Interdisciplinary Team: Everything You Need to Know

This is a team of qualified teachers who are collectively responsible for a large group of students, usually 80-100. Typically, this educational strategy involves teachers from multiple disciplines working together on classroom instruction, curriculum design, and student evaluation. In interdisciplinary team-teaching, the group of teachers can be assigned to work together for a year or more. This is a common and practiced approach at all levels of the school curriculum.

Some common goals that teachers try to attain are engaging their students and helping them to develop insights, knowledge, problem-solving skills, self-efficacy, self-confidence, and a passion for learning. Thanks to their diversity and exploration of things from different aspects, an interdisciplinary team can promote the realization of these teaching objectives.

An interdisciplinary team encourages and facilitates the collaboration of resources and ideas. For instance, general education teachers can plan and provide the course for all their students, while special educators work on meeting the learning goals of students with special needs. When members of such a team interact and work together with their colleagues, they often feel a sense of collegiality and zeal that they wouldn’t have achieved if they were working in isolation. However, to develop an effective unit, all members of an interdisciplinary team should value each other’s opinions and work collectively for the common goal. Typically, all members meet and pool resources as well as expertise to chart a learning plan, which is then implemented based on what everybody agrees upon. 

Interdisciplinary team-teaching brings several benefits for students as well. For instance, by introducing students to subject matters from different perspectives, this model of education can help them recognize bias and challenge their preconceived notions. Once students put aside their preconceived notions, they are able to learn facts more readily and are more welcoming to adopting diverse methodologies that encourage understanding.

An interdisciplinary team can also help students develop an admiration for the differences between disciplines and ways to handle a problem while considering its discipline-specific rules regarding feasible evidence. This way, they can get a broader knowledge of the problem under investigation.

Teaching via interdisciplinary teams can let students learn ways to embrace or tolerate ambiguity. They understand how ambiguity can be triggered by alternative perspectives on issues that are advanced by diverse disciplines. They also learn why it should be welcome instead of considering it a shortcoming of a specific discipline.

By encouraging the amalgamation of ideas from relevant disciplines, interdisciplinary teams can also help students value ethical dimensions to most matters of concern.

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