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Interdisciplinary Research
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Interdisciplinary Research
Process and Theory

Fourth Edition
Additional resources:


January 2020 | 472 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Interdisciplinary Research: Process and Theory offers a comprehensive, systematic presentation of the interdisciplinary decision-making process by drawing on student and professional work from the natural sciences, social sciences, humanities, and applied fields.

Designed for active learning and problem-based approaches, the Fourth Edition includes expanded discussion of epistemology, creativity within the interdisciplinary research process, confirmation bias and social media, the philosophy of integration, and student work patterns, mapping, and the importance of performing independent research while working through this book. 
 
 
Part I About Interdisciplinary Studies and Disciplines
 
1. Introducing Interdisciplinary Studies
Chapter 1 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 1 Objectives

 
Defining Interdisciplinary Studies

 
The Intellectual Essence of Interdisciplinarity

 
Distinguishing Interdisciplinarity From Multidisciplinarity, Transdisciplinarity, and Integrative Studies

 
Chapter Summary

 
Notes

 
Exercises

 
 
2. Introducing the Disciplines and Their Perspectives
Chapter 2 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 2 Objectives

 
Defining Disciplinary Perspective

 
How Knowledge Is Typically Reflected in the Organization of the Academy

 
Categories of Disciplines

 
Disciplinary Perspectives

 
Unpacking the Defining Elements of a Discipline’s Perspective

 
Chapter Summary

 
Notes

 
Exercises

 
 
Part II Drawing on Disciplinary Insights
 
3. Beginning the Research Process
Chapter 3 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 3 Objectives

 
The Integrated Model of the Interdisciplinary Research Process

 
Key Characteristics of Interdisciplinary Research

 
STEP 1: Define the Problem or State the Research Question

 
STEP 2: Justify Using an Interdisciplinary Approach

 
Chapter Summary

 
Notes

 
Exercises

 
 
4. Identifying Relevant Disciplines
Chapter 4 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 4 Objectives

 
Select Potentially Relevant Disciplines

 
Map the Problem to Reveal Its Disciplinary Parts

 
Reduce the Number of Potentially Relevant Disciplines to Those That Are Most Relevant

 
Chapter Summary

 
Notes

 
Exercises

 
 
5. Conducting the Literature Search
Chapter 5 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 5 Objectives

 
Meaning of Literature Search

 
Reasons for Conducting the Literature Search

 
Special Challenges Confronting Interdisciplinarians

 
The Initial Literature Search

 
The Full-Scale Literature Search

 
Chapter Summary

 
Notes

 
Exercises

 
 
6. Developing Adequacy in Relevant Disciplines
Chapter 6 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 6 Objectives

 
The Meaning of Adequacy

 
Develop Adequacy in Theories

 
Develop Adequacy in Disciplinary Methods

 
Use and Evaluate Disciplinary Methods in Basic Research

 
Provide In-Text Evidence of Disciplinary Adequacy

 
Chapter Summary

 
Notes

 
Exercises

 
 
7. Analyzing the Problem and Evaluating Insights
Chapter 7 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 7 Objectives

 
Analyze the Problem From Each Discipline’s Perspective

 
Evaluate the Insights Produced by Each Discipline

 
Checklist for Evaluating Previous Research

 
Chapter Summary

 
Note

 
Exercises

 
 
Part III Integrating Insights
 
8. Understanding Integration
Chapter 8 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 8 Objectives

 
What Interdisciplinary Integration Is

 
The Controversy Concerning Integration

 
Integration in the Broad Model

 
Questions Raised by This Discussion of Integration

 
Chapter Summary

 
Notes

 
Exercises

 
 
9. Identifying Conflicts Among Insights and Their Sources
Chapter 9 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 9 Objectives

 
Identify Conflicting Insights

 
Locate Sources of Conflict Among Insights

 
Communicate Your Research to the Appropriate Audience

 
Chapter Summary

 
Exercises

 
 
10. Creating Common Ground Among Insights: Concepts and/or Assumptions
Chapter 10 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 10 Objectives

 
About Interdisciplinary Common Ground

 
Create Common Ground Among Conflicting Concepts and/or Assumptions

 
Chapter Summary

 
Notes

 
Exercises

 
 
11. Creating Common Ground Among Insights: Theories
Chapter 11 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 11 Objectives

 
Defining Disciplinary Theory

 
Models, Variables, Concepts, and Causal Relationships

 
Create Common Ground Among Theories

 
When Theories Differ Only Minimally

 
Chapter Summary

 
Notes

 
Exercises

 
 
12. Constructing a More Comprehensive Understanding or Theory
Chapter 12 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 12 Objectives

 
Definition of “More Comprehensive Understanding”

 
Construct the More Comprehensive Understanding From Modified Concepts and/or Assumptions

 
Construct a More Comprehensive Theory From a Modified Theory

 
Chapter Summary

 
Notes

 
Exercises

 
 
13. Reflecting on, Testing, and Communicating the Understanding or Theory
Chapter 13 Learning Outcomes

 
Chapter 13 Objectives

 
Reflect on the More Comprehensive Understanding or Theory

 
Test the Quality of Interdisciplinary Work

 
Test the More Comprehensive Understanding

 
Communicate the Results of Integration

 
Chapter Summary

 
Note

 
Exercises

 

Supplements

Instructor Resource Site
Password-protected Instructor Resources include editable, chapter-specific Microsoft® PowerPoint® slides to offer you complete flexibility in easily creating a multimedia presentation for your course and highlight essential content and features. Tables and figures pulled directly from the book are available for you to add to course materials at your convenience.  

“In this Fourth Edition, Repko and Szostak have gone further to de-mystify the interdisciplinary research process. By providing students with guiding study questions within each chapter, adding extended advice on how to choose a complex research question, and illustrating that many of the strategies outlined in this text can be applied beyond the academy, they are more responsive to the needs of both professors and students.”

Charles R. Hamilton
Texas A&M University, Central Texas

“Repko and Szostak’s text remains a vital guide to interdisciplinary inquiry, with clear accounts of an ideal progression from initial idea through completed project. While oriented to all levels from undergraduates to professional scholars, the book ably serves as a text for doctoral students; it has helped them achieve profound contributions. The current edition expands on instruction regarding literature searches and research questions, while encouraging students to rely on their own creativity as novel approaches are conceived and interpretations of findings sought.”

Carol Barrett
Union Institute & University and Saybrook University

"The Fourth Edition of Interdisciplinary Research offers improved clarity and usability, particularly for undergraduate researchers. Guiding questions at the beginning of each chapter encourage readers to remain focused, and newly incorporated examples of relevant, recent research demonstrate that interdisciplinary perspectives have the power to help us understand and shape the world around us—including people, policies, and even public spaces—for the better.”

Anissa J. Sorokin
Stevenson University

“The revised edition of Interdisciplinary Research is timely and well received! Literature on interdisciplinary research has increased and developed to include a synthesis theory and practice from around the world. This book is recommended for undergraduate and graduate students and those involved in interdisciplinary research. Instructors using this as a primary or supplemental text will find the pedagogical revisions helpful in challenging students to engage with the interdisciplinary research process. I highly recommend it.”

Marcus Tanner
Texas Tech University

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