News & Events


Public Digital Humanities Certificate

We are delighted to announce that another group of inspiring students has completed the Public Digital Humanities certificate! Congratulations to Stefan Schöberlein, Rebekah Walker, Claire Szeszycki, and Kara Wentworth, our newest certificate holders!

If you are interested in pursuing a Public Digital Humanities certificate, there is information available on our website or you can contact Matthew Hannah at

Spring 2017 PDH Course Options and Electives

Check out Spring 2017 course options to meet the Visualization requirement as well as elective choices.

Courses for Fall 2017

With fall enrollment already open, following is a list of courses available for the Public Digital Humanities Certificate. As you can see, all required courses are offered Fall 2017, and a small number of electives are pre-approved. If you see a class that you think would help you meet your digital humanities goals, please meet with your departmental advisor or contact Professor Jim Elmborg to discuss.

For further course details please click here.



Public Digital Humanities Capstone Presentations Spring 2017

Fri, 04/28/2017 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm

Becker Communication Studies Building 101

Please join us for the second Public Digital Humanities Capstone Roundtable. University of Iowa graduate students completing the PDH certificate will present their final capstone projects, the culmination of a semester of innovative digital scholarship, and will discuss the role of digital scholarship in the 21st-century university. This year features impressive scholarship as students use digital tools to explore unique insights into culture and literature.

For his certificate capstone project, Stefan Schoeberlein collaborated with the editors of Walt Whitman's journalism to assess the authorship of sets of short newspaper pieces that could have been written by the poet of Leaves of Grass. To this end, Stefan has employed a distant reading method based on a statistical comparison of bootstrapped lists of "most frequent trigrams" (strings of 3 characters) that relies on three distinct measures of distance and uses the plugin "stylo" for the computing language "R." His project promises to unearth new journalism by the famous poet.

Rebekah Walker’s project utilizes geographic information systems (GIS) methods to visualize the spatial association of American Indian populations to public and tribally-controlled libraries in the United States. Using the robust annual public library data available through the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and United States Census Bureau demographic data, she created an interactive web map and accompanying narrative website to contextualize disparities in information access for these populations.

For her capstone project, Kara Wentworth joined the team at the Walt Whitman Archive’s Correspondence Project. Over the semester she has applied her skills with 19th century handwriting and learned the Archive’s standards for XML (according to TEI guidelines) to transcribe and encode letters from Whitman’s “Old Age Correspondence” era. To date she has encoded 21 letters to contribute to the project. In her presentation, she will discuss the unique challenges in encoding and deciphering these hand-written letters.

Claire Szeszycki accessed Iowa Carnegie library data from the University of Iowa CLIP website and transformed this information into a series of maps using Leaflet. Further research and mapping has been done on Indiana and Illinois Carnegie libraries to compare these three similar states and their Carnegie history. Her maps offer functionality in which users can select a Carnegie library to see data about the library.

BH and DH: Book History and Digital Humanities 2017 Conference

Fri, 09/22/2017 (All day) to Sun, 09/24/2017 (All day)

Center for the History of Print and Digital Culture

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Call for Individual Papers and Complete/Partial Panels

Proposals due to by April 15, 2017

Decision Notification by May 15, 2017

Often celebrated and criticized as the next big thing in humanist research and teaching, “the digital humanities” get a lot of press for shaking up the way things are done. But is “dh” a continuation of some of the most “traditional” scholarly work in the humanities: bibliography, textual criticism, and book history? This conference, convened by the Center for the History of Print and Digital Culture at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, aims to study how digital humanities grows out book history, how “bh” and “dh” continue to be mutually informative and generative, and how also they contradict each other.

This conference is an occasion to think broadly and provocatively about fields and formats – to trace these genealogies and debate their meaning, to think about what difference it makes to position the hand written or printed word on a continuum with digital inscription rather than insisting the latter is a clean break from the former, and to broaden views about whose labor – intellectual and physical – makes all kinds of reading, writing, and scholarship possible.

The organizers welcome proposals for papers, entire panels, partial panels (to be filled in with individual paper submissions), posters, or other forms of presentation from scholars and practitioners in all fields that have claim to these questions: literature, history, religious studies, librarianship, information studies, area and ethnic studies, computer science, feminist, gender, and sexuality studies, digital studies, library and information science, art history, preservation, forensics, curation, archival practice, and more.

Organizers: Jonathan Senchyne, Heather Wacha, Mark Vareschi

Questions to:

Mapping Time with Timemapper

Thu, 12/08/2016 - 3:00pm to 4:45pm

Main Library 1015 A

Timelines are important components of humanities education and research. Whether charting the transmission of knowledge or the march of history, timelines allow us to visualize vast periods of time into easy-to-read infographics. With this workshop, we will create our own timeline visualizations using Timemapper, a free and accessible timeline software. The skills you learn here will allow you to assign your students new explorations into the humanities and social sciences.

Free but registration requested. No technical expertise required.

