The aim of this training course is to equip you with the skills required to build and use a relational database suited to historical research. Creating databases can be a relatively simple process, especially with today’s desktop software, which is geared to offering help at every stage; with a little bit of extra effort additional functionality can be built into the ‘database application’ which will enable it to form the most valuable and powerful of customised research tools. Entering data into the database can be a time-consuming endeavour, but if it is done correctly into a well-designed database then the potential improvements offered in terms of information management and analysis more than repays the effort. This course continues from the free online course Designing databases for historical research.
Consideration of data preservation should be at the core of what researchers do, not just to make sure that you don’t lose your research data, or can’t find what you are after, once you have been away from it for a while, but if you wish also to make it available to other researchers in the future. This course guides you through the minefield that is data preservation and gives you handy tips as to how you can include it in your day to day work without it seeming like a chore.
This free module provides an overview of important concepts both in terms of the historical data that might be used in databases and in terms of the design process. The module takes the form of a handbook, broken down into chapter headings and acts as the preliminary module for the Building and using databases for historical research online course.
Case studies and introductory training modules in the use of various advanced digital techniques. Although primarily focused on semantic data markup and text mining, there is also information about other areas: visualisation, linked data, and cloud computing.
Medievalists have always found it difficult to interact with primary sources from their period of study due to a lack of training in palaeography (and manuscript studies), that is to say, the reading and understanding of ancient documents. This course provides scholars and the general public interested in medieval books and documents with online training on the diverse areas found within palaeography. Topics covered include general palaeography, the history of medieval scripts, diplomatic, codicology and illumination.