Deciding to go digital
It can be a hard decision to stray from producing more traditional scholarship like a paper or a book; however, creating digital-born scholarship is accepted from faculty seeking promotion as well as undergraduate and graduate students wishing to create digital senior and exit projects.
Exploring platforms and tools
There are a variety of existing digital projects that provide examples of how you can use different tools when deciding how to present your scholarship. Exploring these projects and tools will help you visualize a more concrete plan for executing your project, help rule out tools that are obviously not the right fit, and discover what you might need for further research. A good place to begin your exploration is our Tools & Tutorials page.
IRIS can provide assistance in grant writing as well as issue a letter of support regarding equipment and space for your digital project. Additionally, we can provide suggestions as to who might serve as good partners for your project. If you don’t know where to start, we can help you explore different avenues of funding.
If your students will be working in the IRIS throughout the course of your project, they must complete training sessions on the equipment they will be using. Upon completion of training, they will be asked to sign our Terms & Conditions and schedule their work times on our calendar.
Something people often fail to consider when creating a digital project is the long term goals and objectives. While once a book or paper is published it is finished, digital-born scholarship has the potential for constant growth and change. From the beginning of your process, keep in mind that you will need a destination for your project and plan for its upkeep.
IRIS and your digital project
Make an appointment to discuss your digital project and learn how IRIS can support you through the process of creating it. Let us know the basic premise of your project and tell us a few times during the week you are usually available, and we will get back to you as soon as we can!
Questions to consider
While in the beginning stages of brainstorming your digital project, there are many things to take into consideration…
In regard to platform…
- How often will software updates need to be applied? Who will be responsible for applying updates?
- How often will new content be added and who will be in charge of doing it? What skills will they need?
- Digital Humanities at Berkeley has an excellent resource guide to help answer these questions: http://digitalhumanities.berkeley.edu/resources/choosing-platform-your-project-website
In regard to audience…
- Who do you want your project to reach?
- What is your intended impact?
- What will your project enable people to do?
In regard to sustainability…
- How will this make use of existing campus resources?
- Will you use open source software?
- Does it connect to or contribute to other projects in the field?
- Does it require extensive custom programming?
- What is the required project staff?
- How long do you expect to contribute to this project?
- What do you want to happen to it when you finish?
Other things to keep in mind…
- How much new content will be uploaded and how often?
- How will you handle project promotion and outreach?
- Who will be responsible for project management?
- What methods will you use to ensure quality control?
- In what way will your project maintain cultural awareness and/or handle sensitive content?
- How will you protect the rights of contributors and enforce the ethical use of content?
- How will you archive content in addition to what is on the website?
- What methods will you use for cataloging content on the website?
- Are you collaborating solely within SIUE or will you also be working with other institutions/individuals?
The consultation meeting
At our meeting, we will complete the following form together:
Creating instances of Omeka and WordPress
The IRIS Center can now issue instances of Omeka and WordPress to faculty, staff, and students working on digital projects through the IRIS Center. Following a consultation appointment and the determination of platforms needed for your project, you can submit a request to IRIS staff. Please let us know your eID, email address, and what project name you would like to be included in the url.