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

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An Interdisciplinary 4th Level Education Model:Connected Health
Nicola Mountford, Gemma Watts, Luis Fernandez Luque, Ioanna Chouvarda, Threase Kessie, Tara Cusack

Last modified: 08-06-2017


This paper responds to the need for interdisciplinary approaches to fourth level education that better reflect the complexity of the world in which we work and conduct research. We discuss this need in technology-enabled healthcare, Connected Health. We propose a model for fourth level interdisciplinary education and discuss its trial application in two European structured PhD programmes in the Connected Health research arena. We suggest broader learning objectives for the emerging fourth level graduate, methods for incorporating multiple disciplinary inputs and perspectives into deep disciplinary PhD training, intersectoral approaches to ensure employability and impact, and innovative training methods and structures to facilitate interdisciplinary and intersectoral learning. We give some examples of innovative training modules used within the pilot programmes. Finally we discuss six core elements of a truly interdisciplinary programme at fourth level - exposure to different environments, joint supervision, a genuine role for the non academic sector, career development training and planning, the development of a sustainable network beyond the life of the programme, and data openess.

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