Download PDF

Course Goals

Like all history courses, this course aims to impart both knowledge about a specific subject and some broader skills.

  1. Give you a stronger vocabulary for interacting with data as a primary source and thinking about its origins, setting, and biases.
  2. Conduct and communicate archival research.
  3. Communicate clearly and respectfully in an oral setting.
  4. Write clearly and informatively about non-textual artifacts like datasets, data visualizations, and account books with a focus on clear, succinct, and precise description.
  5. Debate and describe the ways that contemporary practices of “Big Data” are shaped by and differ from a long historical context;
  6. Apply sophisticated historical models of technology shapes social change, and vice versa.
  7. Interpret historical sources of data, and recast them into contemporary terms you and your peers can understand; and
  8. Understand some of the major turning points in the history of computing, data collection, and social control.