A Digital Humanities Pre-Class Questionnaire

I’m using a questionnaire with my new DH MA students so that I get a sense of what we’re in for – our program takes students from 12 different grad programs across the campus, so there could be anything happening… I share my questions here for a) feedback on things I should’ve asked but didn’t b) things I could’ve asked better c) your own use if you so desire.

First, some basics:

  • What operating system do you use?

Mac OS X
Windows 7/8
Windows 10
Something else? Cool!

  • Have you ever used the command line / terminal?
  • Do you have your own website?
  • Do you have your own domain space?
  • Have you ever set up a blog?
  • Do you use reference software (eg Zotero, BibDesk, Mendeley etc)
  • What text editing software do you habitually use?

A text editor

And then, some questions about more complex tools (I know, markdown isn’t that complex, but in using it with R or KnitR or separating content from tools, etc, things get complicated)

  • Are you familiar with Python?
  • Are you familiar with R?
  • Do you envision maps and mapmaking as crucial to your research?
  • Do you envision sound and music as crucial to your research?
  • Are you familiar with Markdown?


Finally, I ask two questions to address/allay concerns:

  • Please describe any experience or concerns with a digital technology that you feel I should know.
  • Is there anything about this course that concerns you, in terms of technology, and expectations? This will allow me to allay your concerns, or to adapt my teaching, accordingly.


(featured image: ‘Hand’, by Alberto G https://www.flickr.com/photos/albertogp123/5843577306)