Digital Humanities Impact on Education

The digital environment offers expanded possibilities for exploring multiple approaches to what constitutes knowledge and what methods qualify as valid for its production. …. Playful, imaginative, participatory work is not the enemy of education, but its exuberant and vital engine.

Burdick et al. “One: From Humanities to Digital Humanities,” in Digital_Humanities (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2012), 24.

This quote here illustrates the power of digital humanity that can affect the field of education, especially K-12 education. For me, growing up, everything in my school life is test-oriented. Thus, anything that is outside the test syllabus is strongly discouraged by the teachers or faculty members. They believe that the only way to succeed in middle school and high school is through repetitive homework, quizzes, and exams. However, that is not true. I am strongly convinced that using diverse teaching methods can help students better absorb abstract concepts. For example, students may understand the french revolution better by actually seeing a visualization of the scene depicted in the painting Liberty Leading the People. With the advance in the current digital environment, such visualization can be achievable. I find it inspiring to see that the digital environment has the ability to reshape how students perceive new knowledge, which may better increase the learning efficiency and students’ general willingness to learn.

In high school, I was very interested in robotics and participated in an after-school club to work on a robotic competition. During my time in the club, I had hands-on experience on how to design the robot arm to minimize the load on the motor, which involves a lot of mechanics. I also learned how to connect different wires and electrical components. Thus, unintentionally, I become more familiar with several key physics concepts such as mechanics and circuits since I practice them every day, which results in higher test results and better performance in class. Participating in this club enables me to perform better in schoolwork, which directly proves how participatory work can have a positive impact on education.

In the field of Digital Humanities, I am most excited to see how to provide more concrete examples or illustrations of some abstract concepts. I feel like just throwing pure definition to students is an inefficient way to convey any information. I want to either incorporate some common examples seen in real life or create a visual representation into the project to better educate the audience and help them unintentionally understand some concepts which may be too abstract by just looking at them.


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