Download Creating Interdisciplinarity: Interdisciplinary Research and by Lisa R. Lattuca PDF

By Lisa R. Lattuca

Interdisciplinarity, a favourite buzzword of college and directors, has been appropriated to explain such a lot of educational objectives that it's nearly meaningless. With a writing variety that's available, fluid, and fascinating, Lisa Lattuca treatments this confusion with an unique conceptualization of interdisciplinarity according to interviews with school who're engaged in its perform.

Whether exploring the connections among it appears comparable disciplines, corresponding to English and women's reviews, or such possible disparate fields as economics and theology, Lattuca strikes clear of earlier definitions in keeping with the levels of integration throughout disciplines and as an alternative makes a speciality of the character of the inquiry at the back of the paintings. She organizes her findings round the methods by which school pursue interdisciplinarity, the contexts (institutional, departmental, and disciplinary) within which college are operating, and the ways that these contexts relate to and impact the interdisciplinary paintings. Her findings lead to necessary feedback for people all for the that means of college paintings, the position and influence of disciplines in academe this present day, and the types of concerns that are supposed to consultant the overview of college scholarship.

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Extra resources for Creating Interdisciplinarity: Interdisciplinary Research and Teaching among College and University Faculty

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Anticipation of the challenge of interdisciplinary communication may prevent faculty from taking the very steps needed to form an interdisciplinary team: “Without . . 12). Kuhn’s (1977) observation that disciplines are characterized by the existence, in varying degrees, of paradigms that specify appropriate problems for study and appropriate methods for studying those problems is well known, but it has not been the subject of much research. † Among the most no*Rossini and his colleagues were not alone in their thinking.

Dressel and Marcus (1982) described a discipline as a systematic way of organizing and studying phenomena. Building on the earlier work of Phenix (1964), Dressel and Marcus conceptualized disciplinary structures as composed of five components: the substantive component (which includes assumptions, variables, concepts, principles and relationships); the linguistic component (the symbolism whereby elements can be identified and relationships defined and explored); the syntactical component (the search for organizing processes around which the discipline develops); the value component (commitments about what is worth studying and how it should be studied); and the conjunctive component (the discipline’s relation to other disciplines).

In these areas knowledge is typically generated in a linear fashion. Becher contrasted this growth by accretion to the predominantly recursive or reiterative pattern of development, which characterizes the soft knowledge domains. Steady growth of knowledge is associated with the predictability of problems that are directly relevant to advances in knowledge: “Scientists in hard pure fields seem able at any given time to identify what questions they should attempt to answer next” (Becher 1989, p.

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