ENHANCING INTERDISCIPLINARY SKILLS - 2018/9

Module code: LAS2007

Module Overview

The module will develop and consolidate students’ theoretical knowledge and understanding of notions of disciplinarity and interdisciplinarity. It will explore how knowledge forms through disciplinary practices, and the centrality of methods to disciplinary identities. The module encourages students to explore how we know what we know both as disciplinary specific and interdisciplinary practice. At the same time, the increasing debate on the importance of interdisciplinarity will be discussed, addressing specific case studies, in order to explore what interdisciplinary research might enable and what its limits may be. To this extent, interdisciplinarity will be critically engaged with as an historical phenomenon, a valued social and intellectual practice, and an institutional necessity. The meanings of disciplinary and interdisciplinary knowledge will be critically examined with a focus on methods, historical and cultural contexts, and practical applications.

Module provider

School of Literature and Languages

Module Leader

POWRIE PP Prof (Lit & Langs)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

JACs code: L900

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

LAS1004 and LAS1005

Module content

 This module will engage participants in unpacking and reflecting on the following:


The nature, function and use of ‘disciplines’;
Knowledge formation as a disciplinary practice;
The notion and relevance of methods for reflecting on disciplinarity;
What interdisciplinarity may bring to the disciplines;
The meanings and uses of interdisciplinarity;
Ways of thinking about interdisciplinarity through specific case studies.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework CASE STUDY (2500 WORDS) 70
Oral exam or presentation GROUP PRESENTATION 30

Alternative Assessment

Essay (1500 words) to replace group presentation.

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate achievement of the module learning outcomes.

Seminar discussion with ongoing tutor feedback is designed mainly to assess transferable skills in working as part of a group and practical/professional skills in expressing ideas and critical analysis in oral communication. It also assesses subject knowledge in the different forms of interdisciplinary methods used in working across disciplines and cognitive/analytical skills in critical thinking and in using interdisciplinary theory and methods in the reading, presenting and writing of case studies.

The presentation and written work assess subject knowledge in the different forms of methods used in interdisciplinary research and cognitive/analytical skills in critical thinking and in using interdisciplinary theory, methods and content in the reading, presenting and writing of case studies. They also assess practical/professional skills in expressing ideas and critical analysis in written communication and transferable skills in working independently.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:


An interdisciplinary case study of the student’s own design;
A group presentation with supporting documentation, to stimulate and direct class discussion. The presentation will involve discussing an existing case study.


Formative assessment and feedback

Feedback will be given as follows:


Seminars will be student-led, with the module convenor and contributors providing extensive feedback in support of these sessions;
The group presentations will take place during the module and will be given feedback, both to support discussion and to guide the final written piece of work;
The module convenor will provide ongoing verbal and oral feedback.

Module aims

  • Reflect on knowledge formation through disciplinary and interdisciplinary practices;
  • Critically engage with disciplinary methodologies in order to develop understandings of how disciplines work;
  • Debate the need and usefulness of interdisciplinary practices;
  • Practice interdisciplinary thinking in relation to specific case studies.
  • Creating case studies, analysis, and critical thinking;
  • Oral and written communication, including presentation work;
  • Independent work and group work in seminars;
  • Time management through case study planning and submission.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Show familiarity with current debates on the value and complementary of disciplinarity and interdisciplinarity K
002 Synthesise ideas about how knowledge is formed through disciplinary methods and practices K
003 Analyse the meaning and uses of interdisciplinarity K
004 Identify and analyse disciplinary and interdisciplinary methodologies KC
005 Critically understand how different disciplines ‘think’ and ‘function’ as sites of consolidated practices and methods KC
006 Demonstrate an understanding of how to construct and analyse case studies from multiple interdisciplinary perspectives KP
007 Communicate orally in class discussions and in written form T
008 Work both individually and as part of a group T
009 Plan and implement timetables for assessment deadlines P

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 128

Seminar Hours: 22

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to deliver subject knowledge, to develop cognitive/ analytical skills, and to develop in-depth transferable, practical, and professional skills. Specifically, the weekly seminars deliver subject knowledge through provision and discussion of case studies and develop cognitive/analytical skills in analysing case studies and their historical and intellectual disciplinary and interdisciplinary contexts. These weekly seminars involve student-led discussions that develop skills in communication and in working individually and as part of a group. The seminars also provide students with instruction on planning and implementing timetables for work and on presenting ideas coherently under time constraints.

This relates to the programme learning and teaching strategy, which, at FHEQ Level 5, is designed to develop subject knowledge through extended two-hour seminars and to develop transferable, practical, and professional skills, with an emphasis on sophisticated student-led involvement, critical analysis and discussion.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list

Reading list for ENHANCING INTERDISCIPLINARY SKILLS : http://aspire.surrey.ac.uk/modules/las2007

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
English Literature with Film Studies BA (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
English Literature with Sociology BA (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Media Studies with Film Studies BA (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Theatre and Performance with Film Studies BA (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Digital Media Arts with Media Studies BA (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Dance with Theatre and Performance BA (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Liberal Arts and Sciences BA (Hons)/BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Theatre and Performance with Creative Writing BA (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
English Literature with Politics BA (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Media Studies with Theatre and Performance BA (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Politics with Creative Writing BSc (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Politics with French BSc (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Politics with German BSc (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Politics with Spanish BSc (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Sociology with Psychology BSc (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2018/9 academic year.