Discussion of the Graduate Certificate in Public Digital Humanities

Fri, 10/21/2016 - 2:30pm

3082 LIB

Prof. Jim Elmborg will be holding a meeting for those students currently enrolled in or interested in the PDH certificate. This meeting will be informal and is intended to address questions about admission, course offerings, and the capstone.

If you cannot attend the meeting, but have questions or concerns you’d like to discuss, you can email Prof. Jim Elmborg and schedule a time to talk. You can also pass your questions along via students who might be attending.

Rare Books and Manuscripts Section Digital Special Collections DG at ALA Midwinter 2017

Mon, 10/31/2016 (All day)

The Digital Special Collections Discussion Group is seeking proposals for short presentations of 7-12 minutes that highlight case studies, success stories, and failures on the topic: "Using Digital Humanities Tools in/for Special Collections."

Possible ideas include: tools in the context of projects evaluating Special Collections for use within the Library, tools used in class visits and/or scholarly collaborations with Special Collections, or research projects using Special Collections.

Digital Humanities tools may include (but are not limited to): Neo4j, Omeka, OpenRefine, Palladio, Scalar, Tableau, Voyant, Zotero, topic modeling tools, open graph visualizations, etc.

The Digital Special Collections Discussion Group meeting will take place on Sunday, January 22, 8:30am-10:00am. Meeting location TBA.

Proposals should be submitted using this form, and are due by the end of the day on October 31, 2016.

Global Digital Humanities Symposium

Thu, 03/16/2017 (All day) to Fri, 03/17/2017 (All day)

Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan

Find information and updates at

Free and open to the public. CFP and further details will be forthcoming in the next few weeks.

This day and a half symposium looks to continue in the critical and global spirit of examining digital humanities established at the inaugural Global DH Symposium in April 2016 (find out more at

Collaboration-First: New Pathways for Scholarly Production

Fri, 09/16/2016 - 10:30am to 12:00pm

117 UCC, International Program's Commons

All are welcome—no registration required

“Collaboration” has been a byword of digital scholarship very nearly since its inception. The complexity of producing digital works requires scholars to work closely with designers, developers, digital librarians, and editors. Often, however, collaboration happens fairly late in the research and publication process, well after the scholar’s initial idea for the project, usually after she has completed the bulk of her research, and sometimes even after she has decided on the final format for the research, whether that’s a book, an article, an Omeka instance, or a Scalar interactive. All too often, collaborators are brought on board merely to implement scholarly projects, not imagine them. Greenhouse Studios: Scholarly Communication Design at the University of Connecticut aims to change this status-quo. A transdisciplinary collective, Greenhouse Studios reframes the practices, pathways and products of scholarly communications through inquiry-driven, “collaboration-first” approaches to the creation and expression of knowledge. With start-up funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Greenhouse Studios draws on art and design processes and the speaker’s prior experiments in radical collaboration to solve the problems and explore the opportunities of scholarship in the “digital age.” This talk will present the history and meanings behind this rethinking of scholarly communications and explore some directions for future research.

Workshop: Managing Collaborative Humanities Projects: Lessons from DH - REGISTRATION REQUIRED

Fri, 09/16/2016 - 2:30pm to 4:00pm

Executive Boardroom, 2nd floor 2390 UCC

Registration required—limited to 20 participants

“Managing Collaborative Humanities Projects: 10 Lessons from Digital Humanities”
Drawing on the instructor’s 15 years of digital humanities practice, this workshop will consider both the practical, day-to-day work and the intangible aspects of managing collaborative projects and organizations. Pragmatic lessons will include picking projects, building partnerships and engaging stakeholders, attracting funding, budgeting and staffing, setting milestones and meeting deliverables, managing staff, publicity and marketing, user support, sustainability, and the range of tools available to support this work. The workshop will also consider several harder to pin down, but no less important, aspects of management, including communication, decision making, and leadership.

Videogame Shakespeare: "Play the Knave"

Wed, 09/07/2016 - 4:00pm to 5:30pm

University of Iowa Main Library
125 West Washington Street
Iowa City, Iowa
Library Commons

Videogame Shakespeare: “Play the Knave,” sponsored by the Digital Bridges team at the Obermann Center for Advanced Studies. Free and open to the public, Professor Gina Bloom (English Dept., UC Davis) and her collaborators created the Play the Knave video game to draw audiences of all ages into the world of Shakespeare’s play. The game will be installed at the University of Iowa Library Commons. Public participants are welcome to become avatars and play the game in person. Professor Bloom will also give a public lecture that speaks to the general public, high and middle school teachers, and college instructors. The talk discusses opportunities for humanities scholars and teachers to integrate the humanities into STEAM initiatives, offering Play the Knave as a successful case study. is external) For other Shakespeare events:

Shakespeare at Iowa

Mon, 08/29/2016 - 10:00am to Sun, 09/25/2016 - 5:00pm

University of Iowa Main Library
125 West Washington Street
Iowa City, IA

Join the Shakespeare at Iowa celebration and exhibit with Shakespeare's First Folio, a rare book of all Shakespeare's plays, printed in 1623. Please note the exhibit end hour may change.