What is Digital Scholarship?

"Digital scholarship is the use of digital evidence, methods of inquiry, research, publication and preservation to achieve scholarly and research goals.[1] Digital scholarship can encompass both scholarly communication using digital media and research on digital media. An important aspect of digital scholarship is the effort to establish digital media and social media as credible, professional and legitimate means of research and communication.[2] Digital scholarship has a close association with digital humanities, though the relationship between these terms is unclear." -Wikipedia

INSTRUCTIONS: Enter your responses to the questions below. This is most easily done by moving your cursor to the end of the last item and pressing RETURN to create a new bullet point. Please include URLs whenever you can (full URLs will automatically be turned into hyperlinks; please type them out rather than using the linking tools in the toolbar).

Please "sign" your contributions by marking with the code of 4 tildes (~) in a row so that we can follow up with you if we need additional information or leads to examples- this produces a signature when the page is updated, like this: - gordon gordon Jul 21, 2016

(1) How might this technology be relevant to the educational sector you know best?

Since the term 'research based teaching' nowadays means letting the students learn the methods of our research fields and work with/on the basis of them (and not just teaching based on research, conducted by researchers, etc.) we - the teachers - must have a high literacy within this field and be forerunners. Banal - yes, but none the less most important. Furthermore we should be able to use the digital media in our teaching to a much larger extent than is the case right now (at least in my world). - ole ole Aug 10, 2016
  • 'research-based teaching' can also mean using research to lead the concepts/content of the teaching. Digital technologies (DTs) can make the whole field of research less cumbersome and provide reach to participants who might not otherwise be reachable. It can also support new forms of data (think video, images, blog posts...). The kick is developing our own levels of proficiency with the technologies which seem to change every five minutes, and being able to pay rather large sums for software that can help analyse digital data. The ThesisWhisperer site for example, provides inspiration, advice and guidance to doctoral and masters students globally (https://thesiswhisperer.com/). This could not have existed 10 years ago. n.wright- n.wright n.wright Aug 22, 2016 I also wrote an article published in 2010 that continues to be cited. (Wright, N. (2010). Twittering in teacher education: reflecting on practicum experiences. Open Learning: The Journal of Open and Distance Learning, 25(3), 259-265.) It was about using Twitter as a research tool - could it support, precipitate or provoke reflective thinking practices among initial teacher education graduates on practicum? The tweets themselves were relatively straightforward to archive and analyse. Being able to collaborate via digital technologies also makes it easy to connect with people in far-flung places. n.wright- n.wright n.wright Aug 22, 2016
  • There are all sorts of digital scholarship, from, videos for courses, online course creation, open publishing... and more. Yet many fail to be recognized as part of scholarship. Changing recognition of faculty and leadership and promotion and tenure or continuing contract guidelines is imperative in order to ensure digital scholarship is recognized for all it is being used. (- rneuron rneuron Sep 25, 2016)

(2) What themes are missing from the above description that you think are important?

  • The problem with both digital scholarship and digital humanities is that they imply something new and different. While this is critical for funding opportunities ("let's find someone to give us money to do 'digital' scholarship"), it ignores the fact that most scholarship in the humanities and other fields is already digital in how it is produced. Exactly (- rneuron rneuron Sep 25, 2016) The challenge, therefore, as with the development of other new areas of scholarship, is simply to help the scholarly community understand that the methods and the subject matter may be new, but the academic rigor is not. Studying the sociology of online gamers, for example, is still valid sociological inquiry, but the subjects are a newly defined group and the tools to study them may require development. - anthony.helm anthony.helm Aug 29, 2016
  • There is an ongoing problem with regards to the adoption, or not, of "digital" technologies - the reluctance of academics to use "new fangled" ways of delivering their teaching, falling back upon the methodologies and tools used by the people who taught them, often being their default option. Academic rigor is vital - academic rigor mortis is the problem. - damian.mcdonald damian.mcdonald Sep 16, 2016
  • one key issue is that DS needs to be embedded into Curriculum Design, it's not an add-on, it needs to be embedded. The tricky issue is that we need academics and support staff to have the requisite skills to really engage with DS. This is a mjor challenge as we often assume the all staff have the right skills. - nwitt nwitt Oct 2, 2016

(3) What do you see as the potential impact of this technology on higher education?

  • Digital scholarship is all about opportunity (and opportunity costs!). In some fields, it has seemed like the only way to get a PhD was to define a level of specificity to inquiry such that there couldn't possibly be any one else doing work on the topic, even if broader application of the research outcomes was non-existent ("Gendering the use of third-person passive voice in illuminated French translations of Homer's 'The Illiad,'" or some such silliness). Now, there are opportunities both to revisit broader themes but with new tools (applications of text mining on the works of Shakespeare, for example) and to apply established tools for academic inquiry to new populations or a new corpus of material (online populations or the tweets of a politician). Digital scholarship is nothing if not a re-energizing of academia for those who can see the possibilities and who are willing and able to make others come around to appreciate the effort. - anthony.helm anthony.helm Aug 29, 2016 A very important point! Actually, this discussion is parallel to the one that ran last year and the year before: that HE teachers has to understand the potential of the technology in their teaching and be much more technology literate.- ole ole Aug 30, 2016 - helga helga Sep 19, 2016(- rneuron rneuron Sep 25, 2016) and I would add be recognized when they are. (- rneuron rneuron Sep 25, 2016)
  • I believe we have a responsibility, if not a duty, to use all of the tools and methodologies at our disposal to ensure we meet the needs of our scholars. Various technologies digital or otherwise, may or may not improve upon existing ways of doing things, but to simply reject them out of hand seems curiously at odds with the academic philosophy of evidence-based conclusions based on theoretical and/or practical enquiry. - damian.mcdonald damian.mcdonald Sep 16, 2016

(4) Do you have or know of a project working in this area?

Please share information about related projects in our Horizon Project Sharing Form.