Big history and the secondary classroom: a twenty-first century approach to interdsciplinarity

Tracy Sullivan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Big History poses big questions addressing big issues like 'How did we get here? Where are we going?' and it encourages exploration of deep philosophical questions about the meaning of life and the nature of the cosmos. Answering these questions pushes teachers and students to move beyond the confines of traditional disciplinary boundaries to examine the interconnections between knowledge, ideas, and phenomena. Does this make Big History iterdisciplinary? Does Big History move beyond the interconnection of disciplinary knowledge to transcend these boundaries? Harnessing the expenences of Australian secondary Big History teachers, this paper explores the practical nature and definition(s) of the twenty-first century curriculum, learners, and iterdisciplinarity in the secondary context. Through the lens of a pedagogical vehicle to equip future generations with the skills they need to live responsibly and effectively in an interconnected global community.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTeaching and researching big history
Subtitle of host publicationexploring a new scholarly field
EditorsLeonid Grinin, David Baker, Esther Quaedackers, Andrey Korotayev
Place of PublicationVolgograd, Russia
PublisherUchitel Publishing House
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)9785705740277
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • interdisciplinarity
  • curriculum
  • pedagogy
  • secondary


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