Methods Digital Study of Rel
REL 503-001 | Fall 2021 | 1 Credit Hours
Dr. Jeri Wieringa
UA Campus Directory:
UA Course Catalog Prerequisites:
CD 225, CD 226, CD 244, CD 275, and CD 277
Course Description and Credit Hours
This course examines the relationship between language and society, with a primary focus on regional variation and social variation resulting from the interaction between various social constructs such as gender, class, culture, and ethnicity, with an emphasis on how variation might impact a clinical setting.
Required Texts from UA Supply Store:No required textbooks found.
Peter Denning and Matti Tedre, Computational Thinking (Available through UA Libraries - https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/book/8709327)
Michael Mendez, The Missing Link: An Introduction to Web Development and Programming (Open textbook from SUNY - https://open.umn.edu/opentextbooks/textbooks/203)
1. We will cover fundamental skills and concepts in the digital humanities
2. We will apply those skills and concepts to students' research area in religious studies
3. We will evaluate how the methods of the digital humanities can advance students' academic interests.
Student Learning Outcomes
Students in REL 503 will be able to
Use the command-line interface and computer languages to load and parse data
Develop a research question appropriate for computational analysis
Recognize and use HTML to structure text for the web
Recognize and use CSS to create effective an web text for communicating research idea
Other Course Materials
Ellen Lupton, Thinking the Type: A Critical Guide for Designers, Writers, Editors, & Students.
David DuRocher, HTML and CSS QuickStart Guide: The Simplified Beginners Guide to Developing a Strong Coding Foundation, Building Responsive Websites, and Mastering ... of Modern Web Design.
Outline of Topics
Computational Research in Religious Studies
Module 1 Computational Thinking: What kinds of questions can computers answer
Module 2 Interfacing with your computer: from graphics to text
Module 3 Loops and Algorithms
Module 4 Matching theory, data, and algorithms
Presenting Research on the Web
Module 5 Behind the web pages - structuring content with HTML
Module 6 Design and information archicture
Module 7 Applying your design with CSS
Module 8 Enhance your message with typography and images
Exams and Assignments
Computational Research Proof of Concept
In the first workshop, students will produce a computational research question related to their topic of study and a proof of concept using the skills learned in class. This work will be done in a Jupyter notebook. The proof of concept will be developed using existing and easy to access data, showcasing the computational approach. The research question should reflect critical engagement with both digital humanities and religious studies methods.
In the second workshop, students will produce a hand-coded web page that clearly and effectively presents their research to a non-specialist audience. Students will attend to issues of information architecture, typography, color, and content in designing their pages. In this assignment, the design and the content must work together to communicate the research interests of the student.
Students will submit a final reflection paper on the application of computational methods to research in religious studies. This paper, no more than 750 words in length, should consider what questions computational methods might illuminate for their research and what questions they would not be useful for examining. Students should also consider what changes the digital medium, whether in terms of research or presentation, required them to make with regards to their understanding of their research area.
Computational Research Proof of Concept 40%
Web Page 40%
Reflection Paper 20%
Final grades will be assigned according to the following grading scale
below 60 F
Policy on Missed Exams and Coursework
Due to the cooperative nature of the seminar, late and missed assignments frequently have negative effects on others within the seminar. Late or missed assignments, therefore, will be penalized.
If the circumstances leading to the late/missed assignment are beyond the control of the student, then reductions in penalties may be applied.
Students are expected to be present at each seminar session, having completed the assigned reading and done the assigned exercises. If a student cannot attend, please notify the professor as soon as possible.
Notification of Changes
The instructor will make every effort to follow the guidelines of this syllabus as listed; however, the instructor reserves the right to amend this document as the need arises. In such instances, the instructor will notify students in class and/or via email and will endeavor to provide reasonable time for students to adjust to any changes.
Statement on Academic Misconduct
Students are expected to be familiar with and adhere to the official Academic Misconduct Policy provided in the Online Catalog.
Statement On Disability Accommodations
Contact the Office of Disability Services (ODS) as detailed in the Online Catalog.
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Please see the latest Severe Weather Guidelines in the Online Catalog.
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