Interdisciplinary Collaboration for College Access and Success in an Age of Technological Innovation
Corwin, Zoë Blumberg
Tierney, William G.
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As games and social media gain traction as viable tools for K-16 educators, the need for collaboration among educators, researchers and game designers grows. In this white paper, the authors undertake an analysis of the problems confronted and lessons learned by researchers involved in an interdisciplinary project aimed at increasing access to higher education through the design, piloting and implementation of a series of college access games. The games exist in card game and online formats and were developed by educational researchers, university-based game designers, assessment experts and high school students. Through the medium of games and online technology, the intervention aims to afford thousands of marginalized students access to quality college guidance and boost their motivation to advocate for their college needs. Although interdisciplinary research has gained currency over the last few decades, scholars have focused very little attention on the process of conducting such research. As more and more research projects and practical interventions involve technology, the need for interdisciplinary collaboration is increasing. The authors posit that cultural differences exist among disciplines and need to be addressed at the start, and throughout, a project. Reflecting on the interdisciplinary and collaborative approach of the game project offers an opportunity to analyze how the process and products of interdisciplinary collaboration might be utilized to improve college access and completion for low-income youth and better equip K-16 institutions with the tools to engage students in relevant and effective ways.