Polytechnic University of Valencia Congress, Third International Conference on Higher Education Advances

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Innovative Food Systems Teaching and Learning: overcoming disciplinary and teaching silos to fix the food system
Raquel Ajates Gonzalez

Last modified: 30-05-2017


While inter-university and interdisciplinary research projects are very common in Higher Education (HE), inter-university and interdisciplinary teaching programmes are still very rare. This paper reflects on the first year of the Innovative Food Systems Teaching and Learning (IFSTAL) programme. IFSTAL is a three-year project funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) with the aim of bringing together postgraduate students from very different programmes to learn about food and farming beyond their own disciplines. IFSTAL creates learning environments and activities that encourage students to think systemically about the transdisciplinary challenges facing the food system. IFSTAL combines both face to face events and an inter-university virtual learning environment (VLE) that was created from scratch for this project. At the end of its first year, a survey was carried out to evaluate the programme and inform the structure for year two (Y2). Survey data revealed students preferred interacting at face to face events over the shared VLE. The programme for Y2 was re-designed to incorporate more flipped classroom features with an andragogy-based approach.

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