There is no one standard way to go about choosing students to participate in the Lessons from Auschwitz Project. Circumstances in some schools and colleges can create a very high demand for places, whilst in others coordinating teachers may find that they need to "recruit" participants.
The Holocaust Educational Trust recommends that students be considered regardless of what subjects they may be studying. The Lessons from Auschwitz Project is not strictly a History course. It is however mandatory that the students chosen to participate are between the ages of 16-18 years old and studying at A-Level or equivalent.
Primarily, when making your choice it is essential that your students are able to work together as a team -- both in advance of the visit, on the day, and after their return. Students should be emotionally mature enough to feel comfortable interacting with students from other schools, and able to travel most likely without teacher supervision.
It is also important to stress to all interested students that the Lessons from Auschwitz Project is a four-part course, and that completion of all parts is compulsory. By participating on the course they make a commitment to work together to communicate the lessons of the Holocaust in their schools and/or communities on their return. So students' capacity to complete this requirement in a meaningful way should be a criterion that you factor into your decision.
With this in mind, you might consider:
- Asking them to give a short presentation on the importance of remembering the Holocaust (either individually or as a pair).
- Writing an essay. The title could be something such as, 'Why is it important for everyone to remember the Holocaust?'
- Interviewing students to informally discuss the above topics.
In instances where students are asked by their teacher to participate, not having expressed an interest on their own, it is also important that it be explained to them why they have been asked to take part, and what the expectations are. It can be very counterproductive if students feel as though they have been "made" to take part against their will.