Impact — Winter 2021

Editorial Statement

Dear Readers,

This is my first issue as editor of Impact, but this is the second issue of Impact that came to fruition in the midst of Covid–19. As we have all struggled to meet our (sometimes new) professional and intellectual obligations as the pandemic has raged on, it is heartening to publish work by scholars and writers who have still found ways to reflect on and explore interdisciplinary work despite doing so in the midst of the ongoing global pandemic.

In this issue, a central question explored is, what kinds of programs and approaches can enhance interdisciplinary teaching and student learning? The essays in this issue explore this question in distinct and insightful ways.

Grounded in her own experiences developing and running a Latin American and Caribbean Studies minor, one contributor argues that the minor enhances students’ interdisciplinary learning by exposing students to ethnic and racial difference, enriches student understanding of the depth and breadth of geo-cultural diversity, and prepares students to engage and work in multicultural settings. Writing together, two health educators highlight how various applications of service-learning pedagogy, such as traditional vs. online classroom approaches to service learning, application of service-learning strategies in the context of health education and health promotion, via internship courses and funded service projects, and the role of servicelearning in enhancing core areas of responsibilities for certified health education specialists (CHES), can be a powerful interdisciplinary teaching and learning tool in health education. Finally, two faculty from the University of Tennessee interested in the Biglan/Becher taxonomy of disciplines, collaboratively show how the Biglan/Becher taxonomy of disciplines can be used to analyze disciplinary interrelationships in STEAM (STEM + Arts), with the ultimate goal of categorizing ways STEAM approaches can facilitate student learning in higher education.

Our Impact book reviewers inform readers about new interdisciplinary and ground-breaking work in the under -researched area of parental incarceration, one author’s suggestions for how to teach undergraduates and still feel good about it, notes from a white professor in terms of teaching about race and racism in the college classroom, and, finally, another author’s arguments about how democracy can handle climate change.

We hope you enjoy the various insights shared within this issue, and we continue to wish all our readers and writers good health and fortitude as 2021 continues to unfold.

All the best,

Lynn O’Brien Hallstein, Editor-In-Chief, Director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Teaching & Learning