Defining Digital Pedagogy

January 9, 2016 § Leave a comment

What is digital pedagogy?

wikipedia.digital.pedagogy.smIf you don’t have a definition, you might think of checking Wikipedia, but I’m afraid that won’t work for you. Given this absence, we’re asking our network to help us with the definition by entering it on a google form here, tinyurl.com/whatisdigped, or tweeting it to the hashtag #curateteaching.

I’ve been working on the answer to this question for the past few years in collaboration with Matthew K. Gold, Katherine D. Harris, and Jentery Sayers. Our project, Digital Pedagogy in the Humanities: Concepts, Models, and Experiments is currently under development with MLA Books, available in github at https://github.com/curateteaching/digitalpedagogy, and has one set of keywords undergoing open peer review in the MLA Commons at https://digitalpedagogy.commons.mla.org/: failure, multimodal, poetry, professionalization, project management, race, sexuality, and text analysis. « Read the rest of this entry »

Yes, Undergrads Can Do Digital Humanities

April 3, 2013 § 1 Comment

Davidson student, Ayesha Shah ’13, leads elementary students through her geotagged math map service-learning project.

When I first started researching digital humanities at liberal arts colleges I was dismayed to hear a comment made at the 2010 Digital Humanities Conference in London: “There is no place for undergrads in Digital Humanities.” That is manifestly untrue.  Here’s some of the proof that’s come through my inbox this week of undegraduates doing digital humanities and other forms of digital scholarship. « Read the rest of this entry »

Crowdsourcing, Collaboration, Feedback, and Grading

January 10, 2013 § Leave a comment

One of the challenges of crowdsourcing identified by the Transcribe Bentham project was a disconnect between a vision for crowdsourcing as driven by collaborative effort and community feeling and the reality that individual contributors seemed to be more driven by receiving feedback from editorial staff and not from fellow contributors.  In “Building A Volunteer Community: Results and Findings from Transcribe Bentham” after reporting the relatively low amount of collaborative work on manuscripts, Tim Causer and Valerie Wallace conclude,

This all suggests that volunteers appeared to prefer starting transcripts from scratch, and to work alone (Table 6), with communication and acknowledgement from staff being of much greater importance than collaboration with other users. (Digital Humanities Quarterly. 2012. 6.2, paragraph 72)

This situation reminds me of the challenge of promoting collaborative work in the classroom, a challenge I often experienced when managing peer review of student writing.  I found that I had to “sell” peer review to my students because they didn’t value the feedback of fellow students but rather wanted feedback from the instructor–essentially the authority figure in the classroom.  I think we see the same thing with the Transcribe Bentham project. Like students, contributors want validation from the experts, i.e., those running the project. « Read the rest of this entry »

Developing a Curriculum for Undergraduate Work in the Digital Archives

December 17, 2012 § 1 Comment

I want to highlight a recent journal issue and a seminar from 2011 because each documents ways to engage student in applied digital work through the archives.  I’m addressing them together because I believe that combined, they suggest a model for a sequential undergraduate curriculum for digital archives.   « Read the rest of this entry »

Undergrads Do Archaeology, Civic Engagement and Digital Humanities

September 17, 2012 § 1 Comment

Undergraduates at Hamilton College are participating in an archaeological dig led by Prof. Nathan Goodale. This project illustrates the variety of learning experiences and high impact practices that can come from engaging undergraduates in collaborative research with faculty using digital methodologies.  Not only do students engage in collaborative, student-faculty research, they also see the public impact of that research as it is being used by Sinxit activists to support claims to their ancestral land. The project is part of Hamilton College’s Digital Humanities Initiative, and uses digital techniques such as a digital database of cultural and linguistic information, iPads for data collection in the field, 3-D Modeling of Sinxit buildings, and a film about the Sinxit, past and present. When I interviewed Prof. Goodale in 2010 during a visit to Hamilton College to learn about DHi, it became clear to me that he wasn’t striving to be at the cutting edge of digital humanities research and teaching.  Rather, his project uses the best tools available and those tools happen to be digital.  That lesson is far more important to undergrads, whether they identify themselves as digital humanists or not.

