What happens when digital tools and literature meet? What can the “digital turn” in literary studies help us to understand about language, aesthetics, truth, fiction, media, and digital literacy? English 250 is an introductory course to Digital Humanities, or DH—a field that investigates the ways that digital platforms and tools affect, among other things, what we read and how we read. In this course, you’ll have opportunities to learn how to use and study DH tools and methods. Along the way, we’ll consider fiction’s investments in what we take to be real, true, fictional, false, fake, and factual. This course will have particular appeal for those interested in digital publishing, podcasts, data science, distant/close reading, and literary studies. Knowledge of coding languages or digital tools is not required. However, the course does require a willingness to experiment with and analyze the uses of digital tools, and an interest in considering how and why fictions are so well poised to test our understanding of truth and fiction. ENG 250 is a prerequisite for ENG 470, the Technologies and Texts Capstone.
Arts & Letters (A&L) courses create meaningful opportunities for students to engage actively in the modes of inquiry that define a discipline. Courses are broad in scope and demonstrably liberal in nature (that is, courses that promote open inquiry from a variety of perspectives). Though some courses may focus on specialized subjects or approaches, there will be a substantial course content locating that subject in the broader context of the major issues of the discipline. Qualifying courses will not focus on teaching basic skills but will require the application or engagement of those skills through analysis and interpretation.
Lower-division Elective courses allow students to choose (or “elect”) courses or faculty specific to their own developing interests, enabling them thereby to shape their own educational experience. Major II students can also use one lower-division elective to fulfill the Writing Requirement with ENG 209 The Craft of the Sentence.
English Minor courses offer students centuries of cultural experience and representation in poetry, prose, drama, film, TV, new media, and folk artifacts. The English minor can focus and extend the values of a liberal arts education, while also providing extensive training in writing, speaking, and critical thinking.
Digital Humanities Minor courses integrate literary study with the use of digital tools and technologies. Students in the minor learn how to make interpretive arguments by building digital archives and maps, interacting with digital games, using web-based publishing platforms, and visualizing data. The minor pays particular attention to the culture of creation in literary and cultural analysis.