The University of Vermont’s School of Natural Resources (SNR) has linked undergraduate and graduate education through a recent update of a sophomore-level class in SNR’s core curriculum: “Environmental Problem Analysis” (NR105). As a result of a series of collaborative workshops, NR105 now includes explicit links to two other courses: “Ecology, Ecosystems and Environment” (NR103) and “Social Processes and the Environment” (NR104), and students must take these three courses concurrently. NR105, a multidisciplinary, integrative course, is taught collaboratively by two SNR Ph.D. students (an ecologist and a social scientist), and fulfills their graduate teaching requirement. Through direct course development and oversight, regular meetings with faculty members who teach the concurrent courses, and participation as members of the core faculty development group, this model places Ph.D. students into a “faculty apprentice” role. The three- course sequence thus combines integrative, cross-disciplinary education with a multilevel approach to education. At both undergraduate and graduate levels, it also includes an explicit focus on group work and interdisciplinary team collaborations.
Borer, Catherine; Newman, Peter; Ginger, Clare; Shane, John; and Watzin, Mary
"Teaching to learn and learning to teach : a case study of multilevel, interdisciplinary education in natural resources,"
Natural Resources and Environmental Issues:
Vol. 9, Article 51.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.usu.edu/nrei/vol9/iss1/51