Interdisciplinary Learning


For the last two decades, Lehman College's Freshman Year Initiative program (FYI) has offered first-year students a comprehensive interdisciplinary learning experience. FYI, which has won two peer-reviewed national awards, would be happy to share its best practices. The FYI program is built on a learning community cohort structure aimed at broad intervention in the academic experience of freshmen. Strategies focus on all aspects of the student’s experience, embracing academic, social, and humanistic concerns. The learning communities are based on curricular integration of linked courses, resulting in an interdisciplinary approach to first-year studies. The program initiates faculty dialogue and development, and builds awareness of the critical importance of integrating first-year students into the college community. The learning communities that emerge help to foster greater intellectual connections between students and their faculty, and between disciplines. Collaborative instructional strategies require students to take an active role in their own learning. The social nature of the academic experience links them as connected learners. Simultaneous engagement with learning for students and faculty underlies learning community rationale.


Teaching, Learners, Interdisciplinary Learning, Learning Communities, First-year Students, Collaboration


Learning in Higher Education


Paper Presentation in a Themed Session


  • Steven Wyckoff
    • Director, Freshman Programs, Lehman College of the City University of New York, United States United States
  • Zenaida Bough
    • Assistant Director of Freshman Programs, Lehman College of the City University of New York