Boundary Crossing @ Wageningen University

Boundary crossing competence, the competence to work together with others outside one’s own scientific domain, institute, culture or context, is regarded as one of the major competencies needed by future university graduates in order to respond better to emerging global challenges.

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Boundary crossing is also at the forefront of the new educational vision of Wageningen University and has been topic of its educational innovation and research. At Wageningen University, there is a need to address boundary crossing more explicitly and structurally throughout the diverse curricula both at the bachelor and master level. A comprehensive overview of existing practices is needed, as is (scientific) insight in how boundary crossing competence develops in students and is best supported by teachers and educational environments.

The proposed project aims at mapping existing boundary crossing practices in education, developing a conceptual foundation for the development of boundary crossing competence, and further improving and implementing boundary crossing experiences. We focus at the level of learning pathways, and will develop a boundary crossing toolbox for and with teachers, course coordinators and management.

The project follows a design and research-based approach, consisting of several phases: (1) mapping and valorisation of existing boundary crossing practices, (2) connecting boundary crossing good practices (toolbox) in a curricular learning pathway, (3) implementation of curricular boundary crossing pathways, and (4) monitoring, effects measurement, evaluation and improvement. The project team consists of educational researchers, chair holders, lecturers, study programme managers and policy staff.

Involvement of key stakeholders

To guarantee a good linkage between theory and current and future educational practices the following stakeholders are involved in the project:

  • Representatives of study programmes (i.e. programme directors, programme committees, course coordinators, teachers), in particular of the BSc and MSc Food Technology, Animal Sciences, Environmental Sciences, International Land and Water Management;
  • Concern staff responsible for educational vision and policy (e.g. Board of Education, educational policy advisors)
  • Educational research staff (e.g. researchers at the chair group Education and Learning Science (ELS)).