IS2225: Course Schedule

This syllabus will change as the semester unfolds. Print at your own peril.


  • Read “The Benefits and Challenges of Interdisciplinarity” and annotate with H.
  • Read “How Do We DO Interdisciplinarity?” and annotate with H.
  • Read “The Challenges of Doing Interdisciplinary Work” and annotate with H.
  • Identify a real-life interdisciplinary success story.  It does not have to be from academia.  Now write a news article for a general readership explaining the story and how interdisciplinarity (integrating knowledge from across disciplines), multi-disciplinarity (using expertise from different disciplines), and/or transdisciplinarity (partnering with stakeholders from outside of academia) made a difference in how the story turned out (example: the cleanup of Livermore Falls in Plymouth required input from environmental scientists, ecologists, business leaders, politicians, and community members). Review the Blog Tips before you finalize your post.  Post your writing on your ePort and log the link into our spreadsheet.
  • In class: we will follow-up to make sure everyone is ready for registration today and those who need to will retake the quiz.

11/13/17 No In-Class Meeting


  • Select a full-text scholarly article on Interdisciplinary Studies, interdisciplinary teaching and learning, or interdisciplinary education.  Start by checking the library databases, and if you need help identifying a SCHOLARLY article, visit the Reference Desk in Lamson.  The article must be at least four pages long and it must be published from 2012-Present.
  • Write an ePort post summarizing your article and explaining why it is helpful to your thinking. Engage with the ideas, quoting passages that you analyze in further detail. Explain how the article’s main points interact with your experience as a beginning interdisciplinarian. Make sure you cite your article properly, and attend to the blog tips as you craft your post. Make sure you add images (your own or cc-licensed) to your post, and log the link on our spreadsheet.


  • ePort post: write a post that focuses on two things you have learned about this semester in two different courses (not in any IS2225 or IS4425). Summarize your learning, and explore why you found these ideas interesting, citing sources such as articles, professors, and textbooks as you go. Add a final reflection about how these ideas connect to each other, fuel your major, and excite you to continue your learning.
    • Here is a possible outline format for the post, which you can feel free to ignore:
      • Introductory paragraph
      • Idea #1 (describe the course it came from, explain the idea, quote–with citations–from a text or text, and discuss what is interesting about it)
      • Idea #2 (describe the course it came from, explain the idea, quote–with citations–from a text or text, and discuss what is interesting about it)
      • How these ideas integrate and how they connect to your major
      • Conclusion about where you hope this learning will take you in the coming semesters or years
    • (Make sure you add links, citations, and images to your post as appropriate.)
    • In class: Textbook Editing, multimedia, web enhancements, post curation, filler materials


  • Curation (to be explained)



  • Take-Home Portion of Final Exam (due to your ePort and our spreadsheet by 4pm today, no wiggle room): Write an essay (not a bullet list of answers to these questions) summarizing your learning in this course. Be sure to cover the following points:
    • What did you think this course would be like?
    • What did you think the definition of “interdisciplinarity” was before taking this course?
    • How did your understanding of IDS change over the course of the semester, and how would you define it now?
    • Go back through the course and documents and readings, and explore how 3 or 4 of the ideas/concepts/terms/issues we covered relate to your own IDS program and plans. You may, if you wish, also discuss the pedagogy of the course (open education, OER, publishing to the web, connected learning, etc.)
    • Why does interdisciplinarity matter to universities?  Why does it matter to the world?
    • What are your hopes for your future?
    • What are your hopes for the future of IDS, at PSU and beyond?
    • Add hyperlinks and images to your post to increase its appeal and impact.
  • IN CLASS: Forced Choices, Twitter Essay, Exam Peer Feedback, Hypothesis & PLN Assessments, Surveys & Evaluations

Final Exam is Wednesday,12/20, from 2:30-5pm: PLN Portfolio Due to EPort by 2:30pm

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