Start date: Jan 1, 2015,
End date: Jun 30, 2017
The DARIAH-RC Strategic Partnership presents a unique new approach to curriculum development: an international consortium consisting of 7 institutions from 7 European countries will join forces to establish an open source, freely-available modular reference curriculum and key benchmarking criteria in the rapidly expanding field of Digital Humanities along with an extensible collection of high-quality, internationally-vetted multilingual training materials.
While there may be many millions of digital objects available on the World Wide Web, the integration and exploitation of these objects in educational settings, using new research methodologies to pose and answer new research questions about them, is still embryonic. There are only a handful of HEIs offering degrees in these new methods, theories, and tools throughout the world, most commonly known as Digital Humanities (DH).
Digital Humanities is a fast growing field that brings innovative and cutting-edge ICT methods to the humanities. It is interdisciplinary in nature, spanning not only the various fields of the humanities, but computer science, engineering, information studies, design, and the social sciences. Because of its digital underpinnings, traditional print textbooks, while adequate for teaching theory, are less suitable for teaching methods (including coding, markup, visualization, and modeling) in which there is a strong practice-based component.
Humanities students taught via traditional methods (some dating back as far as the 19th century) are left out of acquiring the skills and digital competencies necessary to participate in the knowledge economy of the 21st century. Digital Humanities bridges that gap by using cutting-edge ICT methods integrated into a humanities curriculum, providing students with transversal digital skills, and as such, provides a valuable route for students to increase digital competencies and skills, to improve their employment prospects, and to provide professional development opportunities for HEI educators.
The deliverables of this project will be freely available online through the infrastructure associated with the European-wide Digital Research Infrastructure for the Arts and Humanities, ensuring its long-term sustainability. It will be designed in such a way that curricula can be localised both for multiple languages and traditions. This will allow learners across Europe to learn in their own language using examples from their own traditions, while providing a methodological template so that instructors can avoid wasteful duplication of effort.
In addition to creating the first-ever European-wide Digital Humanities reference curriculum addressing key competencies and skills necessary for the use of computational methods in the study of the Arts and Humanities, DARIAH-RC will highlight the role of cultural diversity in European education by offering examples of and encouraging further adaptation of training materials to specific linguistic/cultural contexts. In doing so, DARIAH-RC will dispel any notion that the use of ICT methods leads to abstract representations of culturally impoverished outputs. On the contrary, we will show how the use of digital technologies can help us identify, analyse and promote the unique contributions that individual languages and cultures have made to Europe and the world as a whole.
The impact of DARIAH-RC will, however, not only be symbolic. In very practical terms, this strategic partnership will enable the meaningful, project-oriented and policy-relevant exchange of know-how between the participating institutions. In addition, it will raise the profile of Digital Humanities in participating and other countries by bringing an accessible and highly visible educational resource to our primary stakeholder audience: traditional humanities scholars, instructors and students who have not yet made the use of computational methods part of their intellectual portfolio. Moreover, since all our intellectual outputs will be publicly and freely available through an open access portal, other potential stakeholders will be reached: the general public, life-long learners and cultural heritage professionals By embedding the curriculum and training materials in the DARIAH-EU infrastructure, this strategic partnership can guarantee the long-term sustainability of the project outputs beyond the project period.
Without an Erasmus+ grant, it would be impossible to gather, exchange and develop the technological know-how and the multinational pedagogical expertise necessary for lifting this project off the ground. The Erasmus+ framework presents an ideal opportunity for realizing the goals of the DARIAH-RC strategic partnership and for supporting innovative practices in the field of Digital Humanities training and education in Europe.
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