Read more about it in this story from the Chronicle of Higher Education: Archae0logists Uncover Markers of an ‘Extinct’ Ancient Tribe on Contested Land. (Note that this is a premium article, so, unfortunately the link above expires in 5 days).

Process Checklist for Integrating Digital Humanities Projects into Courses

September 13, 2012 § 5 Comments

In 2011 Kathyrn Tomasek and I co-taught several instances of our workshop on Integrating Digital Humanities Projects into the Undergraduate Curriculum. In the workshop, Kathryn shared her experience building the Wheaton College Digital History Project into her courses.   Together we developed this checklist to help other faculty and staff work through the process of integrating work on digital projects into a course. « Read the rest of this entry »

Crowdsourcing, Undergraduates, and Digital Humanities Projects

September 3, 2012 § 8 Comments

Crowdsourcing could be a silver bullet for integrating digital humanities methods into the undergraduate curriculum.  Why?

“Crowd” by flickr user James Cridland

Crowdsourcing means getting the general public to do tasks. Jeff Howe explains the phenomenon in “The Rise of Crowdsourcing” (Wired Magazine, June 2006) by analogy with outsourcing.  This method of labor is growing for scholarly and cultural heritage projects, and that’s where it intersects with the undergraduate curriculum.  Collaborative manuscript transcription projects, like Transcribe Bentham, have received quite a bit of the attention, but there are a variety of opportunities out there for motivated students to engage in the process of digitizing, preserving, and studying collective resources and data.  For example, the Perseus Digital Library (whose flagship collections cover the history, literature and culture of the Greco-Roman world) has drafted a call to

Advance our understanding of the Greco-Roman World! Contribute to the Scaife Digital Library — improve existing materials and to create new ones! If you want to understand the present and invent the future then FREE THE PAST!

This call lays out a variety of ways to contribute, including translation, definition, citation, text correction, manuscript transcription, text markup, mapping, and clarifying ambiguous names, words or grammar. If your students answer this call or one like it, what will they gain?  Is this just grunt labor or are their potential learning outcomes? Why is this a silver bullet for DH in the classroom? « Read the rest of this entry »

My latest at NITLE’s Techne blog: What is Digital Field Scholarship?

August 17, 2012 § 1 Comment

Originally posted on August 17, 2012 at NITLE’s Techne blog, http://blogs.nitle.org/2012/08/17/what-is-digital-field-scholarship/

The Domain of Digital Field Scholarship

The Domain of Digital Field Scholarship

On August 29 at 4 pm EDT Prof. Jim Proctor of Lewis and Clark College will lead a NITLE Seminar on digital field scholarship and offer the opportunity for faculty and staff in the NITLE network to join a sandbox and experiment with this approach over the next academic year.  Some of you may be wondering what, exactly, digital field scholarship is and why it is important for liberal arts colleges. « Read the rest of this entry »

Wheaton College Digital History Project

June 25, 2012 § 2 Comments

Page spread from Laban Morey Wheaton's day book.

Page spread from Laban Morey Wheaton’s day book.

The Wheaton College Digital History Project led by Dr. Kathryn Tomasek, Associate Professor of History at Wheaton College, offers an excellent example of how to integrate a digital humanities project into the undergraduate curriculum.  Students help transcribe and markup documents from the college’s archives. Project goals include:

  • Teaching historical methods through transcription and markup of primary sources with TEI*-conformable XML**
  • Making hidden collections accessible
  • Encouraging collaborative research and pedagogy
  • Exploring the intersections of history and digital media

Find out more about the project from these sources:

Wheaton College Digital History Projects Receives Grant from NEH Office of Digital Humanities

April 1, 2012 § Leave a comment

The Wheaton College Digital History Project has received a Level I Digital Humanities Start-Up grant from the Office of Digital Humanities of the National Endowment of the Humanities. The grant is entitled, “Encoding Financial Records for Historical Research,” and funded

A meeting of historians of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century America, archivists, and technical experts to discuss the development of a module for financial records for the Text Encoding Initiative to allow for additional mark-up and analysis of those records found in manuscript collections.

Many of the records being encoded by the Wheaton College Digital History Project consist of financial records.

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