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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : History

Undergraduate Course: Digital History and the shaping of historical knowledge (HIST10381)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryDigitization has transformed the potentials for the research, writing and dissemination of historical knowledge. Simultaneously, the advent of web-based social media is reshaping the accessibility of academic history, and suggests new methods for conducting and disseminating historical research. The emerging fields within Digital Humanities include Digital History. This course will explore the implications of the ┐computational turn┐ for the research, writing and dissemination of history, considering Digital History in relation to the histories of information, and the book, and more widely within Cultural and Public History.
Examining the scholarly applications of technology that enable researchers to analyze primary sources at a scale not previously possible, this course will ask students to engage critically with the potentials and problems associated with Digital History. In particular, weekly seminars will explore the research potentials of text-mining, mapping and crowd-sourcing for historians, as well as examining the applications of social media, such as blogs and twitter to the research and dissemination processes. We will also develop the intellectual tools students need to critique the sources they are increasingly using for research online.
At the same time, weekly worksheets will help to develop students┐ digital literacy skills, in their own study time, enabling them to develop their own small digital projects within a scholarly environment, which is also informed by the public potentials of such projects.
Course description 1. Introduction to Digital History; setting up twitter and blog access, online searching and bibliographic, tagging and filing tools
2. Histories of Information and the book
3. Digitization and the computational turn: potentials and problems for history
4. Social media: potentials and problems for research and dissemination
5. Text-mining: Moretti and ┐distant reading┐
6. Data-mining: the Old Bailey records
7. Digital mapping, and geo-referencing: spatial history
8. Crowd-sourcing: the Bentham transcription project
9. Individual meetings to discuss and feedback on coursework digital projects.
10. Visualisation and digital images
11. Summary of literature and supervised project development
Digital literacy skills training in the weekly worksheets includes worksheets on: OMEKA, OCR, XML, TEI P5 XML, Google Ngram, Voyant, ManyEyes, Palladio, FieldTrip, DIgimap, Neatline, TileMill, Access, Wordpress, Visualising Urban Geographies mapbuilder.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements A pass or passes in 40 credits of first level historical courses or equivalent and a pass or passes in 40 credits of second level historical courses or equivalent.
Before enrolling students on this course, Personal Tutors are asked to contact the History Honours Admission Secretary to ensure that a place is available (Tel: 503783).
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 History courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses. Applicants should note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum does NOT guarantee admission.

** as numbers are limited, visiting students should contact the Visiting Student Office directly for admission to this course **
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2014/15, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  26
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 22, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 172 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 40 %, Coursework 20 %, Practical Exam 40 %
Additional Information (Assessment) ┐ digital history project (web, mapping or text-based or interpretative, equating to 1000 words) (20%)
┐ 2,000-2,500 word essay (40%)
┐ two-hour Degree examination, two essays (40%)

If taught in Semester 1 the VS assessment is a take-home exam which would be taken in December
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
Students will acquire and demonstrate via assessed coursework:
┐ a critical understanding of the main theories of Digital History, and an awareness of current Digital Humanities projects. They will also be able to position the potentials of Digital History within other historical fields.
┐ critical skills in evaluating and problematising digital history projects, and execute a small digital research project.
┐ generic cognitive skills including the scholarly use of social media, and writing for various genres, which will be assessed via class online participation.
┐ digital literacy and IT skills associated with the practice of Digital History, using a range of software.
┐ the ability to work independently on individual research projects, developing their own ┐voice┐ within social media forums, and work with a team on developing a class digital project.
┐ knowledge of the necessary ethical and professional considerations in researching history within a potentially public forum.
Reading List
41. Reading List (for EUCLID)
┐ Cohen, D. and R. Rosenzweig. Digital History: A Guide to Gathering, Preserving, and Presenting the Past on the Web (Philadelphia, 2007).
┐ Weller, Martin, Digital scholar: how technology is transforming scholarly practice (London, 2011)
┐ Weller, Toni, History in the Digital Age (London, 2013)
┐ Weller, Toni, Information History in the Modern World: Histories of the Information Age (Basingstoke, 2011)
┐ Schreibman, Susan, Ray Siemens and John Unsworth (eds.), A Companion to Digital Humanities (Oxford, 2004)
┐ Gold, Matthew K. (ed.), Debates in the Digital Humanities (Minneapolis, 2012)
┐ Weel, Adrian van der, Changing our Textual Minds: Towards a digital order of knowledge (Manchester, 2011)
┐ Michel, Jean-Baptiste, et al., ┐Quantitative Analysis of Culture Using Millions of Digitized Books,┐ Science, 331:6014 (2011), 176-182
┐ Gregory, Ian N., and Paul S. Ell, Historical GIS: technologies, methodologies and scholarship, Cambridge studies in historical geography, 39 (Cambridge, 2007)
┐ Knowles, Anne Kelly (ed.), Placing History: How Maps, Spatial Data, and GIS Are Changing Historical Scholarship (Redland, 2008)
┐ Finkelstein, David, and Alistair McCleery (eds.), The Book History Reader, 2nd ed. (Abingdon, 2006)
┐ Journals: History and Computing (to 2007); International journal of humanities and arts computing; Digital Humanities Quarterly (from 2007); Journal of Digital Humanities (open-access, online)

Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills This course will help students develop a range of transferrable skills including:
┐ the ability to gather, sift, organise and evaluate metadata
┐ the ability to develop an individual project, and to work as a team-member on a class project
┐ digital literacy skills including HTML coding, digital mapping, geo-referencing, basic web-site and blog design
┐ online research skills and awareness of relevant databases
┐ utilising social media for research and dissemination purposes
┐ the ability to write across a range of genres
┐ the capacity to evaluate critically digital projects and online sources
Course organiserDr Anna Groundwater
Tel: 0131 (6)50 2553
Course secretaryMiss Clare Guymer
Tel: (0131 6)50 4030
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