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UA Course Catalog Prerequisites:
No prereqs found
Course Description and Credit Hours
This cross-disciplinary course introduces students to the methods of the digital humanities by applying those methods to the study of religion. Students will learn a variety of digital methods and tools and apply those to data drawn from religious studies. Students do not need a background in computing or religious studies.
Required Texts from UA Supply Store:
- LUPI / OBSERVE COLLECT DRAW (NEW ACCESS CARD ONLY) (Required)
introducing students to the theories and methods of the digital humanities
introducing students to the ethics of acquiring, analyzing, interpreting, and presenting data within the context of religious studies
providing students opportunities to apply theories and methods from digital humanities to religion “data”
presenting data as contested, complex, and ethically charged
Student Learning Outcomes
Identify and Produce data for the study of religion in culture
Describe digital objects in terms of data, analysis, and presentation
Develop technical skills for creating digital objects
Create a digital essay
Reflect on their work and learning
Other Course Materials
Lupi, Giorgia, and Stefanie Posavec. Observe, Collect, Draw!: A Visual Journal. Illustrated edition. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2018. (Purchase at the bookstore or online.)
Drucker, Johanna. The Digital Humanities Coursebook: An Introduction to Digital Methods for Research and Scholarship. London: Routledge, 2021. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781003106531. (Available as PDF through Blackboard.)
Outline of Topics
Skills Week: Working with Data
The Big Tent of DH
Religion and DH
What is Data Anyway?
Skills Week: How digital projects work
Data Privacy, Sovereignty, and Open Access
Skills Week: Using a CMS
Modeling and Machine Learning
Big Data and the Rise of Data Science
Final Exam (Project Due)
Exams and Assignments
Weekly Assignments: 20 points
Readings Journal: 10 points
Writing good reading notes is a necessary skill and since we have multiple essays for each class, it will help you keep your ideas organized.
Details on what the entries should include will be posted on Blackboard.
I will check your reading journals 3 times over the semester. Please bring them to class on the following days:
Participation: 10 points
Your participation grade reflects attendance, engagements in class, and completion of various additional tasks of the course.
Skills Labs: 20 points
Throughout the semester there will be 10 lab assignments, due the Friday after class. These will build on the skills or concepts that we discuss on Tuesday. Details for the labs will be posted on WordPress and Blackboard before the Tuesday class.
We have a busy semester, so to give you a little flexibility, you have two free passes. Full points will be given if 8/10 labs are submitted and are complete.
Data Diaries: 20 points
(Due Friday, September 23)
The challenge with digital humanities is we have to start thinking about the world in terms of data, which can be a stretch for those of us who are used to working in the world of texts and ideas. But seeing data is not necessarily something that needs a computer. Rather, it is a way of observing yourself and the things around you.
Using Observe, Collect, Draw!, you will complete three guided activities of your choice. The only constraint is that they need to be of different time durations. Details will be posted.
Dataset and Datasheet: 20 points
(Due Friday, October 21)
In preparation for your final project, your second project is to create a dataset for investigating a research question related to religion and culture. Details will be posted.
Final Project - Digital Essay in Scalar: 30 points
(Due Thursday, December 8)
Your final project will be a digital essay, posted in Scalar, that uses your dataset and the digital methods that we go over in class to explore your research question. Details will be posted.
I grade on completion of the assignments, so you will earn full points if you fulfill all of the requirements on time. Each assignment will include a self-evaluation.
I give additional points for work that exceeds expectation and I take your self-evaluation into consideration.
I want you to achieve the learning outcomes of the course, so the assignments and my feedback are focused on helping you develop the skills you need to succeed.
Policy on Missed Exams and Coursework
The course work is designed to help you prepare for class and to keep you on track for the final project. As a general rule, I do not accept late work unless arrangements are made with me in advance.
Class attendance and participation in the course discussion is a central component of the learning experience of this course. You have two unexcused absences that you can use without question. After that, your participation grade will drop one point for each additional unexcused absence.
Please contact me before class if you will be absent due to illness or other unavoidable event.
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.
Severe Weather Protocol
Please see the latest Severe Weather Guidelines in the Online Catalog.
Pregnant Student Accommodations
Title IX protects against discrimination related to pregnancy or parental status. If you are pregnant and will need accommodations for this class, please review the University’s FAQs on the UAct website.
Under the Guidelines for Religious Holiday Observances, students should notify the instructor in writing or via email during the first two weeks of the semester of their intention to be absent from class for religious observance. The instructor will work to provide reasonable opportunity to complete academic responsibilities as long as that does not interfere with the academic integrity of the course. See full guidelines at Religious Holiday Observances Guidelines.
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