Spring 2018 - ENGL 363 D100

Studies in Digital Humanities: Theory and Practice (4)

Class Number: 11201

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Tu 1:30 PM – 5:20 PM
    SWH 10051, Burnaby

  • Instructor:

    Margaret Linley
    Office: AQ 6107
    Office Hours: 12-1pm T-Th
  • Prerequisites:

    Two 100 division English courses, and two 200 division English courses.



Focuses on the study and application of theories, methods, and tools in the field of digital humanities. Addresses questions of how digital literature and the digitization of texts, digital communication technologies, and computational methods reshape our understanding of literature and other media.


Digital Literary Studies:
What is it? How do we do it? Why do it?  

  What is it? How do we do it? Why do it? -- These three central questions of digital literary studies open a host of further questions.
  •  How do books change when they move from print to digital format?
  • How do digital tools and practices transform the way we access literary works?
  • How might we use computers to help us read and understand literary content?
  • Can computers help us identify and understand literary form?
  • How do digital contexts shape the way we classify and criticize texts?

In this course we will explore pressing questions arising from the changing nature of literary studies in the digital age, especially those of quantity, distance, and scale. Using our weekly readings as a guide, we will discover and assess a range of tools and methods that can be applied in literary text analysis, visualization, and spatial mapping. We will also try out some of these tools ourselves in class. In this way, we will learn basic, practical skills and investigate new critical methods arising from the potential as well as the problems of digital literary studies. Our course readings will guide us through the broad spectrum of issues and debates that fall under the umbrella of digital humanities and related fields such as comparative media, new media, and critical digital studies.

No prior technical knowledge or experience is necessary.


  • Seminar Preparation and participation 10%
  • Critical Reading Responses (blog posts) 25%
  • Digital Practice Lab Assignments 25%
  • Course paper/web project (equivalent to 8-10 pages) 40%



A courseware pack of weekly readings will be made available electronically.

Department Undergraduate Notes:

IMPORTANT NOTE Re 300 and 400 level courses: 75% of spaces in 300 level English courses, and 100% of spaces in 400 level English courses, are reserved for declared English Major, Minor, Extended Minor, Joint Major, and Honours students only, until open enrollment begins.

For all On-Campus Courses, please note the following:
- To receive credit for the course, students must complete all requirements.
- Tutorials/Seminars WILL be held the first week of classes.
- When choosing your schedule, remember to check "Show lab/tutorial sections" to see all Lecture/Seminar/Tutorial times required.

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://students.sfu.ca/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html