28 Days (or Months) Later

As someone who went to grad school in large part due to a fascination with Derrida, I perhaps shouldn’t be surprised that so much of academia seems to be about deferral. Nevertheless I’m always surprised to see something that I wrote months or years ago show up, out of the blue, in its finished form. That happened last week, when I got the print version of an essay I was invited to write for The Academic Exchange, “A Forum for Emory Faculty, Work, Life, and Thought.” My piece, “An Experiment in Progress” (PDF) looks at the relationship between libraries, digital scholarship, teaching, and undergraduate research. Along the way, I talk about the final project for my course “Introduction to Digital Humanities” and several of the projects that we’ve been working on in DiSC this year. If you can’t wait to see the launch of the projects and don’t mind spoilers, you’ll want to take a look!

I was also recently notified that the Twitter assignment that I designed in 2008 for a class at Emory and revised for inclusion in a Spring 2010 course at Clemson has been cited in a white paper (PDF) from OnlineCollege.org. (Talk about zombies/deferral…) True to the white paper’s title–“Implementing Live Twitter Chat Discussion Sessions”–it gives an introduction to Twitter and how it might be used in the classroom or for conducting larger events, like #FYCchat. If you’ve never used Twitter, I’d perhaps recommend starting with a ProfHacker post or two, but this white paper might give you some different strategies aimed particularly at structuring asynchronous chats. What I find most interesting about this whole thing is how my assignment has become a resource–and a citation!–for others, simply by the fact that I’ve shared it online. As Melissa Terras has recently shown, what’s not to gain from making our work public?