Stage 2: Multi-Media Exhibits (Due Monday, Dec. 11)
Students will build an online multi-media exhibit analyzing Dickinson College’s connections to slavery or antislavery. Exhibits may approach the topic from almost any relevant perspective or period, but they should build directly from topics already approved and developed in the exhibit papers submitted on November 29th. Late exhibits will be penalized up to 5 points per day.
- Students should build their online exhibits in the free platform Weebly and email a public URL to Prof. Pinsker by December 11th.
- Weebly sites should incorporate revised text from the Nov. 29th research paper as well as introduce various new multi-media elements, such as self-produced image slideshows, maps, timelines, videos or podcasts. See various video tutorials below.
- Students may use multi-media elements produced by external sources, but these elements must be clearly labeled and properly credited. All exhibits must fully acknowledge and properly credit all of their sources wherever they appear. Credits may take the form of abbreviated citations (Courtesy of Library of Congress), but note that they should usually be supplemented with explanatory captions (Abraham Lincoln, 1847)
- This exhibit will count for two-thirds of the final exhibit grade (or 20% of the overall course grade).
- Exhibits will be evaluated on the basis of research effort, analysis and presentation quality (which includes both prose and design). The best exhibits will provide well-written and well-produced multi-media content designed to help classroom teachers and students understand how the rise and fall of American slavery affected an institution such as Dickinson College. Some projects will also be incorporated into a special House Divided public exhibition on Dickinson’s ties to slavery and antislavery in spring 2018. To see examples from the 2016 temporary exhibit created from the History 204 class, view this Storify essay.
- Websites can be successful with either an interpretive thesis or an essential question.
- Keep your design simple, thinking carefully about how audiences will navigate the site. But take advantage of the online platform to bring to life your topic with engaging visual and other multi-media elements, especially ones that can highlight primary sources or historical sites. Check out these models:
- Allow extra time to produce these multi-media elements. Pay careful attention to production values such as audio or image quality. Always remember that professional quality display demands acute sensitivity to detail.
- Always include a brief About section that provides information about the author and also about the project’s objectives and its intended audience
- NEW Citation format can be more flexible on a website than a traditional paper. Students might consider hyperlinking primary sources and citing only secondary sources, for example, either with Chicago-style footnotes or parenthetical citations (with a Sources Consulted page)
- NEW Students may receive significant technical assistance on multi-media elements, including even help with manning cameras or supervising audio / video editing production, but they should acknowledge all such help.
- Make sure your site is published to the web but discourage search engines from indexing to protect your privacy.
- All exhibits must acknowledge and properly credit their sources. Please take care to use public domain components and to follow fair use guidelines when approaching copyrighted materials.
- Make sure to communicate with Prof. Pinsker by email if you are in danger of missing the deadline.
Stage 1: Exhibit Papers Due (Wed., Nov. 29th)
Students will submit a 10- to 12-page paper that analyzes Dickinson College’s connections to slavery or antislavery. Such connections might be direct (such as the use of enslaved labor on the college campus) or indirect (such as the role of a Dickinson graduate in the antislavery movement). But all papers should employ a sophisticated combination of primary and secondary sources that can help put the particular Dickinson experience or connection under study into broad historical context. These papers represent the first stage of a project process, culminating in the creation of a multi-media website exhibit due by December 11th.
- Papers should be submitted by email and include a descriptive title page and Chicago-style footnotes. Bibliographies are not required.
- This paper will count for one-third of the final exhibit grade (or 10% of the course grade).
- Papers will be evaluated on the basis of their research effort, analysis and prose quality.
- Late papers will be penalized up to 5 points per day.
- Choose a topic in consultation with Prof. Pinsker, one that offers an opportunity to explore an area of your interest in a fashion that will engage a general audience and illustrate an important point (or points) from the historiography of slavery or antislavery
- Good topics can range widely from the Revolutionary War era to Reconstruction, and might include biographical papers, archival research papers, careful textual studies or broad thematic studies. Keep in mind, however, that good paper topics will lend themselves to visual display online.
- Organize the paper as a traditional research paper with an interpretive thesis statement, using third person narration, and the usual mix of primary and secondary sources. Don’t try personalize the paper as a proposal for a final project.