ICoP Cafe – April 29, 2014

Please join us for the ICoP Cafe to enjoy coffee, cookies, and conversation about how the ICoP can support your interdisciplinary teaching and learning. At the meeting, we will introduce our new ICoP co-facilitators: Adriana Sedeno and Conor Douglas. This event is open to anyone in the UBC teaching and learning community. Please feel free to bring your colleagues who may be interested in the ICoP.

Date: April 29, 2014
Time: 3:30pm – 4:30pm
Place: Irving K Barber Learning Centre – Seminar Room 2.22A
Registration: http://events.ctlt.ubc.ca/events/view/3267



ICoP February Meeting Minutes

The ICoP February meeting took place at the Seminar Room at CTLT on February 12, 2014.

1. Welcomed new faces to the iCoP.


2. The call was put out for a new co-facilitator to work with community members to develop and plan iCoP events. There was a creative conversation around ways to facilitate interdisciplinary conversations in this community of practice. (To get involved as a volunteer ICoP co-facilitator, please send a brief statement of interest and qualifications to current ICoP facilitators, Hanae Tsukada (ctlt.prodev@ubc.ca) and Jacqueline Davis (jad310@mail.harvard.edu).


3. Our guest presenter was Jennifer Xenakis from Pathology & Laboratory Medicine who discussed how inviting an outside lecturer can contribute to the value of a course which in this case was on toxicology.

Jennifer spoke from her breadth of experience as an educator. She began by taking the perspective of today’s students who often ask, “Why should I attend classes when I can learn online?” The added value of the classroom, Jennifer pointed out, is interaction with others and learning to work together. An instructor should not only teach material, but has a moral obligation to create an environment conducive to positive change. To facilitate interactive learning, an instructor needs interdisciplinary tools to help a diverse group of students connect with each other, open their minds, and break down the silos of disciplinarity that can impose limitations on bigger thinking. An instructor can model bigger thinking herself by recognizing that there are things she doesn’t know and bringing in an expert as a guest teacher.

For her course on toxicology, students learned about biological and chemical toxins and their uses in terrorist attacks. Jennifer brought in Dr. Richard Price professor of Political Science at UBC specializing in international conflict, peacekeeping, and security. To help students apply their understanding of biological and chemical weapons, Dr. Price will be preparing and delivering a lecture/interactive session with students March 2015. Using skills previously learned in the course, students work collaboratively in small groups to compile a literature review to critically analyze the biological or chemical weapon designated to their group and prepare and present a 20 minute presentation on the topic while their classmates prepare thoughtful questions for the presentations.

Having guest lecturers come and interact with students adds more value to their physically being in the classroom and can help make their education feel more worthwhile.

~ Thank you, Jennifer!

4. Networking time over coffee, tea, and cookies!



RMES 500L: Interdisciplinary Research: Opportunities and Challenges

An interdisciplinary research course will be offered by Dr. Gunilla Öberg at the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainabilitystarting from this February. It will run part-time during the winter term (four 3-hour meetings on Mondays in Feb-March, exact dates TBD) plus four full-day meetings in April-May (exact dates TBD). Please see more course information at: http://ires.ubc.ca/graduate-courses/ (Please scroll down to RMES500L)




February ICoP Meeting

Our first Interdisciplinary Community of Practice meeting for the new term will be on Wednesday, February 12, 2014, 2:30-4:30pm, at the Seminar Room at CTLT. Please come join the meeting to meet new and old community members from across the disciplines. This session will include a brief presentation by Jennifer Xenakis from Pathology & Laboratory Medicine discussing the process involved in adding a new interdisciplinary lecture into a pre-existing toxicology curriculum. Bring your colleagues, your ideas for interdisciplinary activities, and curiosity and enthusiasm for building interdisciplinary into your courses!

Please see the event details and register at: http://events.ctlt.ubc.ca/events/view/3169

We are still looking for new ICoP facilitators. This role will offer you great opportunities for leadership, facilitation, networking, and more. Please check out the Cofacilitator role description, ICoP for details. We will talk about this opportunity at the February meeting. You can ask any questions about the role at the meeting, or please feel free to contact us with interest or questions if you cannot make it to the meeting. Our contact is in the document.

Looking forward to seeing many of you at the meeting!


Interdisciplinary Events & Conferences

Hello ICoP members,

Before you take off for holidays, please check out the following interdisciplinary events and share with your colleagues, peers, and students who may be interested.

UBC Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Network (iGSN) End-of-Term Party

Date/Time: December 6, 2013, 7pm-

Place: Graduate Student Centre, UBC

Call for Papers: Asian Studies Graduate Student Conference at University of Hawaii at Manoa

Pushing Boundaries, Shifting Perspectives: Remapping Asia and the Pacific Through a Transnational Interdisciplinary Lens

Deadline: January 8, 2014

Call for Abstracts: UBC/UW graduate student conference on Asian studies

Changing Vistas: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on the Asia Pacific

Deadline: January 15, 2014

FIREtalk: Creativity and Innovation

Date/Time: January 29, 2014, 4-6pm

Place: UBC (Room to be announced)





ICoP November Meeting Follow-Up & Announcements

ICoP November Meeting – Thank-You’s

Guest speakers and ICoP co-facilitators (from left): Jacqueline Davis, Hillel Goelman, Kevin Mehr, Hanae Tsukada

Our ICoP November meeting was another success with inspiring speakers, new and familiar participants, and great discussions! We would like to reiterate our appreciation for the guest speakers, Dr. Hillel Goelman and Kevin Mehr representing the Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate Program (ISGP) and the Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Network (iGSN) respectively, as well as for those who came to the meeting. We highly recommend those of you who couldn’t make it to the meeting to check out these vibrant and resourceful interdisciplinary groups, if you don’t know them yet.

