Wood Guthrie's New Years Resolutions 1942



Produced during the DHSI:

“Ecologies of Knowing: What’s in a Word?” (Cenkl, Prezi ZIP)

“Primary Research Report” (Friend, PDF)

“Producing a Guide about the City of Montpellier” (Duthoit and Saint)

“Digital Dubliners” (Whitacre and Hedley)

“Creating a Mini Digital Anthology” (Ballantyne and Lent)

“Elements of Literary Study” (Ficke)

“Mapping our San Francisco: City, Culture, Research” (Rozendal)

“Evaluating Book Digitization” (Martin)

“Introduction to the Study of Art” (Skinner-LaPorte)

“Behind the Written Record: The Socio-Cultural Mechanics of Making History” (Bilak, PDF)

“Comparison of Oral History Transcripts and Audio Recordings” (Larson, PDF)

Exercise for a First-Year Law Course (Nayyer, PDF)

Image Annotation: “Old Norse Gods and Heroes” (Baer, PDF)

Harry Smith’s Anthology of American Folk Music (1952): Wiki Project (Gleason, PDF)

Analyzing “Die heilige Johanna der Schlachthöfe” by Bertold Brecht” and the related grading rubric (Jeske, PDF)


Produced by others (prior to the DHSI):

Collaborative Mid-Term (Harris)

TechnoRomanticism Timeline (Harris)

timeline assignment prompt (Harris)



TechnoRomanticism (Harris)

Digital Dickens Syllabus (Harris)

Digital Humanities course (Harris)

Introduction to Digital Humanities (Sayers)

Mapping the Digital Humanities (Sayers)

Digital Literary Studies (Sayers)

Jentery’s portfolio (for syllabi referenced throughout the seminar)



Prometheus Smurf

list of student projects



Based on seminar discussions: “Mapping Novels with Google Earth” (Erin Sells), Brian Croxall Tutorial for MIT SIMILE/Exhibit, 10 Digital Timelines Reviewed (Fien Danniau), “Spatial Praxes” (special issue of Kairos), “Geolocating Compositional Strategies” (Sayers), and “Measuring Fair Use: The Four Factors” (Stanford)



Please answer the following questions by writing for 30 seconds to 1 min without stopping writing. If you have a question, embed that in your quickwrite. For your assignment, use the assignment that you would like to complete by the conclusion of DHSI.

1. What is the intended knowledge acquisition with this assignment?

2. How will students demonstrate this knowledge acquisition?

3. How will you value process?

4. How will you evaluate collaboration (see rubric above)?

5. Will peer review or comments be incorporated into the assignment?

6. Is the process and/or outcome public to the world or just to the students?

7. Where does the assignment fit into the semester (1st assignment? last one?)?

8. Where does the assignment fit with your larger goals for the course?

9. How will you build on the knowledge or a skill from this assignment?

10. What resources are required to complete the assignment? (access to subscription databases?)

11. What technical proficiencies are required by the student? (See EdTech for tutorials!)

12. Do you require a lab day for learning technologies or presenting process/final projects? (make sure to leave time in the schedule)

13. Will the work be done in class or out?

14. How will you engage with this assignment (process and/or outcome) during class discussion?

15. Have you left room for waypoints/check-in moments for the assignment (especially relevant for assignments that come later in the semester or require several steps)?

16. How does this assignment differ from previous assignments that don’t use technology?

17. Can you boil the project down to a single research question for your students?



Watch “Prometheus Smurf”

Situation: General Education course, the final project at a 1st- or 2nd-year level, with limited writing pre-requisites

Write the prompt that anticipates this student project. Consider all of the quickwrites we went through for your assignment.



Example 1

Your goal: Use a modern cultural icon/scenario to retell the a traditional historical myth. Present your product in a medium/technology appropriate to the cultural scenario you have chosen.

The format: We might provide examples of format (or use in-class brainstorming to approach expectations). This section of the assignment would be left fluid to respond to in-class brainstorming. This element of creating the assignment is itself a checkpoint.

Specificity of length: Again, determined by collaborative discussion given students’ choices of format.

