Researching and developing interdisciplinary teaching: Towards a conceptual framework for classroom communication

Charlotte Woods

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Calls for teaching and learning that cross subject boundaries have been making themselves heard in recent Higher Education literature in different national contexts. Communication is pivotal in any such learning encounter: it is in the process of negotiating meaning across disciplines that its rewards and challenges lie. And yet, the question of what characterises interdisciplinary classroom communication in the sector is little researched and little understood. How such interaction differs from that in the monodisciplinary university classroom is under-theorised. Adapting Applied Linguistic theory in Intercultural Communicative Competence (Byram, M. (1997). Teaching and assessing intercultural communicative competence. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.) and drawing on a taxonomy of academic disciplines (Becher, T., & Trowler, P. R (2001). Academic tribes and territories.Buckingham: Society for Research in Higher Education/Open University Press.), the article proposes a model of Communicative Competence as a conceptual tool to shape thinking in developing and researching interdisciplinary teaching and learning in the university classroom. © 2006 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)853-866
    Number of pages13
    JournalHigher Education
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2007


    • Applied linguistics
    • Classroom communication
    • Intercultural communicative competence
    • Interdisciplinary
    • Teaching and learning


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