|Published online: June 25, 2014||$US5.00|
Although interdisciplinary education is both necessary and inevitable, many current interdisciplinary efforts in higher education are underdeveloped. Equally important, most colleges and universities still deliver education as "products," following 19th and 20th century models. This paper describes a new approach that uses design methodologies to develop and deliver process-oriented, systemic curriculum. It proposes a new set of principles that is both dynamic and fully interdisciplinary, based on a 21st-century perspective that has wide-ranging support. Most institutions are within reach of utilizing this model, as they already offer interdisciplinary curriculum in some form, ranging from single projects to entire programs. True interdisciplinary education must fully integrate theoretical thinking and practical application, generalist’s and specialist’s contributions, as well as left- and right-brain perspectives. It does not treat STEM and liberal arts components as a dichotomy, as is often the case. This new model’s real-world, laboratory collaborations depend upon all appropriate disciplines and modes of thinking for success. Its dynamic and modular process for curriculum development harnesses systems design theory and information technologies to create a unique infrastructure and knowledge-based framework—wholly integrated, decentralized, and extremely flexible—capable of rapidly adapting to global and technological change.
|Keywords:||Curriculum, Interdisciplinary, Design|
Associate Professor, Department of Communication Design, New York City College of Technology, CUNY, Trenton, NJ, USA