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The Challenges of Interdisciplinary Learning: ‘Reality Bites’

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This article draws on data from the case study of a Middle Years teaching team’s experience of engaging with interdisciplinary learning. While the benefits of working across the disciplinary divides have long been acknowledged, attempts to enact interdisciplinary approaches to learning have a long and somewhat troubled history. Video-taping of the planning processes, classroom lessons and focus group interviews provided nuanced insights into how teachers’ theorising of interdisciplinary learning connected with their classroom practice. Data illuminated students’ capability to integrate knowledge and modes of thinking across disciplines, but also revealed the intellectual and pragmatic challenges of engaging students with the disciplinary perspectives.

Keywords: Middle Years; dialogic pedagogy; interdisciplinary learning; planning processes

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2011

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  • Learning and Teaching is a bi-annual, refereed, international journal providing a forum for discussion and analysis of the latest educational research on innovative approaches to classroom pedagogy and learning in the global culture. Articles are chosen for their originality, readability, and accessibility to wide audience of educational researchers, classroom-teachers, educational administrators and curriculum coordinators.

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