The Course

The PG Diploma in Digital Humanities and Cultural Informatics will incorporate the basic steps essential to all work in digital humanities:
● Conceptualizing humanities research in the context of new digital technology
● Acquisition and processing of material (digitization, metadata, tagging, mark-up)
● Organization (system and platform architecture, information structure, systems of classification etc.)
● Data mining and processing (creating and optimizing search engines, performing programming operations, querying data, generating results)
● Communication and presentation (user/community interaction, interface, front-end applications, standards).

The course will help students develop firstly, a critical sense of the problems of the humanities in an age of digital technology, and secondly, the analytical and practical skills to understand and apply computing to the source materials and problems of the humanities. With the proliferation of digital technology and its use in every field of cultural activity, there is a growing need to impart key skills in digital content management – creation, preservation, delivery and study – to individuals who will thereafter be in a position to use them in a wide of variety of employment contexts. As the requirements of study in the humanities are often not met by proprietary software packages driven by the market, there is an urgent need for humanities scholars to learn how to use open source platforms to design and tweak the packages that will serve them best. This course uses both formal methods and techniques and hands-on practice in applying them to real-world situations. A representative selection of case-studies drawn from a number of disciplinary areas will be used to exemplify typical problems and the combination of technical means needed to approach them successfully. Because of the range and depth of these problems, the programme is able to equip students not only for further research at the doctoral level but also for work in publishing, museums, libraries, business and the public services.
At the core of the programme is the attempt to use digital technology and computational methods to enhance the study of the imaginative variety of cultural expression. The challenge for the humanities is to use machine language and capacities to deal with cultural material that is not easily quantified or processed. By creating structured models out of the irregular and disparate data of the humanities, the students will learn to judge how the application of computing can be made to produce interesting results and also to learn how these analytical and practical processes can throw new light on the object of study.


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