History 427: History of the Information Age

HIST 427: Introduction

Hello! This semester I am taking my first senior seminar in the History Department, HIST 427: History of the Information Age. One aspect of this course involves using our domains to answer prompts and post updates to the class. Posts for this course are categorized by “HIST 427: History of the Information Age” in the sidebar, and are tagged “HIST427.”

Prompt: Introduce yourself and explain what interests you about the History of the Information Age. Include one assignment from a past iteration of the class that you like. Include a piece of advice from a former student that you plan on using.

About Me

Hello! My name is Glynnis Farleigh and I am a junior History Major and Digital Studies Minor. I am also in the Secondary Education program, seeking a Social Studies Endorsement, as I hope to teach middle school!

As mentioned above, this is my first senior seminar. I am generally interested in social history and have taken courses in American and British history. My favorite topics to study include both the role of women and death and mourning culture.

Last semester, I completed DGST 101: Introduction to Digital Studies. I had not heard of Digital Studies until my sophomore year, where my education advisor suggested that I pick up the minor in order to bolster and add depth to my course load.

So far, I am enjoying the minor as I enjoy both using new technologies and tools, as well as understanding why others use them. I have always enjoyed art and design, so one of my favorite aspects of the minor is leanring how to incorporate these interests into my academics and future career.

What Interests Me About History of the Information Age?

I chose to take History of the Information Age for two reasons. The most obvious of those reasons is the fact that the course fulfills both requirements in my major and minor. But more importantly, I was especially interested in taking a course with Dr. McClurken after having viewed presentations from his students in Adventures in Digital History. I recall seeing projects in which students researched and digitized aspects of local history, and I liked the idea of taking an applied, meaningful history course that allows for creativity.

While I cannot yet point to a specific topic that I would like to research, I am interested in a few areas:

  • Incorporating the use of my domain or a class domain in projects
  • Incorporating UMW or Fredericksburg history into our project
  • Learning how to use new digital technologies (For example, on the first day of class, we installed hypothes.is, a tool used for annotating websites)
  • Brainstorming as to how to incorporate both the study of digital technologies and information and the use of digital technologies into a future classroom

Looking to the Past: HIST 427 Projects to Consider

Finally, I have glanced both past assignments and pieces of advice from the 2011 and 2014 iterations of HIST 427.

I am most interested in engaging in Option “D – create an infograph with information about an early system of communication,” as I enjoy both the creative and organizational aspect of making visuals. I would be happy displaying the infograph on my domain, a class domain, or publically at UMW. The first mediums that come to mind when thinking of infographs are Timeline.js and Canva, but I am open to learning about other tools!

On the contrary, I would like to note that I am least interested in live tweeting, as I find that tweets are vague and don’t age well.

Concerning specific areas to research, I would be interested in learning about the history of modern advertising, early computers, or citations, but am open to exploring new things as the semester progresses.

The piece of advice that appears most relevant is:

  • “Be realistic about the assignments you create. You will have to actually do them. The more specific you can be about the details, the better your project is likely to turn out.”

It is easy to come up with an interesting idea for a project, but it is harder to plan and execute that project within a specific time frame, all while ensuring that the work you do gives said project justice. I believe that this piece of advice will be most useful this semester!

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