The digital humanities is an interdisciplinary area of research involving the application of computational methods to humanistic topics of inquiry. Digital humanities projects range widely in scale and technologies. What unites the digital humanities is not specific technologies but a critical, humanistic approach to digitally-enabled research. There is a growing community of digital humanists across Vanderbilt. In close collaboration with the Center for Digital Humanities, Heard Libraries and the DiSC Office are committed to fostering the digital humanities at Vanderbilt by providing consultant expertise, including advice about the selection of metadata standards, programming languages, and digital tools and platforms. We'll also help you connect with other researchers on campus working on similar projects and make sure you make the best use of available campus resources.
A simple project may involve marking up a set of documents according to the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) schema or plotting historical events on a map. A larger project may create a digital project website or exhibition or using crowdsourcing tools to generate metadata for an archival collection. Large-scale projects in the digital humanities may utilize statistical programming languages to analyze massive datasets of literary texts or historical data to explore literary or historical analysis at scale.
We can assist you in locating and working with materials in HathiTrust, as well as the digital collections available through the Library catalog. You can find a list of subscription and open-source resources available for text mining in our research guide. In addition, the Gale Digital Scholar Lab and JSTOR's pilot Constellate platform have built-in tools for conducting text analysis on their content and web-based programming environments and training materials to get started.
If you are looking to learn more about digital humanities, we recommend the following websites:
- The Programming Historian : Peer-reviewed and novice to expert tutorials on a variety of tools common in digital humanities
- The Digital Humanities Literacy Guidebook: Index of topics and links to resources across the digital humanities spectrum.