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This subject provides an introduction to the study of digital culture and society. It asks about the social and cultural effects of the digital revolution – how has it changed the ways we interact, our sense of place and the ways knowledge and understanding are created and shared? How has access to the digital world reshaped social inequalities? How have the ways we work, love, organise our relationships changed? How do we assess the balance of new freedoms and opportunities for participation as against new risks and disadvantages? At a more personal level – how do people negotiate digital identities and relationships, and new relations of public and private, global and local? How does the abundance of data change the ways people understand society and themselves? How do we assess the ethics, sustainability and social/cultural effects of different infrastructures and platforms? In the subject we will read recent scholarship on these questions and introduce and analyse concepts and issues such as: data literacy, digital activism, the attention economy, human-computer interaction, digital ethics, digital ecologies and economies, digital divides, the digital city, algorithms and algorithmic bias, digital story-telling, digitising Indigenous cultural materials and principles of data sovereignty. Teaching of these issues will involve thinking about and working on specific instances – such as a website or platform design, a database or simple visualisation tool.
Intended learning outcomes
On completion of this subject, students should be able to:
- practice enhanced digital data literacy; and
- explain the social, cultural, economic and political effects of the digital revolution, including of how those effects are differently experienced by different groups; and
- describe how social inequalities are changing through digitisation and how social power relations are transforming, in part because people have different skills and resources to participate in the digital world; and
- critically discuss what data means in the humanities, social sciences and creative arts and the contemporary role and possibilities of data analysis; and
- critically discuss the ethical, political, legal and cultural issues about making cultural materials (including Indigenous cultural materials) public through digitisation; and
- evaluate the effects of the digital revolution on our place(s), including thinking locally, about Australia and the Asia Pacific.
- enhanced digital data literacy skills; and
- capacity to analyse and explain the social, cultural, economic and political effects of the digital revolution; and
- ability to evaluate what data means in the humanities and, social sciences; and
- Enhanced oral and written communication skills
Last updated: 10 November 2023