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Interdisciplinary Research course connects engineering, biology

Education Achievements

Interdisciplinary Research course connects engineering, biology

Second-year MultiSTEPS trainees honed their critical thinking skills and expanded their perspectives on interdisciplinary research during the required course GRAD 5134 Interdisciplinary Research: Engineering-Biology Interface, which is co-taught by an engineering and a biology faculty member. A foundation for this course are two recent National Academies' reports on interdisciplinary research, including a 2009 report that recommends a “New Biology” approach integrating biology with engineering and other disciplines. Trainees formed collaborative, interdisciplinary teams and identified topics for the program's grant challenge proposal. Course participants also had training in ethics, structured “brainstorming” for new research directions, defining their project’s “customer-base”, and in market research methodologies.