The Intersection of Digital Technology and Scholarship Part 4

The promotion and tenure process (henceforth referred to as P&T) is the core of our advancement within academia.  But, changing the process is slow.  Incorporating “new” methods of delivering scholarship into P&T documents can be an agonizing chore.  One unnamed department just recently started to include video as a recognized scholarship output.  Video.  If video takes decades to get included, how long will it take for things in the oncoming avalanche of technology to get recognized?

Problem: Research is …

The Intersection of Digital Technology and Scholarship Part 3

Ah, peer review, a once inscrutable practice has come under fire for not living up to its promise.  As academicians we need to realize that our work needs to be accepted by our peers.  Without it we are reporters without validation.  Don’t get me wrong, the world needs reporters and the public likes reporters, but that isn’t good enough in our world.  Our peers must have the opportunity to critique and validate our work.  As a scientist this is important …

The Intersection of Digital Technology and Scholarship Part 2

Several articles in the media have been published in recent years that depict universities as leftist, liberal outposts with arguments ranging from the downfall of research to the downfall of the entire education system.  The point of this post is not “liberal” and “conservative” in the political sense, but rather the dictionary definitions.  Being liberal, according to Merriam-Webster, can mean “not opposed to new ideas or ways of behaving that are not traditional or widely accepted”, whereas conservative can mean, …

The Intersection of Digital Technology and Scholarship Part 1

In order to begin a meaningful discussion on digital scholarship, it must be defined.  I prefer this definition: “Digital scholarship is the use of computer or electronic technology for intellectual work that is created, synthesized, applied, and communicated AND is validated by one’s peers.”  The last part of that sentence is key for those of us in academia.  Peer-review is the building block upon which our careers are constructed.  Of course it is a flawed system as it currently exists, …