Edited by John Ishiyama, William J. Miller and Eszter Simon
Chapter 10: Multidisciplinary approaches to teaching political science
In essence, taking a multidisciplinary approach to studying theories and issues in political science involves the inclusion of diverse academic disciplines. While it may seem intuitive that issues of political concern naturally involve a variety of factors, such as economic realities, cultural elements, historical events or sociological dynamics, critically evaluating the issues from these disciplines requires thoughtful analysis and attention to fundamental principles found in the respective disciplines. This chapter will develop a plan for teaching students using theories and methods from multiple disciplines and will include examples of how disciplines can be brought together in the classroom to tackle a single theme. For this we will focus on the elements of a learning community that work well to introduce students to the process of looking at the world through multiple theoretical lenses. Such an approach aims to be comprehensive, coherent and consistent. Students should develop the ability to conceptualize and analyze challenging problems by studying and engaging in a variety of academic work through multiple disciplines.
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