Digital Scholarship Incubator and Training Opportunities

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In Fall 2017, Boston College Libraries’ Digital Scholarship Group (DSG) held its first Digital Scholarship Incubator, an opportunity to develop a digital research or pedagogy project within a cohort of digital scholarship practitioners. The DSG received applications from students, faculty, and staff and Boston College, Harvard University, MIT, Northeastern University, the University of New Hampshire, and Wellesley College. We selected fourteen participants for the seven-week program.

Each week had a thematic focus, ranging from humanities and social science data wrangling to geospatial visualizations to textual analysis. The Incubator also included a project planning component; participants revised a project proposal over the course of the sessions. The curriculum can be found on the Digital Scholarship GitHub repository, and the DSG has created a Zotero library for recommended reading.

Participants worked on a variety of projects. Some, like Harvard’s L. Kelly Fitzpatrick, were interested in using particular tools to build digital prototypes and projects. Others, like BC’s Kathleen Lyons, wanted to learn how to better incorporate digital media into their pedagogy. Incubator participants wrote initial and closing reflections that can be found on the Digital Scholarship blog.

The DSG anticipates offering an Incubator program in Fall 2018, but there are plenty of opportunities to learn more about digital scholarship throughout the semester. Our Spring 2018 events are free and open to the public, though we do request that participants register. All workshops take place in the Digital Studio, room 205 in the O’Neill Library. Below is a list of our currently scheduled events:

January 18, 2018, January 24, 2018, and January 31, 2018, 11-12:30 pm: #1Lib1Ref Edit-a-Thon

#1Lib#1Ref (One Librarian, One Reference) Wikipedia campaign is an international event during which librarians are encouraged to add at least one reference to a Wikipedia article. Join us in this effort! We welcome all open knowledge enthusiasts, whether you are a librarian or not. We will introduce you to the basics of editing Wikipedia and walk you through adding citations before moving to an open editing session. You can find more information or join us virtually at the BC Libraries #1Lib#1Ref meetup site. You’re welcome to attend one or multiple sessions.

February 8, 2018 and April 18, 2018, 11-12:30 pm: Creating Digital Exhibits with Omeka

In this workshop, participants will learn how to use Omeka.net to create digital exhibits. Together we will look at examples of successful digital exhibits. Then facilitators will demonstrate the basics of describing, organizing, and displaying your content. Bring your own image files, or use the sample images provided in the workshop. You are welcome to attend either session.

February 21, 2018, 3-4:30 pm: An Introduction to Visualizing Data with Tableau

In this workshop, participants will get an introductory, hands-on learning experience of Tableau. The workshop will be focused on Tableau key functions, including:

  • How to connect to data sources
  • How to create visuals and assemble them into a dashboard
  • How to publish the dashboard to the Tableau Public server

February 27, 2018, 3-4:30 pm: Mapping with Tableau

Mapping data is one of the many ways Tableau helps people see the information in relevant, insightful ways to make better decisions. In this workshop, participants will learn how to analyze their data geographically, how to plot the data on a map in Tableau, and what types of maps can be created in Tableau.

February 28, 2018, 11-12:30 pm: Collect & Prep Your Data for Visualization and Analysis

Are you planning a research project? Just want to learn more about how to manage data? This workshop will provide an introduction to tools and methods for gathering and cleaning data, with an eye towards preparing data for analysis and/or visualization.

This workshop may be especially useful to humanities and social science researchers, librarians, and students.

March 13 2018, 11-12:30 pm: Copyright for Digital Scholarship Practitioners

In this workshop we will discuss copyright concepts that are common in the course of Digital Scholarship projects, from the first identification of materials for use in the project to the final release of your project. Participants will develop an understanding copyright issues that they may encounter in the course of their work and will learn about specific examples from the field.

March 13 2018, 1-4:00 pm: Transcribe-a-Thon

Want to help transcribe historical documents for public use? Join us for a Transcribe-a-Thon of Boston Public Library’s Anti-Slavery Manuscript collection.

March 29, 2018, 11-12:30 pm: Editing Images for the Web Using Photoshop

Learn how to prepare images for the web using Photoshop.

Sarah Melton

Head of Digital Scholarship, O'Neill Library