Interdisciplinarity at School – Theoretical and Practical Questions Regarding History, Geography and Civic Education

  • François Audigier

Abstract

It has been a long time that interdisciplinarity is a recommended orientation and practice in various educational systems. It becomes more and more actual with some teaching objects that do not fit simply with the ordinary subjects present at school. These objects are often found in «educations to… » like education to health, to sustainability, to media, to citizenship, etc. To begin with, we examine how ambiguous can be the term of «interdisciplinarity»; we will use the more neutral term «polydisciplinarity». We also remind the reader that this latter needs disciplines to be put into practice. Then we differentiate school subjects according to their objects and their contribution to pupils’ training. That leads us to distinguish on one hand an external polydisciplinarity which studies the links between all social sciences (mainly history, geography and what concerns citizenship) and other disciplines from, on the other hand, an internal polydisciplinarity within the social sciences. To conclude, we introduce the issue of knowing and understanding what a society is about, in particular knowing and understanding our society nowadays. This issue echoes the one about the common culture, about a shared world conception which is sufficient to live together in our political communities.
Published
2006-12-17