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Arts & Humanities in the Digital Age

Arts and Humanities in the Digital Age

Applications now closed

The CHASE Arts and Humanities in the Digital Age programme will engage you with the concepts and practices that form the field of Digital Humanities, preparing you for the challenges of doing research in an increasingly digital world.
After completing the course, you will be able to analyse, understand and use digital data, to assess information technologies critically, and to integrate discipline-specific enquiry with digitally-driven methodologies and media to develop your own research. You will learn through workshops that combine methodological reflection with hands-on exercises and by developing a Digital Humanities project together with other students.
The course includes two compulsory workshops (Introduction to Digital Humanities and Web Authoring), plus four optional workshops and a compulsory final project review. You must register for at least two of the optional workshops.

Please use the application form below

Winter School: Introduction to Digital Humanities [compulsory] 

11-13 January; Goldsmiths, University of London (11th Richard Hoggart Building 342a, 12th Rutherford Build. Prokofiev Room, 13th DTH 110)

•           Plenary address (Martin Eve, Birkbeck)

•           Metadata and digitisation (Paul Gooding, UEA)

•           Introduction to Digital Text Analysis (Francesca Benatti, OU)

•           Introduction to Information Visualisation (Mia Ridge, BL)

•           Introduction to Digital Images (Stefan Rüger, OU)

•           Conceptual thresholds (Matthew Sillence, UEA)

•           Digital Projects workshop

Workshop 1:  Information Visualisation

3 February Birkbeck, University of London (GOR B13)

Mia Ridge (BL)

Workshop 2: Digital Images

14 February, Birkbeck, University of London (RUS 102)

Matthew Sillence (UEA) and Stefan Rüger (OU)

Workshop 3: Digital Texts

3 March, Courtauld Institute of Art (Seminar Room 1)

James Baker (Sussex) and David King (OU)

Web Authoring and Mid-project Review [compulsory]

14-15 March 2017, UEA

Paul Gooding (UEA) and Matthew Sillence (UEA)

Workshop 4: Databases

28 March, Birkbeck, University of London (MAL 351)

Sharon Webb (Sussex)

Project presentations [compulsory]

24 April 2017, Courtauld Institute of Art (F44 – New Wing)

Francesca Benatti, Paul Gooding, Matthew Sillence 

Winter School: Introduction to Digital Humanities programme

11-13 January; Goldsmiths, University of London (11th DTH 110, 12th Rutherford Build. Prokofiev Room, 13th RHB 342a)


This three-day, intensive workshop is aimed at CHASE-funded students with little or no experience of digital methods for research in the Arts and Humanities.

 Learning objectives

 At the end of the course, the participants will be familiar with the main methods, practices and technologies of digital research in the Arts and Humanities and will be able to relate them to their own fields of study.

The participants will also form groups to develop a practical digital research project, which they will complete during a series of follow-on workshops during January-March 2017 and present at the final AHDA project presentations on 24 April 2017.

Sessions comprise talks, presentations and practical workshops. Topics covered include:

●        digitisation

●        metadata

●        information visualisation

●        text analysis

●        text mining

●        digital image retrieval

●        digital art history research

●        historical datasets

●        professional development

Required equipment

Students are required to bring their own laptop computer (a tablet is not sufficient for the computing needs of the course). Preliminary reading materials will be distributed in advance of the course and may include the installation of specific software packages.

Workshop descriptions

 Building Blocks for DH Basics: Digitisation and Metadata Creation (Paul Gooding, University of East Anglia)

Digital Humanities research has benefited from an explosion in digitisation of materials over recent years. This session will therefore introduce students to the methods for producing this data, focusing on the digitisation of cultural and heritage materials in academia, and the library, archive, museums and galleries sector. It will take students through the process for digitising materials for research, explaining the fundamentals of selecting materials for digitisation, undertaking 2D digitisation of archival materials, and storing and preserving digitised materials. It will also demonstrate the importance of metadata (effectively data about data) in allowing innovative approaches to the analysis of humanities materials: this will include a practical workshop where we will use reference management software as an example of metadata creation tools that can then be used to undertake bibliographic analysis using commonly available software programmes. By the end of the session students will have an awareness of the complete digitisation lifecycle, be familiar with key technologies, and have practical experience of creating metadata to support research.

Introduction to Information Visualisation (Mia Ridge, British Library)

 This session will give you an overview of a variety of techniques and tools available for data visualisation and analysis in the humanities. You will learn about common types of visualisations and the role of exploratory and explanatory visualisations, explore examples of scholarly visualisations, try some visualisation tools, and know where to find further information about analysing and building data visualisations.

Introduction to working with Digital Texts (Francesca Benatti, Open University)

 This session introduces students to working with digital texts for literary and historical research. Students will learn how to use some common text analysis tools and methods to

explore, interrogate and visualise patterns in digital texts. Examples of text repositories for literary and historical research will be introduced and evaluated.

Working with digital images (Stefan Rüger, Open University and Matthew Sillence, UEA)

The first part of the session, led by Dr Matthew Sillence, will look at the use of digital images in research, looking at issues surrounding the use of digital images in art history. It will examine closely a selection of digital projects to identify methodological and technological issues that arise when using digital images in humanities research. 

The second part of the session, led by Prof Stefan Rüger, The Open University, will focus on the retrieval and annotation of digital images, and discuss common image file formats and technologies.

Introduction to working with databases (Sharon Webb, Sussex)

Description to follow.

Conceptual thresholds in Digital Humanities (Matthew Sillence, University of East Anglia)

 This session explores a method of analysing research training needs through threshold concepts. These are concepts that underpin our learning experiences, and when encountered, can have an irreversible effect on how we think. Understanding methods, tools and approaches in the digital humanities provides many encounters with ‘troublesome knowledge’, both in terms of the technical skills required and the application to research. By reflecting on the previous sessions of the introductory workshop, students will examine what have been the most transformative experiences so far, and which areas of knowledge they would like to build on to unlock specialist skills and approaches for their research. The end of the session will involve developing a training plan related to the Arts and Humanities in the Digital Age programme and their own research outcomes.

Digital Humanities project planning

In this session, students will divide into groups and develop a proposal for a Digital Humanities project, which they will develop during the remainder of the AHDA course and present at the final workshop on 24 April 2017.