Evaluation: Ability to use a new medium, ability to adapt a classic story

Final product: Present your work in class, share justifications for the choices you made to create the product; explain how the tools influence the outcome; explain how the medium is attached to the story and the historical context of the story being told.


Example 2

Narrative Mash-Up

Combine two modes of storytelling, using a contemporary media form to describe and reinterpret a classic cultural myth or narrative. This may include video, audio, internet meme generator, or it might take a paper based form like a short story, or graphic novel.

Proposal (25%)

500 word explanation of your proposed creative project. This will include a complete works cited with at least two secondary critical sources. Students will be required to meet with the instructor during office hours to discuss this work during the week following submission of the proposal.

Creative Project (50%)

Projects should be under five minutes or five double spaced pages of writing. These are flexible guidelines meant to keep your workload manageable.

Peer Review (25%)

Students will evaluate two of their peers creative components using a rubric provided.

Personal Reflection (25%)

Each student will write a short 500 word response to describe their own process, the decisions they made and the challenges they encountered. This reflection will incorporate feedback from the peer review.


Example 3

Individual Final Project

Use a form of popular culture to describe or interpret a piece of canonical literature that would appeal to and be understood by an audience of children under 10.

Document your thought process and development of this idea by answering the following questions: 1. Workflow: How did you identify your choice of medium? Your choice of literature? Justify your choice of medium and how it appeals to the stated audience. 2. Provide your justifications in the form of a blog post and be prepared to present your ideas in class.

Use citation methods that are appropriate to the medium. Beware of copyright infringement and make use of creative commons: http://creativecommons.org/.

Learning outcomes 1. To be able to strategically pitch writing to an intended audience. 2. To be able to comprehend the course readings and synthesize, summarize, and recontextualize the material and its archetypal and dominant themes. 3. To develop a creative method of writing for the public sphere in order to take their ideas beyond the classroom. 4. To translating traditional academic citation processes into media based assignments.


Example 4

The student will create a multimedia transformation of a myth with considerations of intellectual property/copyright issues. The goal is to transmit what the student has decided to be the core idea of the myth. Choose a target audience and adapt the myth keeping appropriate the needs of the audience in mind. Once completed, the product should reflect a critical understanding of the myth intended for the appropriate audience. The student will also submit a written statement that supports the student’s choice of media, audience, and core ideas emphasized.


Evaluate the time needed to complete the assignment

Software needed

Copyright/Intellectual Property Issues (assume that this will available in the public sphere, associated with your name)

Presentation Time appropriate to the platform being used


Example 5

For your final project in this western civ course, you will be take one of the classic narratives from the semester and bring it into the 21st century by choosing a way to visualize this narrative. How is this tradition still important, still critical for our current moment. What dynamics of myth, history, or culture still be critical to current popular culture? How can you use a popular form (visual, multimedia, comic books, mystery, etc.) to retell and rewrite this story.

So, first you will choose a text from the semester that you will want to work with. Then, you will write up a proposal of how you rework the story identifying the medium and tools that you plan to use along with any questions or concerns that you might have about it—this will allow us to be resources for each others. Then, you will develop and bring in a storyboard for your project to present to the whole class so that we can crowdsource ideas, getting response before diving into start producing. Then, we will have series of lab days to work on it and develop these ideas. During these class days you will work check-in with a smaller group to help troubleshoot and take up the level of your project. This will sharpen your own skills of editing and revising.. For the final day of class we will present all of these projects to see how the classics would look translated through visualization into the current moment.


Example 6

1. Choose a work that we’ve covered in class over the last semester as the subject of your project.

2. Thinking about the classroom discussions we have had on myth and cultural values, develop a re-mediation of your chosen reading for a modern audience to show your understanding of a particular aspect of the story. (Refer to your readings from week three if you need to refresh your memory on the concept of re-mediation.) Also, demonstrate your understanding of how the story you have chosen ties into the larger themes covered in this course.

3. Use the digital tools available at the media lab (not just word-processing), to create your project. If you need technical help with your chosen media, schedule an appointment with the media lab well in advance of the deadline.

4. The project, in whatever format, should run no more than five minutes since it will need to be presented in class.

5. Prior to beginning this assignment, the class will develop other specific guidelines for the projects

6. Please design your project with respect for all of your peers who may come from diverse cultural and religious backgrounds.

