Nowadays, more and more humanities programs are allowing their students to complete projects instead of written theses. Masters and PhD candidates can engage with the digital humanities for thesis projects at programs like the University of Central Florida’s Department of History. Such projects can give students real-world experience and also be engaging and exploratory.
Does this sound like something you might be interested in, but not sure where to begin? Then read on.
Across the world, humanities scholars are creating and contributing to cutting-edge digital humanities projects. We have selected 5 of the most innovative from a broad spectrum of categories. Hopefully these will inspire you as you create your projects!
- Mapping Projects like ORBIS. The Stanford Geospatial Network Model of the Roman World is great fun to play around in. It also reveals the nuances of travel at the height of the Roman Empire and offers suggestions for using and applying results. Choose a starting point and destination, a mode of travel, aquatic options and more to learn about the speed and price tag of any given route.
- Crowdsoucing projects like “What’s on the Menu?” New York Public Libraries is calling all amateur “transcribers” to assist them in identifying text from thousands of menus. Not only does the project help make these fascinating pieces of culinary history available to researchers, it also engages its audience in hands-on history. So far, 1,287,336 dishes have been transcribed by users across the world.
- Primary source database projects like RICHES Mosaic Interface™. The interface holds and makes available over one thousand items related to central Florida history. What is even more amazing are the many ways users can search and make connections in the database. The website creates the experience of an archive, including offering suggestions for digging deeper, just as a helpful archivist would.
- Virtual landscapes like Virtual Rome. Dr. Matthew Nicholls of the Department of Classics at the University of Reading is in the process of developing a beautiful 3D Rome c. AD 315. Such images reveal a great deal about the nuances of life in ancient times for researchers and teachers. You can also use virtual worlds to create games that engage in humanities themes.
- Online exhibits like Our Marathon. The Boston Bombing Digital Archive & WMBUE Oral History Project contain images of artifacts, oral histories, and images related to the Boston Bombings in 2013. Currently, the project serves more as a digital archive and repository than an exhibit, but you can definitely add interpretation to your project to make larger humanities arguments.
What are some digital humanities projects that you are currently engaged in? Have any to add to our list? Leave a comment, below!
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