module specification

SM5062 - Digital Humanities (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Digital Humanities
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Total study hours 150
105 hours Guided independent study
45 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 30%   Data visualisations (individual work)
Coursework 70%   An interactive project (individual work)
Running in 2017/18 No instances running in the year

Module summary

From analysing cultural data sets to curating online collections this module introduces students to the intersection of computing and humanities. It will critically analyse and question existing data structures and categories and discuss the ethical dimensions in handling and creating data sets.
Additionally it will explore tools and technologies to produce, curate and interact with knowledge from born-digital to digitised data and content – from single creator to participatory projects. Students will learn how to effectively evaluate, organise and visualise data in practical workshops and seminar discussions.

Module aims

• To enable students to appreciate and evaluate digital humanities as an academic discipline
• To enable students to evaluate and visualise data
• To enable students to plan and create a digital humanities project


The syllabus explores:
• Complexity and categorisation
• Big data and cultural analytics
• Representation and mediation
• Archives and online collections
• Networks of knowledge
• Data research and analysis
• Data visualisation and tools
• Participatory projects
• Databases and management
• Creating and curating multi-media content
• Meta data and tags

Learning and teaching

Teaching methods include lectures and on-line interactive learning material, tutorials, seminar discussions, role-play activities and computer lab sessions. Students will be expected to attend lectures and take part into on-line activities as well as comment on their readings. The teaching and learning strategy will adopt a problem-solving and situated approach to expose students to real-life scenarios and digital media briefs.
A blended learning strategy will be employed to enhance the learning experience. The VLE will be used as a platform to support online discussions, and situated learning experiences and to facilitate formative assessment and related feedback as well as a tool to integrate useful online learning materials provided by professional organisations and other relevant sources.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:

1. Evaluate and visualise research data
2. Analyse and curate multi-media content for an interactive project

Assessment strategy

Data visualisations (weighting 30%) - will assess the students’ ability to evaluate and visualise data.

An interactive project or proof of concept (weighting 70%) is designed to test students' ability to organise and curate multi-media content. (LO2)

Students may pass on aggregate.


Required reading:

• Berry, M. ed. (2012) Understanding digital humanities. Houndmills, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan
• Bowker, G. and Star, S. (1999) Sorting things out: Classification and its consequences. MIT Press: Cambridge and London
• Gray, J., Chambers, L. and Bounegru, L. (2012) The Data Journalism Handbook, O'Reilly Media (available as free online e-book at )
• Gold, M. ed. (2012) Debates in the digital humanities. London: University of Minnesota Press
• Foucault, M. (1966) The Order of Things. Routledge: London and New York - Available at:
• Halfpenny, P. and Proctor, R. eds. (2015) Innovations in Digital research Methods. London: Sage
• Latour, B. (2005) Reassembling the social. Oxford University Press: Oxford - available at:
• Manovich, L. (2012) Visualization Methods for Media Studies. available at:
• Manovich, L. (2012) Museum Without Walls, Art History Without Names: Visualization Methods for Humanities and Media Studies. Available at:
• Terras, M. et. Al. eds (2012) Defining digital humanities: a reader. Farnham, Surrey, England : Ashgate Publishing Limited

Additional reading:
• Hacking, I. (2001) The social construction of what? Harvard University Press: Cambridge and London

• Digital humanities quarterly

Priority will be given to emerging media/technologies that are salient at the time of delivery.