Supporting Interdisciplinary Teaching about the Earth for a Sustainable Future through the InTeGrate Project

Wednesday 4:30pm-5:45pm Beren Auditorium
Poster Session Part of Wednesday Poster Session

Session Chairs

Monica Bruckner, Carleton College
Cathy Manduca, Carleton College
John McDaris, Carleton College
Cailin Huyck Orr, Carleton College
InTeGrate supports teaching about Earth in the context of sustainability across the curriculum through curricula development and strengthening programs to increase undergraduate students' Earth literacy and prepare them for the workforce. To this end, the community-based project, supported by SERC staff and web tools, has involved more than 100 people and produced 32 rigorously-reviewed, classroom-tested courses and modules and 16 model program descriptions.

Curricular materials combine learning about Earth and societal issues to explore topics including natural hazards, food security, climate change, environmental justice, and Earth resources, among others. Providing two-weeks to a semester's worth of material, they share a common format that facilitates using a single lesson or mixing and matching materials. Designed for adaptability in different settings, materials were created and classroom tested by 32 interdisciplinary teams (113 unique authors) from around the country and across institution types. All materials highlight InTeGrate's Guiding Principles: addressing grand challenges involving the Earth and society, developing students' ability to address interdisciplinary issues, incorporating systems thinking, developing students' understanding of the nature and methods of science, and using authentic data and credible science.

To demonstrate larger-scale adoption of InTeGrate materials and Guiding Principles, 16 model 'implementation programs' focused on program-level goals like recruiting and supporting underrepresented groups in the geosciences throughout their academic career; bolstering teaching about the Earth at institutions with limited/no geoscience faculty; strengthening interdisciplinary teaching about Earth to better prepare students for complex problems they will encounter in the workforce and beyond; and improving approaches to increase earth literacy in teacher preparation programs. The collection provides examples for how departments can meet goals at scales bigger than a course, including challenges faced and how they were overcome, and shares project-developed materials.

A set of workshops, webinars, and community-contributed reflections highlight how these materials have been used and adapted.