Key areas that will be addressed in the context of this seminar include: (a) synthesizing, building from, and critiquing prevailing approaches to digital social science and the digital humanities, (b) reviewing existing and exploring new digital tools for scholarship, (c) discussing challenges digitally-oriented scholars may experience with respect to intellectual property, fair use, publication, and promotion and tenure evaluation, (d) examining new issues in pedagogy, given the proliferation of so many novel forms of digital media, literacy, and tools.

Digital Storytelling

Interdisciplinary scholarship has long focused on the critical role that narratives play in human thought and action. As our world increasingly moves into digital spaces, we’d like to explore how everything from social media to smart phones are and could be changing the nature of stories. We’re open to a wide variety of ways that digital storytelling might be defined. As we explore ways to define and use digital storytelling, we will mine rich existing resources, such as the open online course out of the University of Mary Washington, DS106, for ideas and materials.
Visit the Digital Storytelling forum here.

Social Annotation

Over the last decade and a half, numerous Social Annotation (SA) platforms have sprung up for both popular and academic use, offering educators the opportunity to experiment with different SA platforms and classroom practices to meet their specific research and pedagogical goals. Research carried out from 2001 to 2010 suggests that SA can improve student participation and engagement as well as reading comprehension and peer-to-peer interaction. At the same time, “readers may also benefit from reviewing shared annotated documents…by gaining ideas, seeing others’ different perspectives, and building knowledge about the annotated resource” (Novak, Razzouk, and Johnson 40). These benefits naturally lend themselves to academic publishing and the peer review process. We’d like to explore ways to  invigorate the peer review process for ourselves and our students, deepen student engagement with classroom learning materials, socially incentivize classroom participation, and facilitate collaborative writing and learning. Visit the Social Annotation Forum here.

Big Data, Digital Labor & Cultural Critique

There are few disciplines that have yet to be touched by the affordances (and limitations) of big data. The questions we face as scholars and teachers continue to multiply: What are the possibilities of big data (however conceived) for our working lives? What pressures does it present for scholarly and professional labor? And who gets to control this kind of information, and toward what ends? We may not agree on what the present and future of these themes portend for us all, but this part of the seminar might reveal the convergence and divergences we all face moving forward.
Visit the Big Data and Digital Labor Forum here.

Institutional Support and Evaluation of Digital Scholarship

Questions about the nature of what constitutes scholarship continue to abound in the academy. More than ever, professors now blog and contribute intellectual work to the public sphere. Theses and dissertations are becoming less text-centric than before, with students bringing multimodal forms of communication to their work. Sometimes a broadly focused piece in a new online journal with will have far more impact than a narrow piece of writing in a traditional print journal, presenting challenges for promotions and tenure committees who are struggling to understand this terrain. No matter what the issue, we’d like to focus on what is and should be changing in the support for and evaluation of digital scholarship. What are existing supports for digital scholarship and what is needed to more fully make Baruch College a digital destination for both students and faculty?
Visit the Institutional Support and Evaluation of Digital Scholarship forum here.