This course provides an introduction to the application of digital tools to humanities questions, and contextualizes these questions and applications within the cultural changes that pervasive digital technology has brought about. The purpose is to familiarize students with ways in which digital technology has both transformed humanities research, and enabled humanities scholars to maintain the essence of their work in a new age. This course serves as a core course in the digital humanities minor.
Tools for Digital Humanities is a core course in the Digital Humanities minor. Students will learn how the World Wide Web and other emerging technologies like video games affect humanities research. Students will also learn a core set of production skills for the web and game design so that they can participate in multidisciplinary humanities projects and research teams.
Digital tools, technologies, and spaces have, in many ways, radically transformed both literacy and writing practices. In other ways, however, our understanding of digital tools, technologies, spaces haven’t transformed to adapt much of an impact. In this class, we’re going to explore the ways in which digital tools, technologies, and spaces have changed our current intellectual, professional, and personal theories of literacy, writing, and technology itself. We’re going to do so from several directions:
As the world increasingly becomes "digital," it is important to understand how new forms of texts and reading require, as Matthew G. Kirschenbaum and Doug Reside note, "new work habits, new training, new tools, new practices, and new instincts ." This course examines the development and function of digital archives from a practical "hands on" perspective. In focusing on the creation, management, and preservation of electronic texts and images as it relates to digital archives and related topi cs, we will gaining experience with image scanning, OCR use, text - encoding processes, and other skills. We will also discuss copyright law and apply digital archive principles and practices by using Omeka, an open source web - publishing platform, as part of a course project. In addition to understanding how metadata is used with electronic objects and records, we will become familiar with the basics of "web archiving." This course uses an interdisciplinary digital humanities approach to the study of arc hives, and employs active learning activities and critical reading and writing to understand how digital representation is constantly changing relative to user needs and advancements in technology. In addition to skills assignments and a collaborative tea m project, the course has midterm and final exam.
This course is a restricted elective in the Technical Communication major and Digital Humanities minor and was designed with humanities students in mind, so if you haven’t had any prior experience with hypertext technology, this is fine. All majors are welcome. In this course, we will work on our writing skills, our website architecture skills, and our technical coding skills based on CSS and HTML to pr oduce 1) a personal website, and 2) an informational website that you build from a 10-page term paper you write for this course on anything to do with digital humanities or technical communication.
By the end of the semester, you will assume the following roles:
Writing in Digital Environments is a class that explores digital writing for both humans and machines. As such, the class will ask you as students to approach a variety of writing and coding situations not fro m a "coder" mentality but from a "writers" mentality. Some parts of this class are "technical" in nature but you should not let that scare you off (alternatively, you should not think this class will be a cake walk because you know Python!). Approaching di gital environments from a "writers" perspective means paying attention to code but also paying attention to things like digital rhetoric, cultivating communities both online and off, access, and network logic.
The topics we cover, the readings we do, and the discussions we have in this course should help us to: