I think the idea of promoting polymathy-type learning and education cuts
out a lot of confusion when it comes to STEAM education, and has the same
outcome of emphasizing a well-rounded education.
The issue, for me, with the acronym STEAM is that it not only leaves out
disciplines of value by name (though they may be there by implication, like
design, or humanities other than art), it also stands a bit in opposition
to the STEM educational movement. Like so many issues in this world, this
may come down to a choice in terminology - we can stop pitting STEM vs
STEAM and promote polymathy as something which supports and fosters both.
Additionally, some mistake STEAM as meaning that you have to engage in
every discipline equally to do it right - this misses the mark a bit,
mostly because it's unrealistic to typical human interest and behavior
(most people are not interested in everything, all at once). Polymathy is
more general - know a bit about everything, leaving room to know a lot
about a few things.
It's important to remember, in my opinion, that there's nothing wrong with
choosing to study one thing and become one thing. We will always need
people to hyperspecialize - a certain type of work gets done that way.
However, there are great benefits to being at least a bit well-rounded (as
we all would agree). Polymathy supports this notion without bringing in the
confusion of incomplete acronyms.
There was a polymath retreat I heard about through a colleague (Monica
Lopez-Gonzalez) through the Imagination Institute - there does not seem to
be information about it online yet, but the institute seems to support this
type of polymathic work generally: http://imagination-institute.org/
*Neuroscience-based art: www.JuliaBuntaine.com
*Adjunct, Innovator-in-Residence at Rutgers UniversityDirector at SciArt
*Editor-in-Chief of SciArt Magazine <http://www.sciartmagazine.com>*
On Wed, Aug 30, 2017 at 12:54 PM, roger malina <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> margaret wertheim brings this academy for polymathic study at USC to
> our attention
> USC Sidney Harman Academy for Polymathic Study
> Located in its own quarters on the second floor of Doheny Memorial
> Library, the USC Sidney Harman Academy for Polymathic Study offers a
> series of conversational encounters intended to intensify polymathic
> (integrated interdisciplinary) awareness. Conversations and other
> forms of presentation will include faculty, junior faculty,
> postdoctoral scholars, graduate students, and undergraduates.
> They define their way of thinking through four quadrants:
> These discussions are anchored in and structured by the Four
> Quadrants of Polymathic Inquiry: critical and integrative thinking,
> study of the great polymaths, tapestry, and communication.
> an example of one of their projects
> Polymathic Labs
> Polymathy values different ways of learning, knowing, and being,
> ranging from the written word to various modes of embodiment and
> creative practice. A new initiative of the Academy, the Polymathic Lab
> will extend its integrative learning to the tactile and haptic,
> offering students a space for experimentation, play, and creative
> exploration. Through workshops on design, digital authoring, and other
> creative endeavors, we will explore the value of making to polymathic
> inquiry. A roster of visiting artists, designers, and makers will join
> us to expand our thinking about the potentials of polymathic practice.
> all best from Australia
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