While working with others from across disciplines, I hope to learn about different approaches to research. Students with a more scientific background may have been taught to question problems in a way that is conducive to scientific inquiry while a student with a background may have a totally different approach to raising questions and finding answers. It is important that we expose ourselves to multiple styles of reasoning because it can help us view our own work from different angles and potentially open up new doors in our own research. Hopefully by gaining multiple perspectives, it can strengthen our projects and make us better thinkers for endeavors to come.
Although our projects are all different, each one of us is motivated to make sense of the world around us. Our fields of research have different means to achieve that end, but we all have the same desire to understand. When reading through everyone’s blog posts, I feel as though we all have universal appeal to our work. Although right off the bat, I may not understand something, after reading through everyone’s blog posts I could easily understand why the research is important and how it can be utilized for others within the scholarly community and in the public in the future research.
When considering those in my cohort group I see a similar approach being taken by Gray Eden. In Gray’s project they are utilizing poetry, essays, and the visual arts to explore their cultural heritage in a book form. In my own project I will also be trying to understand my own cultural heritage by using creative measures within documentary filmmaking. Approaching problems through the lens of a filmmaker allows me to address questions in such a way that feels authentic and organic for me. I can imagine that for Gray, their approach to their work allows them to access that same type of authenticity. Thus, creative expression for the both of us helps us construct our arguments and tackle the issues in front of us.
In my own project I find myself really expanding my horizons within research and dipping into many disciplines to gain a broader perspective which I never really considered before. To better understand Alzheimers, I have been reading medical journals and books about the disease which is something outside of my literary comfort zone, but has been so informational! Having this knowledge has allowed me to talk to my family members and open up a conversation about Alzheimer’s and their health as they age. With Alzheimer’s people still do not know how to address the disease, and it is almost looked at as a taboo, yet just by gaining more information it has taught me how to conduct this conversation. We are actively going against the stigma just by talking about Alzheimer’s and that is like a little victory for me. Other days I have been watching documentaries that handle home video material to see how other documentarians, especially those concerned with more personal and experimental forms. This is in my comfort zone more so, and it really inspires me creatively. Sometimes I find myself reflecting on my modern philosophy course I took last semester and theorizing about the inner self and how much our memories have to do with our personal make up.
With that list of inquiries being laid out, I find that I can look to my fellow cohorts and see where our disciplines overlap! Within each of our projects a web has been woven and the interconnectivity of our work has been revealed which is pretty excellent! The benefit of working with people across disciplines is that I will be given information that I may never have stumbled upon in my life. It is an expansion of horizons. By working alongside such ambitious fellow researchers I will be learning something new every day. That’s a pretty awesome prospect. Some of the obstacles will be communication of certain concepts, which I think is expected. However, if we are mindful about some of the gaps within our communication we can compensate for that and actively work to diminish any issues. For instance, if I am trying to explain some concepts about film it might be helpful if I provide visual examples in order to illustrate my thoughts. Throughout this experience I am striving to keep an open mind and to continue to let curiosity and the desire to gain more knowledge drive my every actions.