Arts & Humanities: Don't Leave College Without Them

I'm passionate about English & Neuroscience labs and literature: A new way forward

English and Neuroscience, that I am pursu - ing for my Arts degree. When it’s not a lab partner expressing their distaste for Creative Writing (‘You’re doing that at university?’) or a fellow writer demonstrating a flair for science-hating (‘I can’t believe you study molecules by choice…’) it’s often a state of befuddlement that makes me want to either shake the person in frustration or console them with a gentle head pat. To all of them I say, “¿por qué no los dos?” So tell me: why not both? Our current aca- demic system – in Australia, and in many parts of the world – is founded on the basis that disciplines are discrete and compart- mentalised. There are even divisions within departments. Some academics build walls with their specializations that only a select few can pass. This is not only accepted but

cultivated. Rivalries between faculties may seem laughable on the sporting field or during a scav - enger hunt but the messages embedded in these aspects of student culture have ramifications in the classroom and far beyond. The pervasiveness of these great divides is rampant in the literature – think Snow’s The Two Cultures and Graff’s Profess - ing Literature: An Institutional History. However, not all academics and students are blind to it. An example of an academic approach to combat- ting these divisions is the Digital Humanities pro- ject “WhatEvery1Says: The Humanities in Public Discourse” (WE1S), which is currently operating out of UC Santa Barbara in the United States. The Curriculum Lab for the program is run by director and teacher Abigail Droge, whose role is to take a lead on pedagogy and advocacy aspects whilst en- suring a close dialogue between the research and practical outcomes in the classroom and commu- nity. In her blog posts she describes the struggle of having interdisciplinary projects realized in the

by Bianca Yeung (originally published on

‘Hey now, I don’t want to be that guy, but trust me, I’m coming from a good place when I say this: you should really switch from Arts to Science.’ It was the pointy end of Semester 1 and one of the more good-natured lab assistants had been making con- versation with us Chemistry students by asking the age-old question, ‘So what degrees do you all do?’ After nodding to the usual B. Sci., Med. Sci., B. Adv. Sci., he had been visibly shocked to hear that I, a Bachelor of Arts undergrad, had infiltrated the Chemistry Labs.

Bianca is a lover of learning who is pas- sionate about bringing people and ideas together through stories. As a student, she has led multiple creative projects, install- ing an immersive wellness experience to promote student mental health and horeo- graphing for her university's dance society. She has worked as a Learning Designer and writer and continues to explore her interest in neuroscience. You can find her work at

Alas, it’s been a common reaction when people hear of the combination of majors,


Arts & Humanities

Don’t Leave College Without Them


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