Evaluate THATCamp SoCal 2012

Please tell us what you thought of THATCamp SoCal by filling out the anonymous survey at Only two fields required: which THATCamp you went to and how useful you rate it on a scale of 1-5, though there’s also plenty of space for more in-depth comments.

If you like, you can read evaluations from other THATCamps at

Thanks, all!

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Folder for Google Docs

If you created a Google Doc with collaborative notes on a session, please share it with . I’ll add them to the public folder at Thanks!

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Session on Local DH collaboration (live-blogging)

Claremont received a grant for local DH collaboration:

Meeting at Oxy to Welcome Bard College to DH

Building on DHSoCal website out of the very first THATCamp SoCal (outdated profiles and content–needs to be updated)

Could there be a central meeting space?  Would it be possible to create a mobile lab?  Something like a foodtruck that could be setup in different places?

What we need more than equipment is travel grants (and legitimate academic funders so we can take time off of our academic positions to do DH work)

Sharing a twitter account to broadcast local events occurring on our campuses (maybe Daniel will take this on)

In addition to THATCamp, host another collaboration that could be like a summer institute and possibly garner NEH grants.

How about a SoCal Research Slam along the lines of what’s been done at UCSB for the past 5 years?

  • What about the model of bringing in judges from other campuses to evaluate student projects? as an example of collaboration–possible local chapters of 4Humanities?

  • Do a documentary about what DH’ers are doing in SoCal (as support for a regional hub and also to explain to our colleagues what we do in DH)
  • At CSUN 4Humanities is a student organization, sponsored by the Center for the Digital Humanities
  • Use students from other institutions as labor for DH projects?  (as interns, perhaps?)

Monthly Google Hangouts, perhaps?  To get to know each other and our projects and to collaborate regularly.

First meeting: Friday Oct 12, 11am.  Liz Losh (@lizlosh) will organize the event.  Send her a note if you want to join in the call.

Scott Kleinman and Daniel Chamberlain will setup the regional twitter account (@DHSoCal)


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Session Notes: Text Mining Session 2 w/ Scott Kleinman

Notes we put together from the 2nd Text Mining Workshop, led by Scott Kleinman. Feel free to add and edit.

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Session on Academic Technology (live-blogging)

How do we help faculty become more tech-savvy?


  • going into the departments to do trainings (instead of campus-wide trainings)
  • sending out emails via Faculty Development Center (but do faculty even look at all of their emails anymore?)

The biggest hurdle is communication, such as having problems getting approval to post on the Faculty Portal

  • doing infomercial videos for technology services (Colleen will post some links to the ASU’s Academic Minute), perhaps posting these to departmental facebook page

To reach faculty, address their specific needs.   Make sure they know that they’ll learn something that will make their jobs easier (or make them look smarter)

  • Show academic examples if you’re teaching a technology like Facebook
  • Develop SoftChalk and Camtasia video tutorials that they can access anytime

Is it school culture or generational that some faculty prefer F2F interaction and some prefer self-paced tutorials?  Or perhaps discipline-specific?  Is it easier with newer faculty members?

  • Is it discipline-specific?  Example: within the Humanities, it’s easier to get faculty on board who are in Languages, but not in English (they have the greatest resistance).

You have to do a lot of marketing to get the word out on the campus.

  • But Faculty will tune you out because they’re getting too much.  So they won’t listen to what’s most important.  Does anyone read their email anymore?
  • Ex: of iPad rollout to CSUF Faculty (had to attend orientation to get your iPad, but it wasn’t effective).  Had to identify key apps (i.e. notetaking) and create sessions focused on that rather than general trainings.
  • Open House hours for drop-in questions at the beginning of the semester, also weekly Office Hours for drop-in service. Or online using Adobe Connect, Google Hangouts, Blackboard Collaborate, Elluminate (some faculty will be resistant to using this technology, though).
  • tutorials for software (for faculty and students).

Give away free stuff at trainings to get a turnout (apps, iPad cases, software).

Code Academy (is it good or not?).  Good for dabbling, but not comprehensive.

How do we keep our skills fresh, how do we navigate different worlds?

  • Don’t use corporate language with academics (learn their jargon)
  • (Jana’s personal observation: there are all women in this session.  Really curious about what’s going on with that….)
  • Hard to communicate:  we’re too “techie” for our constituents.
  • website–> lovely website, but stagnant content, not interactive;, (very responsive to library needs, a hosted solution); custom solutions are frustrating when they depend on one developer and aren’t well-documented
  • Paradox of being older chronologically, but being the youngest technology-wise?  The issue of being support staff or “para-professional” rather than TT.  Lack of authority to be able to explore and implement new things?  Also, being spread too thin because of wanting to try so many projects/possibilities.  Cyclical nature of busy-ness allows for us to keep up-to-date?  Also, what happens when your “office” is the reference desk?  Is staying abreast of emergent technologies part of your job description (i.e. do you get paid to play at work)?  Difficult to go from being staff to being faculty at the same institution–>you have to go somewhere else.  Similar problem with switching from contract to TT at the same instittion.  Do we care about TT?  Maybe not, but we want to be FT and have permanent positions.  TT get more funding, get sabbaticals.  PT faculty aren’t supported by campus services, aren’t invited to Retreats, aren’t getting technology rollouts (like iPads), aren’t getting Faculty webpages (then students can’t even find info about their professors).




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