Using Digital Sources
Full course description
In this skills course, you will be trained in a critical and responsible use of digital primary sources. Building on period 3 course ‘What is research?’, we will explore how digitalisation changes how we ﬁnd, select, and use primary sources, and how this aﬀects notions of source criticism, reliability and validity that are well-established in the humanities and the social sciences. Working on topics that are central to the parallel content course, ‘ICT Revolutions’ (namely, the so-called “Computer Revolution”), this skills course focuses on three types of primary digital material: text, structured (numerical) data, and audio-visual material. Through hands-on, in-class assignments, you will learn to ﬁnd, select, evaluate and interpret your own primary source material, which is an essential part of any academic analysis. The course will make extensive use of resources and databases oﬀered by the University Library.
By the end of the course you will be able to:
- Define and describe key concepts relevant to (digital) source critique and interpretation.
- Identify relevant digital source types and collections, and assess their potential and limitations.
- Prepare various data sources for analysis and perform basic analyses with dedicated software such as Atlas.ti.
- Develop and argument insights on the relationship between social change and digitalisation based on source evidence and analysis.
Owens, T., Padilla, T. (2020). Digital sources and digital archives: historical evidence in the digital age. International Journal of Digital Humanities. DOI:10.1007/s42803-020-00028-7