Multiple models of integrated learning: Conception, innovation, and effectiveness

Yin Cheong CHENG

Research output: Contribution to conferencePapers


In response to the paradigm shifts in ongoing educational reforms in different parts of the world, there is a strong movement of curriculum change towards integrated learning. In general, people believe that integrated learning can create a wide range of learning opportunities and possibilities to facilitate development of students’ high-level competence, thinking ability, and multiple perspectives in a more sustainable and holistic way. But, in practice there are also problems of misconception, mismatch between aims and means, misuse of integrated learning in curriculum reforms and classroom teaching and learning. All these result in not only ineffectiveness of learning and wasting time and effort of students but also creating burdens and chaos to teachers, parents and schools. How integrated learning should be re-conceptualized, re-designed and implemented to facilitate paradigm shift and innovation in learning and create opportunities for maximizing learning effectiveness is a crucial issue in both theory and practice. The keynote speech aims to address this issue and propose a typology of multiple models of integrated learning to analyze the conceptions, aims, approaches, processes, outcomes, effectiveness and limitations of various types of integrated learning ranging from integrated subject learning to enquiry-based learning. Depending on the nature of integration in learning, there are four basic models of integrated learning including method integration, subject integration, context integration, and cognition/competence integration. Each model has its own characteristics, strengths and weaknesses in conceptualization and application. There are also second-order models of integrated learning in terms of a combination of two or above basic models in curriculum design. This typology of multiple models provides a new theoretical framework to re-conceptualize research, innovation and new practice of integrated learning in different learning contexts or subject areas. Its implications are completely different from the traditional thinking.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2007


Cheng, Y.-c. (2007, December). Multiple models of integrated learning: Conception, innovation, and effectiveness. Paper presented at the Conference on Integrated Learning: Research and Classroom Practices, The Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong.


Dive into the research topics of 'Multiple models of integrated learning: Conception, innovation, and effectiveness'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.