Crossroads is a multi-faceted interdisciplinary research-and-teaching experience for UC Santa Barbara doctoral students, encompassing scaffolded collaborative research projects and opportunities to translate research into the undergraduate classroom through curriculum development and closely mentored teaching. The program takes its name from the multiple intersections involved: of disciplines; of research and teaching; and of faculty members, graduate students, and undergraduates. Crossroads projects involve collaborative studies with faculty and graduate fellows from multiple departments, pedagogical training, curriculum design possibilities, and closely mentored teaching experiences in the undergraduate classroom. UCSB Crossroads awards provide financial support for groups of graduate students on a project. The Graduate Division welcomes the opportunity to partner with Divisional Deans and groups of faculty who are planning an interdisciplinary research and/or teaching project that includes interdisciplinary training of graduate students. The current call for proposals represents a collaboration with the College of Creative Studies.

Crossroads 2.0

An Interdisciplinary Research-and-Teaching Experience

The Graduate Division and the College of Creative Studies announce a new teaching opportunity, following in the tradition of the original Crossroads. We invite pairs of graduate students to submit a proposal to teach an undergraduate course to be offered in the College of Creative Studies (CCS) during the 2021-22 academic year.  The course should be built around a social justice or environmental justice theme, and would be taught by two graduate students coming from different fields (i.e. distinguishable disciplinary epistemologies). 

Current Call for Proposals

Proposals are due on June 1, and decisions will be announced by June 15. 

Information for Applicants

Interested applicants may already have graduate student colleagues from other departments in mind for a collaboration, but we will also host an event during spring quarter intended to bring together graduate students to find others with like interests. We especially encourage interested students to enroll in GRAD 210 (taught by Dr. Lisa Berry and Dr. Josh Kuntzman) as an opportunity to develop an idea for such a course. GRAD 210: College and University Teaching: From Theory to Practice, engages with strategies for applying pedagogical theories and evidence-based teaching to course design, implementation, assessment, and evaluation, and is offered spring quarter.

In the College of Creative Studies, the goal is to offer an educational experience that presents students with opportunities to discover how their own disciplinary knowledge can come together in generative ways with that of other disciplines around an important issue. CCS already offers incredible opportunities for undergraduates to explore a specific discipline deeply; this course would provide one opportunity for them to work on thinking across disciplines

Program Details and How to Apply

The students selected for Crossroads 2.0 will be provided:

  • a stipend of $5,000 each for Summer 2021 to begin working on the course
  • a second stipend of $5,000 each for Fall 2021 to finalize the syllabus while holding a TA or GSR position in their department
  • an Associate position each to teach the course in Winter 2022

To apply for Crossroads 2.0, pairs of students should submit:

  • a 3-5 page description of the course concept (specifying the social or environmental justice theme, interdisciplinary approaches
  • a plan for developing the course) and a c.v. for each student.

Proposals are due on June 1, and decisions will be announced by June 15.

Past Crossroads Projects

From 2013 to the present, the first model of the Crossroads program funded eleven interdisciplinary projects representing 22 disciplines and fields. Click here to view the list of past projects.

Whether or not it’s something we do in our own work, it pushes each of us, especially me, to think outside the box of the regular approach to my topic.

William Keene Thompson,Ph.D. `19, History
2016 Crossroads Fellow

Read more about Crossroads Program experiences in The Current.

Tejas Aralere

In the Unconscious Memory Crossroads Fellowship I’ve collaborated with other individuals who believe, like me, that the institutional divide between the Humanities and Sciences should not condemn student interest in exploring beyond the boundaries of their home discipline.  Furthermore, I found a group of academics who all believe that this interstitial intellectual space between disciplines is most conducive to innovative ideas with real-world relevance.

Tejas AralereClassics
Unconscious Memory

Madeleine Gross

Overall, from the crossroads experience, I have learned both the merits and difficulties inherent in interdisciplinary research and I hope to continue down this path into the future.

Madeleine GrossPsychological & Brain Sciences
Unconscious Memory

For questions about the program, please contact:

Gerardo Aldana
Dean of the College of Creative Studies

Leila Rupp
Interim Dean of the Graduate Division