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Transdisciplinary and Interdisciplinary Theorizing

Aging is a complex and diverse process, and the complexity of the aging experience is rarely recognized. Gerontological research and practice often do not take into account key principles of interdisciplinary research and activity and the experience and involvement of actors such as the elderly. The traditional dualism of objectivity and subjectivity, and the idea that knowledge must be presented as a correspondence between objective reality and subjective expression, is questioned by interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary research and behavior. This deeper understanding of knowledge supports the adoption of an interdisciplinary approach to aging and gerontology.

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Interdisciplinary approaches are often used to investigate difficult situations that escape simple or interdisciplinary explanations. Transdisciplinary refers to activities that combine interdisciplinary perspectives and aim to emerge new and comprehensive knowledge that goes beyond these perspectives (Klein, 2017). According to the study, transdisciplinary research is defined as the creation of a “joint conceptual and methodological framework that not only integrates but transcends individual academic perspectives” (Klein 2017: 79). Another definition of transdisciplinary research is problem-driven research that includes collaboration between academic researchers as well as non-academic stakeholders (Klein, 2017). For example, a patient, family, or health lobby organization may be a member of a local community that promotes sustainable development or a health lobby group that seeks feedback on patients, families, or health research, policies, or practices that directly affect them.

The interdisciplinary model is undoubtedly an advantage as a starting point or heuristic for researchers working on tasks that integrate perspectives from different disciplines, regardless of their position on the above questions, in the fields of health sciences and nursing, which are related to age and gerontology but are more broadly based, in recent decades to integrate research and practice perspectives and pursue interdisciplinary news in a collaborative team. There has been progress in understanding that one rarely needs all the knowledge needed to solve a complex problem (McMurtry et al., 2017). However, interdisciplinary diversity and the participation of interested groups alone are not sufficient to make the study interdisciplinary in this sense. Sasser (2017) emphasizes the relevance of collaborative and integrated approaches. That is why I believe that one approach cannot be favored over another.

Transdisciplinary theoretical work moves the field of gerontology in a future direction. Many of the most difficult problems society is facing today cannot be properly understood or addressed in individual areas. As a result, many pupils have been encouraged to interdisciplinary strategies that now no longer simplest draw on; however, additionally try to mix disciplinary thoughts in this type of manner that new, overarching understanding that transcends unique views would possibly emerge (Klein, 2017). Transdisciplinary thinkers have created a step by step techniques for bringing collectively and integrating numerous areas. Typical levels in those techniques contain articulating an issue, figuring out applicable disciplines, negotiating roles, spotting disputes, and, maximum importantly, locating not unusual place ground.

In conclusion, the two theories are different and have their advantages. While they both suggest a certain understanding of aging, the transdisciplinary theory is more innovative and flexible. While one considers all discipline knowledge to be situated and incomplete, this does not exclude it from being subjective. After all, people’s physical and social environments impose strict limitations on what knowledge may accomplish. Interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary knowledge must function well in the contexts in which they are used.


Klein, J. (2017). Typologies of interdisciplinarity: the boundary work of definition. In: R. Frodeman, J. Thompson Klein and R.C.S. Pacheco (eds). The Oxford Handbook of Interdisciplinarity. 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

McMurtry, A., Kilgour, K.N. and Rohse, S. (2017). Health research, practice and education. In: R. Frodeman, J. Thompson Klein and R.C.S. Pacheco (eds). The Oxford Handbook of Interdisciplinarity. 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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Sasser, J.R. (2017). Our research is living, our data is life: toward a transdisciplinary gerontology. Issues in Interdisciplinary Studies, 35, 14–28. Web.

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