IS2222: Course Schedule

Tuesday, September 1

Intro & Expectations

For Thursday (preferred by 5pm; required by 11:59pm):

  • complete your Moodle profile if it is not already completed.  Picture is mandatory.
  • Read “Colleges Must Reconstruct the Unity of Knowledge” by Vartan Gregorian (on Moodle).
  • Post to the Forum: Why are you in IS2222?  What drew you to interdisciplinary work?  What different disciplines interest you?  What are your specific reactions to the Gregorian article?  What do you agree with? disagree with? feel inspired by? What points is he missing?  Using quotes from the article will help add specificity and impact to your response.

Tuesday, September 8

 For Thursday:

  • Read “Ten Cheers for Interdisciplinarity” by Moti Nissani (on Moodle)
  • Post a list of the three quotes you found most interesting from the article and explain why each one captured your attention.  Use the appropriate forum on Moodle.

Tuesday, September 15

  • Interview a professor in a field that you expect might be part of your major.  Focus on their interdisciplinary work/interests, current challenges in the field, and what courses their students should take outside of their main field of study.
  • Write up your interview and post it in the appropriate assignment folder on Moodle.  Be sure to have a good introduction and a conclusion in which you reflect on the importance of interdisciplinarity to your chosen field.

For Thursday:

  • Read Chapter 1 in Repko

Tuesday, September 22

  • Read Chapter 2 in Repko.
  • Answer one Critical Thinking Question from page 45 in the appropriate Moodle forum.
  • Answer one Applications & Exercises Question from pages 45-6 in the appropriate Moodle forum.

For Thursday:

  • Read Chapter 3 in Repko.
  • Answer Applications & Exercises Question #2 on page 61 (post to appropriate Moodle folder).
  • Email a revised version of your interview (as a pdf) to your interview subject.  CC Professor DeRosa on the email.

Tuesday,  September 29

  • Identify an 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 made a difference in how the story turned out.  Post your article as a PDF in the appropriate Assignment folder on Moodle.
  • Prepare a short slide presentation for your classmates to walk them through your chosen story. Try to email me your PPT slides a few hours before class! Email:

For Thursday:

  • Post a paragraph or two about the IS program you would be most likely to pursue here at PSU. Be specific in discussing the disciplines you would include in your contract, and the reason that you are drawn to your chosen program.  Post in the appropriate forum on Moodle.

Tuesday, October 6

  • Comment on your classmates’ postings about their IS program ideas.
  • TEST: Gregorian, Nissani, Chs. 1, 2, 3 in Repko, PSU IS program requirements.

For Thursday:

  • Read Chapter 4 in Repko.
  • Answer one Critical Thinking Question from page 81.  Use the appropriate Moodle forum.
  • Answer one Applications and Exercises question from page 81-2.  Use the appropriate Moodle forum.

Tuesday, October 20

For Thursday:

  • Revise your CPG as needed after your workshop.
  • Fill out an Academic Year Planning Guide. Use DegreeWorks on myPlymouth to access your record if you can’t remember what you have taken so far.

Tuesday, October 20

  • Bring your CPG and AYPG to class.
  • Read Chapter 5 in Repko.
  • Answer one Critical Thinking Question on page 118, and post in the appropriate Moodle forum.
  • Answer one Application and Exercises Question on page 118-9, and post in the appropriate Moodle forum.

For Thursday:

  • Read Chapter 6 in Repko.
  • Answer one Critical Thinking Question on page 136-7, and post in the appropriate Moodle forum.
  • Make an appointment with your IS advisor(s) to discuss your contract courses.  Meeting must be completed by Thursday, October 29.

Tuesday, October 27

  •  TEST on Repko Chs. 4, 5, & 6.

For Thursday:

  • TBD
  • Advisor meetings due by 5pm.

Tuesday, November 3

  • Program Statement due.  Upload to appropriate Assignment folder in Moodle. Please include a jpg of your contract at the end of your statement, or attach a scanned version of your contract in the Assignment folder along with your statement.  ALL UPLOADED DOCUMENTS must be PDFs!
  • Bring a hard copy to workshop in class.  Bring hard copies of your revised contract form and your AYPG as well.

For Thursday:

Tuesday, November 10  NO CLASS

  • Solicit advisor signatures on IS application.  SUBMIT application to ISC, if desired.  To submit, bring complete, printed, and signed forms (remember, essay must be signed by advisors as well) to CHRISTINA SCHAEFER in Undergraduate Studies in Speare.

For Thursday:

  •  Select a scholarly reading on Interdisciplinary Studies.  You may wish to use this article to help you find something suitable:  Print your reading or order it from Interlibrary Loan on the Lamson Library website.  Post the citation for your reading in the appropriate Moodle folder.

Tuesday, November 17 NO CLASS

Tuesday, November 25

  • TBD

Nothing due for Thursday because of Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, December 1

  •  Read your scholarly article and post a summary in the appropriate forum on Moodle.  Your summary should include a basic summary of the main idea of the article plus a breakdown of each key point that the article makes.  Include quotes from the text.  End with a conclusion that explains in what ways the text is useful to your own thinking on interdisciplinarity. Bring a copy of your reading AND a hard copy of your summary to class.

For Thursday:

  • TBD

Tuesday, December 8

  •  Oral Portion of Final Exam: Will cover Chapters 1-6 in Repko, all assigned articles, the PSU IS program requirements, the details of your own IS program, chosen scholarly summary talking points. (Outstanding performance: add two points to written portion; Satisfactory performance: add one point; Below average performance: add 0 points).

For Thursday:

  • Work on Written Portion of Final Exam (due in hard copy form at 5pm on Tuesday at our Exam): Write an essay summarizing your learning in this course.
    • What did you think this course would be like? (1 point)
    • What did you think the definition of “interdisciplinarity” was before taking this course? (1)
    • How did your understanding of IS change over the course of the semester, and how would you define it now? (5)
    • How does your own program rely on the theories and principles of IS? (5)
    • Why does interdisciplinarity matter to universities?  Why does it matter to the world? (5)
    • What are your hopes for your future? (4)
    • What are your hopes for the future of IS, at PSU and beyond? (5)

Final Exam is Tuesday 12/15 from 5-6:15pm (hard copy of written exam due in class by 5pm; no late exams accepted).  One PPT slide detailing your IS major must be submitted to Robin via email ( by 10:30am on this day, 12/15; slide should include title, course details, and a quote summarizing your program goals.

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