Study of Learning Communities and Batei Midrash: Final Report

By Gad Yair, Talia Sagiv, Sari Shimbursky, Sivan Akrai, Maya Lichtman

AVI CHAI Foundation, January 2006

Over the last decade, diverse educational settings have developed with the aim of introducing the Jewish population of Israel to its religious and cultural heritage. During these years, the organizations engaged in this area have come to number in the dozens. This evaluation study examines the influence of 12 organizations on those participating in their activities. The principal goal of this study was to examine the breadth and depth of the long-term influences of participation in these organizations' programs. The study looked at two types of programs run by these organizations: "learning communities" and "batei midrash." Batei midrash are more intensive by their nature; sometimes their programs last for an entire day or two days per week; participation in them represents more of a commitment. By contrast, the learning communities are more autonomous in the selection of material and are based on the active initiative and involvement of the members of the community; sometimes this autonomy works to the detriment of a learning community's stable operation. Some of the organizations run only one of these two types of activities; others run both. Because the study sought to examine the long-term influences of participation, it focused on veteran participants who could testify about achieving the goals from a perspective going back from three to five years.

Topic: Jewish Identification, Education, Jewish Text, Study, Community Building, Jewish Literacy

Funder: Avi Chai Foundation

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Genre: Report

Coverage: Israel

Language: English

Copyright Holder: Publisher

Copyright Information: Download for personal use, freely distribute link

Bibliographic Information:
Yair, Gad. Sagiv, Talia. Shimbursky, Sari. Akrai, Sivan. Lichtman, Maya. Study of Learning Communities and Batei Midrash: Final Report. AVI CHAI Foundation. January 2006:


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