Brown Bag Seminarium

Interdisciplinarity in science and home economics curricula across three Nordic countries

on the 26th September at 12 o’clock CET


The presentation will describe a content analysis of science/chemistry and home economics curricula from Finland, Norway and Sweden.

The purpose of the study has been to explore possibilities as well as potential challenges in interdisciplinarity between the two subjects, otherwise thought as having much in common. Rather than exploring obvious connections such as the impact of nutrition and diet on human health, the focus has been on interdisciplinarity on the areas of food and cooking. The analysis revealed substantial potential for interdisciplinary collaboration and/or curricular integration. This is seen both in common declarative knowledge content (’declarative knowledge overlap’) and, more interestingly, meeting points between subject-dependent practices and ways of thinking (’transfer of practices and ways of thinking’).

In a second stage, themes common to the subjects were revealed to arrive at tangible notions of the possibilities, and challenges, of interdisciplinarity. Subject boundary-crossing is not uncomplicated, and we have conceptualised teachers’ roles as lying in the span between ‘teacher as polymath’ and ‘teacher as collaborator’.

The work is presented by Erik Fooladi. He is associate professor at Volda University College, Norway, within science teacher education and home economics teacher education. His main research interest is research in education and communication in domain intersections, such as between science, cooking, and food culture, and between scientific and procedural/craftsmanship/practical knowledge.

About the co-authors:

Maiju Tuomisto has a PhD in chemistry education in the area of educational card and board games for lower secondary level. PhD in chemistry is from the Unit of Chemistry Teacher Education, Faculty of Science, University of Helsinki, Finland. Maiju has been working as a Chemistry teacher educator 6 years and as a Chemistry and Home Economics teacher over 15 years.

Janni Haapaniemi, PhD in Education, is a University Lecturer in home economics teacher education at the Faculty of Educational Sciences, University of Helsinki. Her current research interests are in integrative approaches to learning and the development of home economics education at both comprehensive and higher education levels through national and Nordic-Baltic research collaboration.

Join Zoom Meeting:

Meeting ID: 677 2331 5631, Passcode: 044430

The work is published in International Journal of Science Education: