences?

In order to overcome the language barrier, the students in the “Multiculturalism” course, most of whom are not English majors, were asked to prepare and translate their answers to the basic questions ahead of time. In the free discussion stage (oral and written), they were helped by their fellow classmates and the course lecturer.

During the online meetings, which were lively and full of interest, the students presented and discussed various opinions and experiences from their lives that were relevant to the content of the films under discussion, and presented various sociological approaches for analyzing the films. This unique collaboration is expected to continue in the next semester as well, and to include additional topics for discussion.

Online Collaboration with John Abbott College in Canada

In the framework of the course on entrepreneurship and innovation, second- and third-year students in the RGB (Rosh Gadol B’Hora’ah – Excellence Plan of the Can-Do in Teaching) program participated in a computerized self-study course in English. The course contained content on creative thinking, business administration, and economics.

At the end of the course, a hackathon was held (a hackathon is an event in which people gather together in order to work on technological projects on a specific subject. “Hack” means creative design and “thon” comes from “marathon” – a race), which lasted 72 hours. 160 students of economics, engineering, business administration, information management, etc. participated. The hackathon included the development of a task on the subject of “smart cities.” This task required them to find a solution to an urban problem that they had identified. During the hackathon, the students in the program were put together in international groups with students from France and England and with other students from Israel who study at other colleges that are also taking part in the IN2IT project.

Kaye College is part of an Erasmus+ consortium of Israeli and European institutions of higher education, called IN2IT, whose aim is to develop tools and strategies for furthering the internationalization of the institutions.

As part of this global cooperation, Kaye College faculty have been involved in developing two of the four international courses that will be the product of this three-year collaborative effort. These are “English for Internationalization Purposes” (EIP), to further students’ communicative skills in English; and “Embracing Diversity”, including multiculturalism, disability, gender and sexual orientation, and criminal justice. The other two courses are “Essential Skills” and “Global Entrepreneurship”. The Entrepreneurship course, together with EIP and Diversity, will be run as virtual courses next academic year.

During the second semester of this academic year, the EIP and Diversity courses were piloted in the College. The aim of the pilots was to see whether the level of the course and its content were appropriate, and to encourage internationalization through various channels of communication and group work among students from different institutions. Each course presented one module of several planned, to test the technical aspects as well as accessibility, language level, and reading and listening comprehension. Activities in both courses placed emphasis on communication and included filming and uploading one-minute videos of “a day in my life”, with commentary, listening to lectures in English and responding to them, reading and writing descriptive and analytical passages. The pilots provided feedback that will be used for the continuing development of the courses.

Professor Rosalind Horowitz is a member of the academic faculty of the Department of Interdisciplinary Learning and Teaching and of the faculty of the Department of Educational Psychology at University of Texas at San Antonio, in the United States. She visited Be’er Sheva in December and met lecturers, students and the President of the College. During this visit, a creative partnership was forged between Kaye College and UTSA, and lecturers from Kaye’s English Department plan to collaborate with Prof. Horowitz on the subject of literacy with a focus on borders and their ramifications.

As part of their collaboration, led jointly by Dr. Doron Narkis from the English Department and Prof. Rosalind Horowitz from UTSA, teaching students from the Negev and from Southern Texas will research their history and its ramifications on the development of their personal and professional identities, the development of a dual-national identity and the aspiration of teaching English as a second language.

This partnership, anchored by a bilateral agreement signed recently between the two institutions, will be developed over the next few years. It will serve as a means of researching and acquiring information that will accompany and enrich the pedagogy dealing with borders and the training for teachers who will eventually be teaching diverse, developing bilingual populations living in border areas.

Collaboration Agreement with University of Texas at San Antonio
Collaboration Agreement with University of Texas at San Antonio

A collaborative project was started in the second semester of the 2014-2015 academic year, between the English Department at Kaye College (lead by Dr. Liron Ohayon-Shokty and Ms. Regina Benchetrit) and the Theology and Religious Studies Department at York St. John University (lead by Ms. Imelda O’Grady and Mr. Daniel Mackley). The project aimed to provide the learners with global perspectives of their discipline by developing an ‘international learning community’ where students are active participants in the teaching and learning process.

In addition, students at the English department at Kaye were given an opportunity to practice and discuss authentic English language skills, while students at the Theology department at YSJU were able to get acquainted with and discuss authentic and modern Jewish practices as practiced in another part of the world.

The collaborative project used York St John's Universities Learning Management System (LMS) as the platform to support the online activities. The student activities included a series of online asynchronous discussions plus synchronous video-conferences around the topic of Judaism as a living faith’.  Students from both institutions were expected to work both independently as well as in international groups, taking advantage of such technology as Skype, Discussion Forums, Google Drive, YouTube, Video editing software. Student expectations were clearly defined at the beginning of the project and were based upon Forbes (2012) Initial Discussion Guidelines.

The structure of the project was designed to provide students with increasing autonomy with respect to their discussions. This took the form of a structured activity initially, in line with first stage (Access and Motivation) on Salmon’s (2011) 5-stage model.

Following a workshop taught last year at the college on internationalization of the curriculum, facilitated by Dr. Sheila Trahar from Bristol University in England, the idea was raised to launch an internationalization pilot project in the new Master’s program “Education in the Age of Information Technology” in conjunction with and guided by Dr. Trahar.

The general objectives of internationalization of the curriculum are enriching content that has international elements, developing initiatives to collaborate with educational institutions in Israel and worldwide, developing multicultural and international values and exchanging lecturers and students.

During the pilot project, various activities were held, including an online meeting between the students and Dr. Trahar. During the meeting, Dr. Trahar spoke about the changes to her professional identity following a project with students from Hong Kong and South America. She also mentioned the need to develop awareness of the differing styles of accepted teacher-student relationships that exist in each culture. During the discussion, the students talked about the experience of meeting the other members of the multicultural study group and the feeling of friendship within the group.

An additional internationalization activity focused on a collaborative study between Master’s students from three Israeli colleges of education: Kibbutzim College, Al-Qasemi College and Gordon College. Over seven weeks of distance learning, the students learned the topic of distance teaching. The concluding meeting was held face to face at the Google offices in Israel.

A collaborative project is expected to be lauched next academic year between student sat the English Department at Kaye Academic College and the students at UTSA revolving around the topics of Border Discourse and Border Pedagogy. Via online discussions and meetings, students will discuss and explore isuues pertaining to identity borders.

The collaboration will be led by Dr. Rosalind Horowitz of UTSA and Dr. Doron Narkiss of Kaye College.

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