Challenges in Designing Curriculum for Trans-Disciplinary Education: On Cases of Designing Concentration on Informing Science and Master Program on Data Science

Dimitar Grozdanov Christozov, Katia Rasheva-Yordanova, Stefka Toleva-Stoimenova
Informing Science: The International Journal of an Emerging Transdiscipline  •  Volume 22  •  2019  •  pp. 019-030
Aim/Purpose: The growing complexity of the business environment and business processes as well as the Big Data phenomenon has an impact on every area of human activity nowadays. This new reality challenges the effectiveness of traditional narrowly oriented professional education. New areas of competences emerged as a synergy of multiple knowledge areas – transdisciplines. Informing Science and Data Science are just the first two such new areas we may identify as transdisciplines. Universities are facing the challenge to educate students for those new realities.

Background: The purpose of the paper is to share the authors’ experience in designing curriculum for training bachelor students in Informing Science as a concentration within an Information Brokerage major, and a master program on Data Science.

Methodology: Designing curriculum for transdisciplines requires diverse expertise obtained by both academia and industries and passed through several stages - identifying objectives, conceptualizing curriculum models, identifying content, and development pedagogical priorities.

Contribution: Sharing our experience acquired in designing transdiscipline programs will contribute to a transition from a narrow professional education towards addressing 21st-century challenges.

Findings: Analytical skills, combined with training in all categories of so-called “soft skills”, are essential in preparing students for a successful career in a transdiciplinary area of activities.

Recommendations for Practitioners: Establishing a working environment encouraging not only sharing but close cooperation is essential nowadays.

Recommendations for Researchers: There are two aspects of training professionals capable of succeeding in a transdisciplinary environment: encouraging mutual respect and developing out-of-box thinking.

Impact on Society: The transition of higher education in a way to meet current challenges.

Future Research The next steps in this research are to collect feedback regarding the professional careers of students graduating in these two programs and to adjust the curriculum accordingly.
informing science, data science, transdiscipline, education
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