Skip to main content


SEL3417 : Dissertation: Digital Edition

  • Offered for Year: 2023/24
  • Module Leader(s): Dr James Cummings
  • Lecturer: Dr Aditi Nafde
  • Owning School: English Lit, Language & Linguistics
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
  • Capacity limit: 10 student places

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 20.0
European Credit Transfer System


This module gives students the opportunity to work with the Special Collections archive and to produce their own scholarly digital edition. In undertaking a digital edition students will learn:

1. how to work with archival primary sources;
2. how to transcribe, edit, markup, and publish an edition;
3. how to convey their editorial process to readers

Outline Of Syllabus

Seminars will introduce students to the history and theory of textual editing, scholarly digital editions, and theories of digital text. Practice based workshops will train students in working with archival material and all necessary skills for the editing, markup, and online publication of their digital edition. Their independent research will be reinforced through a series of supervisory meetings.

No prior digital or editorial knowledge is required.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion1195:00195:00Assessment preparation
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading1100:00100:00Module research
Guided Independent StudySkills practice150:0050:00Digital skills practice
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching42:008:00Introductory seminars
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops13:003:00Special Collections Introduction
Guided Independent StudyProject work124:0024:00Transcription of source material
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops53:0015:00Computer-based practical training
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDissertation/project related supervision51:005:00Supervisory Meetings
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

- Small group teaching introduces students to the theories and concepts of the module.

- The special collections workshop provides students a chance to examine possible sources for their edition and be trained in the handling and use of archival materials.

- The computer-lab workshops supply the skills training necessary for creating and publishing digital editions.

- Supervisory meetings give a chance for 1-to-1 discussion and answer questions before any deadlines.

- Guided independent study builds in time for students to transcribe their texts, research their projects, practise newly-acquired skills and to prepare their assessment.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise2A50Scholarly Digital Edition. 4000-5000 words +/- 10% worth of work (submitted separately)
Essay2A50Editorial introduction to the digital edition. 4000 - 5000 +/- 10% in length
Formative Assessments

Formative Assessment is an assessment which develops your skills in being assessed, allows for you to receive feedback, and prepares you for being assessed. However, it does not count to your final mark.

Description Semester When Set Comment
Research proposal1AEdition plan inc. choice of text, summary of editorial work to be undertaken, & annotated research bibliography. 500 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The formative research proposal ensures the student has produced an account of their chosen topic and their research-to-date.

The final assessment due in semester 2 enables the students to demonstrate their acquisition of skills and knowledge on the module. The final assessment consists of two parts: the digital edition which is assessed on the editing and encoding and the editorial introduction which is submitted in the form of an essay.

Reading Lists