When I completed my PhD in history in 2005, digital humanities classes were only beginning to appear in university catalogs, but much has changed since that time. Many of us who had minimal training in digital methods have adopted them for our own research and begun to teach our students to embrace them. I am excited to return as a graduate student through George Mason University’s Graduate Certificate in Digital Public Humanities and hone my digital history skills. Last semester’s course (as the previous blogs demonstrate) introduced students to various digital tools such as Omeka, Kepler.gl, Voyant Tools, and Palladio. I used Esri ArcGIS Story Maps to tell the story of nine University of the Pacific students whose lives and educations were disrupted by Executive Order 9066.
This semester’s course focuses more on connecting digital methods to public history practice, specifically theories and methods central to reaching non-academic audiences. I hope to learn about the variety of ways that public history practitioners are using digital methods and platforms to reach new audiences and to develop new story-telling skills. I hope to explore avenues for greetings and fostering academic-community partnerships that foster historical knowledge about campuses and communities.