Interdisciplinary Impact (FASS3999)

Enrolments are now open for Semester 2, 2018

[Interdisciplinarity] has been a skill that has been amazing to learn because now I understand how to work with people who might have different mindsets and might approach problems completely differently to me. I’ve already found it useful talking about it in job interviews. The process of learning how to work with people who have different cognitions has been something that employers have really liked hearing about.
- Jessica, FASS3999 student

02:55 minutes

Prepare for the world of work with Interdisciplinary Impact.
Take part in this opportunity to develop practical work-ready skills in this new 6-credit point unit of study, launching in 2018.

Working alongside students from other disciplines, you will learn how to apply and communicate your disciplinary knowledge, skills and perspectives in innovative projects that tackle real-world problems in the Westmead Precinct*.

*Note: you will not be required to be based at Westmead for this unit but will undertake periodic visits.

What is interdisciplinarity and why is it important?
Interdisciplinarity is an approach that integrates knowledge from different fields of study to foster understanding of, and generate solutions to, complex intellectual and practical problems. This unit will challenge you to reconsider knowledge and how it is applied.

The reality of complex twenty first-century workplaces transcends disciplinary expertise. More pressingly, disciplinary knowledge increasingly needs to be supplemented with insights and methods from other disciplines in order to solve intractable problems facing society and humanity.

About FASS3999 Interdisciplinary Impact
In 2018, the complex problems of the Westmead precinct will be the focus for interdisciplinary problem-based learning.

The overall driving question will be: "How can we use research to enhance the Westmead precinct? Specifically, how can we make the Westmead precinct more than a ‘hospital suburb’?" How can we increase business, government and community engagement in the precinct? What partnerships need to be created to respond to the changing demographic of the area?

You will explore case studies which examine issues relating to service delivery, accessibility and client experience. Incorporating your disciplinary knowledge, your developing interdisciplinary skills and other disciplinary perspectives, you will analyse the context and factors impacting your chosen case study, choose a problem and develop an interdisciplinary response to that problem. In doing so, you will learn how to apply and communicate your disciplinary skills, knowledge and perspectives in real-world interdisciplinary contexts.

Case studies include:

  • Westmead Dental Hospital: How can we enhance the accessibility and utilisation of services in Westmead Dental Hospital?
  • Westmead Children's Hospital: How can we enhance and improve the hospital experience for children and their families?
  • Dealing with Death: How can we enhance the support provided to patients and their families experiencing the prospect and reality of death from illness?
  • School and Health: How can we enhance the quality of learning experiences and educational outcomes for students in hospital?

How to apply

Interdisciplinary Impact @ Westmead

Students from all disciplinary backgrounds are encouraged to participate in these projects.

To be eligible, you must be enrolled in a FASS bachelor degree with room for a 6 credit point elective, and you must have completed a minimum of 18 credit points at 2000-level or higher.

This unit requires faculty permission for enrolment. To request this permission, email with your name, SID, degree and intended majors.

Enrolments are open until Friday 27 July 2018.

More information

Unit of Study: FASS3999 Interdisciplinary Impact*
Sessions: Semesters 1 and 2, 2018
Credit: 6 credit points

*this unit is available as a degree elective and cannot be counted towards the requirements for any majors.