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ERIC Number: EJ1008260
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Jun
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 34
ISSN: ISSN-1931-7913
A Framework for Analyzing Interdisciplinary Tasks: Implications for Student Learning and Curricular Design
Gouvea, Julia Svoboda; Sawtelle, Vashti; Geller, Benjamin D.; Turpen, Chandra
CBE - Life Sciences Education, v12 n2 p187-205 Jun 2013
The national conversation around undergraduate science instruction is calling for increased interdisciplinarity. As these calls increase, there is a need to consider the learning objectives of interdisciplinary science courses and how to design curricula to support those objectives. We present a framework that can help support interdisciplinary design research. We developed this framework in an introductory physics for life sciences majors (IPLS) course for which we designed a series of interdisciplinary tasks that bridge physics and biology. We illustrate how this framework can be used to describe the variation in the nature and degree of interdisciplinary interaction in tasks, to aid in redesigning tasks to better align with interdisciplinary learning objectives, and finally, to articulate design conjectures that posit how different characteristics of these tasks might support or impede interdisciplinary learning objectives. This framework will be useful for both curriculum designers and education researchers seeking to understand, in more concrete terms, what interdisciplinary learning means and how integrated science curricula can be designed to support interdisciplinary learning objectives. (Contains 7 figures.)
American Society for Cell Biology. 8120 Woodmont Avenue Suite 750, Bethesda, MD 20814-2762. Tel: 301-347-9300; Fax: 301-347-9310; e-mail:; Website:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A