Loyola's M.A. in Digital Humanities is a 30-hour program, for both full-time and part-time students (full time enrollment requires a minimum of 9 hours/semester), with two converging tracks, one track designed for students with a background in computer science and one track designed for students with a background in the humanities or other fields. The following courses are required of both tracks:
1. DIGH 400: Introduction to Digital Humanities Research. 3 hrs.
This course is designed to introduce students to work in a variety of humanities disciplines that involve or require computer assistance in research or the presentation of research. This includes archiving, digitizing, editing, analyzing, interface and web design, and presentation skills. This course will emphasize the needs and methods of a range of humanities disciplines, not computing solutions or skills per se, but it will introduce students to technical matters such as markup and digital analysis. It will also take up broad social and ethical questions surrounding media and contemporary culture, including accuracy of evidence, intellectual property, and open access to knowledge.
2. ENGL 413: Textual Criticism. 3 hrs.
An introduction to major textual theories and their history. Topics may include such issues as analytic and descriptive bibliography, theories of copy-text, theoretical and practical issues in editing, and forms of textuality, including manuscript, print, and digital forms. The editorial and archival needs of various humanities disciplines will be addressed, including history, theology, law, and literature, along with issues related to digital texts and online modes of publication. (Alternatives to this requirement, subject to approval by the CTSDH, include courses in Book History, for example.)
3. COMP 436: Markup Languages: Electronic Editions. 3 hrs.
This course is concerned with XML and its various component frameworks. The core frameworks to be covered include Document Object Model (DOM), Simple API for XML processing (SAX), the XML Path language (XPath), and XSLT. A number of real-world XML languages will be explored: Math Markup Language
(MathML), Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG), and Ant Build Files (to name a few). The course concludes with a discussion of XML and Network Services (e.g. SOAP and XML/ RPC). Visiting speakers and affiliated researchers from various disciplines may help the class contextualize the learning of markup languages, TEI/DocBook, as well as XML, XSLT, RDF, etc.
4. COMP 441: Human-Computer-Interface Design. 3 hrs.
This course studies the interaction between humans and computer-based systems. The course will provide students with the methods for evaluating, designing, and developing better interfaces between humans and systems. Students will acquire an awareness of different design and evaluation methods as well as practical, effective, and cost-conscience methods for improving systems and their interfaces.
5. DIGH 402: DH Design and Programming. 3hrs.
This course, taught by digital humanities faculty, introduces students of the MA in Digital Humanities program to project design and computer programming. It focuses on core programming skills, built upon PHP foundations introduced in DIGH 401, development patterns and methods, and practical skills for the development and management of a digital humanities framework and project. Students gain practical experience with coding, design, and version management with the final goal of publishing a working framework for project publication and development. Students are given the opportunity to present and demonstrate their frameworks and project as part of the final course assessment. The practical experience is complemented by extensive reading in instructional design and e-learning theory and practice.
6. DIGH 500/595: Digital Humanities Project. 6 hrs. (2 semesters)
Co-supervised by a Digital Humanities faculty specialist and a humanities or computer science faculty member, this capstone course will pull together the curriculum by requiring the student to produce and publish online an innovative electronic project of their own design. Depending on student interests and faculty expertise, options may range from writing a conventional research essay in digitally publishable form, to creating a sample electronic edition and writing a rationale to support it, to building and explaining a media database or digital tool that demonstrates important theoretical and practical points in digital humanities work. The student will be required in each case to specify real-world institutional contexts within which the work would make a contribution to the digital humanities. Although each individual will be responsible for her or his own thesis research in the role of principal investigator, Collaborative research, encoding, and design will be encouraged. Assessment will be made jointly by the two faculty supervisors. The 6-hour course sequence is designed to be distributed over two consecutive semesters in order to allow for long-term, in-depth development of projects in directed independent study. Students will register for DH 595 during the first semester, a no-credit thesis supervision course in which the student will work with the faculty advisor to get the project designed and underway. Then, during the second semester, the student will sign up for DH 500, a 6-credit course, in order to complete the thesis.
subtotal: 21 hours
Additionally, students in the humanities track would take:
DIGH 401: Introduction to Computing. 3 hrs.
This course, to be taught by Computer Science faculty and Digital Humanities faculty, combines historical study with a hands-on analytical approach to computers and their role in academic research, publishing, libraries, and the arts. Topics will include the structure of computers, the relation of software and hardware, text and image markup and publishing, database theory and design, modeling and visualization, text analytics, procedural logic and the basic concepts of programming, artificial intelligence, and the social, ethical, and intellectual contexts for computing applications in the 20th and 21st centuries--from the mainframe era to the Internet. Hands-on experience with basic coding will be an integral part of instruction and the requirements will include either a practical computing project or a research paper on issues in the history and contexts of computing.
And students in the computer-science track would take:
One approved graduate-level subject course in the humanities or social sciences. 3 hrs.
The specific course would be approved by digital humanities faculty based on the background and needs of the student, so, for example, a student in the Computer Science track but working toward a career in libraries might be approved to take History 482: Archives and Records Management. Another student preparing to work work in communications might take English 415: Media and Society.
subtotal: 24 hours
Additional electives (specific courses to be chosen under advisement). 6 hrs.
These electives are required for both humanities and computer science tracks. Eligible courses currently approved as electives for the M.A. are: Computer Science 417 (Social and Ethical Issues in Computing) English 415 (Media and Culture) History 479/806 (Public History Media) History 482 (Archives and Records Management). Additional courses may be approved in any given year. Courses that could count as electives in a given student's program, depending on offerings in a given year and the specific course content, might include Theology graduate courses in biblical texts, for example, or a graduate History seminar focused on particular archival materials germane to the student's course of study.
total M.A. program: 30 hrs.
Students will receive grades for each individual course, assessed for their mastery of the required course goals and objectives. A passing grade in each course will be required in order for the course to count towards the degree and a 3.0 average must be maintained overall. Each student will produce an electronic thesis under the direction of an advisor; the thesis will demonstrate knowledge and skills gained in coursework and will address one or more key problems in digital humanities research or applications. The thesis will be graded as part of the overall GPA. The professional M.A. degree will be granted based on that GPA, including evaluation of the directed thesis.