ICoP Co-Facilitator Position Open

Because of the lively discussions at the meeting, we ran out of time to make an announcement about an ICoP co-facilitator position. Because Hanae’s role as an ICoP facilitator has been interim, we are looking for an interdisciplinary enthusiast to work with the other co-facilitator, Jackie. This role will offer you great opportunities for leadership, facilitation, networking, and more. Please check out the Cofacilitator role description for details and contact us with interest or questions. Our contact is in the document.

Out of the Box: Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate Conference – Call for Abstracts

Please note that the proposal submission deadline for the Out of the Box conference is approaching on November 30th. The conference will be on March 21, 2014 at the Liu Institute for Global Issues, UBC.

ICoP February 2014 Meeting

Please mark your calender for our next ICoP meeting on Wednesday, February 12th, 2014, 2:30-4:30pm. Please watch out for more details to come. In the meantime, please contact us with a suggestion or idea for our future meeting in February or after, and we wish you the best with the rest of the term and happy holidays!

Jackie Davis & Hanae Tsukada, ICoP Co-Facilitators


ICoP November Meeting

Date: Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Time: 2:30-4:30pm
Place: Fraser River Room, Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology, Irving K. Barber Learning Centre

Registration: http://events.ctlt.ubc.ca/events/view/3029

We are pleased to announce our second meeting of the term! At this meeting we will have two distinguished guests present on interdisciplinarity at UBC:

  • Kevin Mehr, a 4th-year PhD student in Genome Science & Technology, is the president of the Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Network (iGSN), the vibrant student-governed organization that formed upon the closure of the College for Interdisciplinary Studies http://igsnubc.wordpress.com/.
  • Dr. Hillel Goelman is the director of the dynamic Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate Program (ISGP) in the Faculty of Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies that has enabled students to design their own degrees and conduct interdisciplinary research at UBC for 40 years http://isgp.ubc.ca/

You are warmly invited to join us for coffee, cookies, and conversation as we expand our understanding of the Interdisciplinary happening right here on campus.



Interdisciplinary Opportunities at UBC


FIREtalks are a series of interdisciplinary research exchanges run by graduate students for graduate students. A programme of the Research Commons, FIREtalks provide an opportunity for graduate students to share and discuss their research or ideas in an interdisciplinary forum. They are a great opportunity for graduate students in the UBC academic community to collaborate, network and explore ideas without conventional disciplinary boundaries.

The next FIREtalk is on October 23rd, 2013 (4-6 PM): Indigenizing the Academy

How can the academy engage Aboriginal and Indigenous knowledge? What are some ways researchers at UBC – Indigenous and non-Indigenous – are using Indigenous methodologies and incorporating Indigenous knowledge? What challenges arise and how can we address them?

For more information, please visit: http://koerner.library.ubc.ca/services/research-commons/fire-talks/?login

UBC Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Network (iGSN)

The iGSN is a group of enthusiastic graduate students dedicated to improving the graduate student experience at UBC.  The group’s mission is “to facilitate interdisciplinary collaboration and knowledge-sharing between graduate students from different disciplines. Only through an exchange of ideas can we push the boundaries of research, obtaining new and exciting results.  By providing social, recreational, and professional development opportunities that are discipline-independent and highly inclusive, we hope to accomplish this task here at UBC.”

For more information and to join the group, please visit: http://igsnubc.wordpress.com/

 Stephen M. Straker Memorial Lecture, Barbara Herrnstein Smith, “Dis/Integration: On the New Interdisciplinarity”

  • Date: Monday, October 21, 2013
  • Time: 4:00-5:30pm
  • Place: Buchanan Building, Block A, Room 104, 1866 Main Mall

Professor Smith (Duke University) is a leading literary theorist and critic, and also a major contributor to Science and Technology Studies, bringing together insights from literary and critical theory with those from history and philosophy of science. Among her honours are visiting appointments at the Princeton Institute for Advanced Study, the Stanford Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, the US National Humanities Center, and the Rockefeller Foundation Center at Bellagio. She is also the recipient of a lifetime achievement award from the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts.

For more information, please visit: http://www.history.ubc.ca/events/stephen-m-straker-memorial-lecture-barbara-herrnstein-smith-%E2%80%9Cdisintegration-new


Upcoming Interdisciplinary Conferences

Out of the Box: Celebrating Interdisciplinarity Conference
Conference: Friday, March 21st, 2014 at UBC
Call for abstract deadline (EXTENDED): November 30, 2013
Also visit the Facebook page.

International Conference on Interdisciplinary Social Sciences
Conference: June 11th-13th, 2014 at UBC
Current call for proposal deadline: December 10th, 2013 (Abstracts are accepted in
monthly rounds. Return here for subsequent review deadlines.
Proposals received at each deadline will be reviewed between two to four weeks
of the corresponding deadline.)


ICoP October Meeting

Date: Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013
Time: 2:30-4:30pm
Place: Fraser River Room in the Centre for Teaching and Technology at the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre

Registration:  http://events.ctlt.ubc.ca/events/view/2865

Please come join our first Interdisciplinary Community of Practice (ICoP) meeting for the new academic year to meet new and old community members from across the disciplines and to plan the Community’s activities for the year. The session will include a brief presentation by Pam Kalas from the Department of Zoology sharing lessons learned from integrating the Truth and Reconciliation event on September 18 into her biology course (BIOL121) (Click here for a brief story on this initiative). Bring your colleagues, your ideas for interdisciplinary activities, and curiosity and enthusiasm for building interdisciplinarity into your courses!