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The interdisciplinary edge: Transforming academic practice and enhancing student learning via interdisciplinary curricula


Coady, C and Matthews, KE and Davison, A and Pharo, E and Warr, K, The interdisciplinary edge: Transforming academic practice and enhancing student learning via interdisciplinary curricula, Research and Development in Higher Education: Higher Education on the Edge, 4-7 July 2011, Gold Coast, Australia EJ (2011) [Conference Extract]

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As we enter the 21st century, the ways that we live, learn, work and interact with people and the environment are changing. Institutions of higher education are questioning how they can transform curricula to prepare graduates for the increasing complexity of the challenges facing humanity. Can degree programs remain static and rooted in single discipline-taught subjects disconnected from real world applications, which inherently span traditional disciplinary boundaries? Students stand to benefit a great deal from learning strategies that are derived from demanding and rigorous curricula based on relevant, real-world problems, which require high levels of self-aware inquiry and problem solving skills. Discussing practical ways to enable academics to collaborate around authentic problems in the face of university structures that make collaboration difficult is an important part of responding to the complex challenges our graduates will face. This special-interest roundtable will centre on the issues associated with achieving interdisciplinary collaboration to facilitate educational change, with discussions of how the Australian tertiary sector should respond to the ongoing single-disciplinary focus that dominates much thinking about higher education. The conveners work across a range of disciplines and institutions and will focus on findings from two ALTC-funded projects that aim to create genuine interdisciplinary curricula to engage and motivate students to enhance learning outcomes.

Item Details

Item Type:Conference Extract
Keywords:academic practice, interdisciplinary collaboration, educational change, curricula
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Curriculum and pedagogy
Research Field:Curriculum and pedagogy theory and development
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Teaching and curriculum
Objective Field:Pedagogy
UTAS Author:Davison, A (Associate Professor Aidan Davison)
UTAS Author:Pharo, E (Dr Emma Little)
UTAS Author:Warr, K (Ms Kristin Warr)
ID Code:78430
Year Published:2011
Deposited By:Geography and Environmental Studies
Deposited On:2012-06-28
Last Modified:2012-06-28

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