The Lab for the Education and Advancement in Digital Research (LEADR) was recently featured in the State News, highlighting Anthropology graduate and undergraduate students. This lab is a collaboration between the Department of History, Department of Anthropology, and MATRIX: The Center for Digital Humanities & Social Sciences to allow students to engage with digital tools and technologies and to learn new digital pedagogies. It is open to Anthropology and History majors and those who have a course hosted in the lab.
LEADR, located in Old Horticulture Hall, is changing the way social sciences and humanities are traditionally researched, turning text-heavy publications into documentaries, turning podcasts, photographs and diagrams into 3-D models or interactive maps. Basically, the program veers away from traditional historical and anthropological research and switches to modern, digital, innovative platforms.
“It’s given me the ability to be digitally literate,” anthropology senior Hannah Trevino, said. “In one of my classes I learned how to code, which allowed me to maybe not do it proficiently in my own setting, but I can at least speak the language.” Trevino didn’t know how to utilize technology tools before her class as few have prior experience with these kinds of digital resources before utilizing the lab.
“It’s not just a paper that is read by the student and the professor and then is thrown in the trash, but they’re projects that contribute to ongoing discussions about history, culture and heritage,” the director of the lab, Brandon Locke said of the projects created here.
LEADR represents the Department of Anthropology’s commitment to thoughtful digitally inflected work in anthropology and cultural heritage.