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Graduate Core Resources: Interdisciplinary

Interdisciplinary - Getting Started

Concept mapping can be used for interdisciplinary research to identify the disciplines surrounding a topic and where any overlap occurs. 

For more information on how to make a concept map, see RISD's "Concept Mapping" Handout. To make a concept map, use Cmap, a free software from the Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition.


View of the exhibition Ronan et Erwan Bouroullec, Momentane
by Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec, 2013

Interdisciplinary - Large Scale

Below is the Canadian Program on Genomics and Global Health (CPGGH) diagram of large scale interdisciplinary methodology which combines both the empirical and the theoretical. Some important methodological questions to ask:

  • Which fields are included or excluded in an investigation?
  • How thoroughly did researchers exploit the opportunity for interdisciplinary collaboration? 
    • i.e. were new common vocabulary and methods devised?
  • How important were institutions to helping or hindering this process?
  • How key was the incorporation of interdisciplinary perspectives to creating stronger results?


source: "Interdisciplinary research: putting the methods under the microscope" by David W. Robertson, Douglas K. Martin, and Peter A. Singer.
College for Creative Studies website