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Digital Studies

Digital Studies Certificate logo

Coding with Creativity and Analysis with Design: an Interdisciplinary Program.

This certificate program combines digital media design, coding for the web, and applied research in the digital humanities. In pursuing the certificate, students will learn to make optimal design decisions for effective display on the multiple platforms and devices that access the World Wide Web. Students will design digital art and narrative, build digital research tools for public access, and gain certification in computer skills documented on their diplomas. They will also have opportunities to participate as interns and assistants with Pitt-Greensburg's Center for the Digital Text.

The coursework for the certificate is easily combined with majors in Visual and Performing Arts, English Literature, Communication, Creative and Professional Writing, and History, as well as Information Technology and Information Systems, and many others. There are no extra costs for pursuing this certificate, and many of the courses also fulfill general education requirements toward graduation. To complete the certificate students create a digital portfolio of projects to share evidence of their digital skills with potential employers and graduate programs.

Students complete six courses (18 credits): two core courses and four other elective classes. The two core courses involve experience in both digital research and digital presentation on the web. The electives are divided into "R" (digital research) and "P" ("project presentation") courses, and students must take at least one of each kind. The two other courses may be any from the lists below, or another course subject to approval by the faculty committee supervising Digital Studies. (To be approved by the committee, the main projects for the course must combine the learning and application of computing technology with another discipline.)

Core Courses

All students who pursue the certificate must take the following:

COMMRC 1012 / ENGWRT 1012 Digital Storytelling I        digital narrative projects: blogs, podcasts, photo and sound essays

and either one of the following two:

HUMAN 1030 / SOCSCI 1031 Coding and Digital Archives

intro to coding and markup (XML and related), 
design and publish digital archives and visuals on the web

HUMAN 1050 / SOCSCI 1051

Coding and Data Visualization

alternative intro to coding and markup (XML and related), 
data extraction and analysis, graphs, geographic and image mapping

Elective Courses

Students choose at least one course marked "R," at least one marked "P," and any other two from either the core or elective list:

COMMRC 1022 / ENGWRT 1022 Digital Storytelling II P advanced-level, follow-up course to Digital Storytelling 1, involves in-depth personal digital narrative or immersion project. Prereq: COMMRC 1012 / ENGWRT 1012
COMMRC 0570 Independent Film P digital video production in the library's digital media lab
COMMRC 1020 Digital Media Studies P critical study and building of digital media with existing web-based tools
COMMRC 1152 Digital and Professional Communication   study digital communication and ethical issues in professional contexts, including the use of e-mail and digital personae
CS 0134 Web Site Design and Development P build and maintain a simple to moderately complex web site, using current standard Web page language (XHTML and CSS) and the aid of an internet editor
ENGLIT 0066 Introduction to Social Literature R or P beginning in Spring 2019, a sequence of digital project assignments involves collecting research data in tabular formats to plot timelines, maps, and network diagrams that visualize patterns in literature addressing social issues.
ENGLIT 0660 Literary Fame R series of assignments involves research and analysis of references to writers and literary works in full-text electronic databases
ENGLIT 0626 Science Fiction R or P beginning in Fall 2017, coursework involves researched annotation and writing critically and/or creatively in a digital media environment
ENGLIT 1175 Nineteenth-Century British Literature R or P complete a series of scaffolded digital assignments for researching and annotating poetry on the web
ENGLIT 1215 Pre-Twentieth-Century American Literature R beginning in Spring 2017, sequence of assignments to create a digital timeline and map of the course materials, and conduct research through digital annotation tools
ENGLIT 1241 Jane Austen: Books and Film R major project involves research in full-text electronic databases of archives of nineteenth-century newspapers and journals to review and trace language associated with Jane Austen's novels.
ENGLIT 1552 History of the English Language R major project involves research in full-text electronic databases of publications from the fifteenth century to the present and an introduction to OCR transcription
ENGLIT 1572 Fantasy and Romance R beginning in Fall 2016, the course offers an immersive experience and research on virtual worlds and avatars associated with epic fantasy.
ENGWRT 1331 Magazine 1 P combine digital storytelling techniques with traditional prose: photo essays, illustrations, video or audio supplements accompany written stories
ENGWRT 1415 Topics in Nonfiction: Travel Writing P travel writing with digital storytelling techniques (photo essays, illustrations, video or audio supplements)
HIST 1560 History of Women in Latin America R sequence of assignments that apply digital tools to research and annotate themes such as motherhood, feminism, human rights, and politics of the history of women in Latin America
INFSCI ____ Information Literacy R introduction to intelligent information retrieval from the Web and databases
MATH 1001 Mathematical Computing R course uses Mathematica to introduce the various concepts of elementary programming such as conditional statements, loops, and recursion.
MUSIC / SOC 1270 Music, Culture, and Technology R study the cultural impact of digital music with music information retrieval science: requires learning to use MIRS datasets (SALAMI)
SA 0050 Introduction to 2D and 3D Modelling R or P learn to model and build digital objects in two and three dimensions, with applications for architecture of buildings and landscapes, interior design, urban planning, 3D printing, game design, stage props, sets, and exhibits


Committee for Digital Studies