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ARL Digital Scholarship Institute: Part 2

It’s hard to believe that two months have passed since the inaugural Association of Research Libraries’ (ARL) Digital Scholarship Institute hosted at Boston College. In the previous post, you can read Sarah Melton’s overview of the goals of the Institute, and takeaways from the keynote by Jennifer Vinopal, Associate Director for Information Technology at The Ohio State University Libraries, and an opening workshop with Alex Gil, Digital Scholarship Coordinator at Columbia University Libraries. The ARL Digital Scholarship Institute was developed by a group of individuals from five institutions brought together by ARL in October 2016 to support one of the primary goals of the ARL Academy  to foster the development of an agile, diverse and highly-motivated workforce as well as the inspiring leadership necessary to meet present and future challenges.”

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T.E.A. Photography, Submerged Montreal.


Will you be at the 2017 Digital Humanities conference in Montréal? So will we!

Sarah Melton will be presenting a poster on the ARL Digital Scholarship Institute along with colleagues from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of Indiana, the University of Rochester, and the University of California San Diego. The poster will detail the Institute’s background and curriculum, as well as an assessment of the program and the proposed next steps.

Anna Kijas, Senior Digital Scholarship Librarian, will be presenting about the Burns Antiphoner, a digital scholarship project developed at Boston College as part of a panel, “High-resolution musicology: Capturing and encoding source detail for medieval music.”

View of manuscript and data

Burns Antiphoner Project

In her presentation, she will discuss the development, workflow, and future directions for this project, which features over 1500 textual and musical incipits, as well as liturgical data from the manuscript in a searchable database. This interactive project enables users to view high-resolution images side-by-side with incipits and data, conduct searches on the data and notation, and learn about the liturgical and musical practices associated with the antiphoner and Franciscan order.

Stop by and say hi to #BCDigSchol!

Header image: T.E.A. Photography, “Submerged Montreal.” CC-BY-NC-ND.

Keyboard Cat by Cassandra Leigh Gotto. CC-BY-NC.

ARL Digital Scholarship Institute

Boston College Libraries’ Digital Scholarship Group recently helped organize and facilitate the Association of Research Libraries’ inaugural Digital Scholarship Institute, held from June 5–9 at Boston College’s Connors Center. Over the next few weeks on the blog, we’ll be reflecting on our experiences at the Institute and what we learned about digital scholarship pedagogy.

The Institute’s 28 participants were selected by application and came from libraries across Canada and the US. The program began with a keynote by Jennifer Vinopal and an introduction to digital scholarship workshop with Alex Gil. Over the course of the week, participants learned about major methodologies and topics in digital scholarship, including data visualization, textual analysis, and multimodal publishing.

BC's Chelcie Rowell and Sarah Melton are passionate about collaboration...and lobster.

At the DSI clambake, BC’s Chelcie Rowell and Sarah Melton are passionate about collaboration…and lobster.

The goal of the Institute was not to settle on a definition of digital scholarship. (In fact, we resisted any easy conceptualizations—I’m partial to Gil’s exercise that asked participants to decide which projects “counted” as digital scholarship, demonstrating that the term can be multivalent.) Nor was the intention to run through an exhaustive list of tools that one might use in a project. Rather, we were interested in building a cohort of digital scholarship library practitioners who could evaluate digital methodologies and tools, draw on their existing skillsets, and identify partners for future collaboration. In other words, we wanted to model a culture of digital scholarship, not just host a week of tech-for-tech’s-sake.

Here at Boston College Libraries, our Digital Scholarship Group has taken the precepts to heart. Our upcoming Digital Scholarship Incubator is modeled on principles of community building. We’re excited to incorporate the lessons we learned at the Institute into our programming and plans for this upcoming academic year. We’ll be updating our events page soon with our fall programming—we hope to see you there!

You can learn more about the Institute and see our course materials on the Institute’s GitHub repo.

Cover image: Cassandra Leigh Gotto, Keyboard Cat. CC-BY-NC.