June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
Liberal Education/Engineering & Society
23.597.1 - 23.597.27
Cross-disciplinary collaboration: A transformative learning opportunity for facultyAs the world’s most pressing problems become more complex and interconnected, there is anincreasingly urgent need to equip students with holistic and integrative thinking skills. In the context ofengineering education, curricular initiatives designed to address this need draw on a broad base ofliterature spanning creativity and innovation, systems thinking, and sustainability. Motivated facultyengage in problem-based and service learning projects, where, in contrast to traditional engineeringscience courses, they embrace the absence of single solutions and encourage their students to feel at easein the messy, open-endedness of ‘real-world’ problems. Set against these broad trends, this paperdescribes a transdisciplinary, split-level, studio course that was implemented in fall 2012. Co- taught byan art education graduate student and an environmental engineering instructor, this class consisted ofeleven students from art education (4), environmental (4) and civil (1) engineering, and landscapearchitecture (2). Undertaken as part of a larger research project focusing on synergistic learning, that is,how ideas come together in students heads, this paper uses autoethnographic techniques to describe andanalyze ways in which cross-disciplinary collaborative teaching can be a transformative learningopportunity not only for students, but for faculty too. To this end, the paper presents selectedautobiographic accounts of “epiphanies” that we, the two instructors, experienced in the process ofplanning and facilitating the studio. These experiences are then analyzed with respect to how they stemfrom, or are made possible by being part of, a particular disciplinary culture. Through this ethnographicanalysis, we consider ways others may experience similar epiphanies and how our experiences illustratebroader patterns and outcomes of cross disciplinary collaborations.
Sochacka, N., & Guyotte, K. W., & Walther, J., & Kellam, N. N. (2013, June), Faculty Reflections on a STEAM-Inspired Interdisciplinary Studio Course Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. https://peer.asee.org/19611
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