7. Two weeks prior to the deadline, bring in an outline, script, or storyboard of your proposed project for class review. We will break into small groups and review each other’s work. You do not need to have a finished project at this point, but we want you to be able to get feedback from your peers and get a sense of whether your chosen media will be appropriate for your work. It will also help you to realize a)what technical assistance you might need and b) what your plan will need to be for finishing

8. You will be showing your final product in class, and at that time you will have to discuss your process of creation, what your intent was, and why you made the choices you did. You will also need to turn in your discussion of these points in a written (or electronic) format at the end of the class.


Example 7

Remix and mashups are common features of the contemporary era. For this assignment, you will have the opportunity to respond to a piece of literature that we have discussed in class by creating your own remix and mashup. Specifically, you will retell, analyze, and/or critique your chosen work in a multimedia format with images, sound, and text through the lens of popular culture (e.g. music video, television show, film, comic books). You may use any approved digital tool(s) in creating your project (e.g. Tumblr, ComicLife, iMovie, YouTube, stop motion animation). You will have the opportunity to present your finished project in class and receive comments from your peers. This is a creative project–have fun with it!


Example 8

Course: The Prometheus Myth in Contemporary Culture

Assignment: Creating a Mashup

Using a media presentation technology of your choice (this could include powerpoint, Prezi, imovie, youtube, garageband, video, photography, or any other medium you’d like to research) design your own “mashup” retelling of the culturally important myth of Prometheus that continues to circulate in popular imagination. In your retelling, you will need to demonstrate the following skills: an understanding of the processes of adaptation and cultural dialogue; a consideration of the meaning of layering and the generation of new forms of signification in this process; acquired technological proficiency in the medium/media of your choosing; an instruction of the media tool(s) you are using; through library research, demonstrate familiarity with appropriate texts and identifying significant / fundamental themes, concerns, and motifs; the ability to collaborate collegially.

Stages and components of the assignment

1. Journaling will happen throughout process of assignment and will be submitted at the end of the course writing workshop and brainstorming meanings of myth

2. Research the myth–both in its traditional form and in its contemporary manifestations–literature review discussing adaptations of the myth across history

3. Intro to the mashup from two perspectives: show vid on mashup culture and fair use / copyright / plagiarism / attribution - http://bit.ly/LcgSKq

4. Students should find both examples of existing mashups and creative tools

5. Introduce & work with media software & editing technology (lab day)

6. Group presentations on research of the myth

7. Process of creating the mashup: storyboard and/or script; developing the mashup itself; articulation of discovery path and/or “research narrative” (e.g., how and where did you find your clips/media?); peer reviewing and feedback sessions (ongoing group discussions); writing a critical analysis on another group’s presentation considering their mashup of the myth as dialoguing with their own; synthesize these reflections and media presentations into a possible publicly accessible format (class decides this).


Example 9

I have been thinking about how to implement something from the digital world into the 100 level 200 student course I TA’s twice last year. The problem with 200 students and one TA is that marking anything but a multiple choice/bubble midterm/final is really not feasible. An option for students who do not want their entire grade to be based on two exams is to write an optional essay paper and have their grade distributed differently across the three. Generally, 12-15 students opt to write the optional paper – its extra work so not all 200 submit papers. The problem is that the papers are generally horribly written and painful to mark. Both professors for the two terms I TA’d it were sadly disappointed by the work turned in.

Cathy Davidson, in a blog post I ready quite a while ago, and which is included in the course reader for Dig-Ped, made mention that her students write well online but poorly when it comes to a formal essay format. I’m am considering the idea, then, that instead of offering up the optional paper which is a lot of work to mark, blog posting might be an interesting alternative. Each term the students have to get through a course text book and either a reader or ethnography. Students who opt in can write a reflective post for each chapter. While there may be an increase of students who participate, they are still opting in to do additional work, so I suspect the number would not prohibitively high. Even so, they wouldn’t receive a mark based on content but rather on meeting the expectations of completing the 10 or so assigned chapters.

Image courtesy of Brain Pickings