Digital Humanities

Academic Year 2023 – 2024


Since it opened in 2014, the Center for Digital Humanities (CDH) has worked with hundreds of graduate students representing every division except the natural sciences. Students from each humanities department and from sociology, anthropology, history, politics, architecture, and computer science have found community and collaboration at the CDH, learning to meld data acumen with critical archival theory and computational and data-driven approaches to culture, writ large. The CDH is known internationally as a leader in faculty, post-doc, and graduate mentorship. We excel at bringing humanistic perspectives to data science applications, teaching humanities students how to approach research questions with computational and data-driven methods, as well as a deep engagement in the history and theories of these technologies and techniques.

Through initiatives like the Graduate Fellowship, Project Management Fellowship, Humanities Data Teaching Fellowship, and Data Fellowship, the CDH has helped graduate students explore innovative and cutting-edge methodologies in humanities scholarship through data-driven and computational analysis, and to integrate critical approaches to the application of technology in a wide variety of domains. CDH-sponsored programs are widely-known as open, community-driven spaces where students can gain methodological and critical training that crosses disciplines and divisions.

Students are involved in a range of activities including acting as graduate research assistants, project team members, project managers, University Administrative Fellows, assistants in instruction, workshop-leaders, consultants, and as participants in our events, working groups, and courses. Our practice is to meet each student where they are, and to introduce them to and prepare them for a range of possible professional futures that involve meaningful research impact in several fields.

Program Offerings

Program Offering: Certificate

Program description

Beginning AY 2023-24, the CDH will offer a Graduate Certificate in Digital Humanities. The certificate will serve to educate and credential the next generation of humanities researchers in cutting-edge theories, methods, and computational approaches that are transforming fields ranging from medieval history to media studies. Certificate students will have the opportunity to expand their methodological toolkit, and to build a community of praxis that will help them imagine the expanded applications of humanistic thought.

The Certificate will also equip Princeton graduate students to be interdisciplinary, forward-thinking researchers in a competitive academic job market. Certificate students will be primed for careers on the tenure track as well a broader range of positions in cultural heritage institutions, industry or the public sphere.

A student who obtains a Certificate in Digital Humanities will have the qualification appear on their University transcript, demonstrating that they have met standards of competency in the field


Admission to the Certificate is open to PhD students enrolled in a Princeton humanities department (including History and History of Science) who are interested in applying concepts from critical data studies and media theory, or in using quantitative, data-intensive, or coding methods in their research. Students must be in good academic standing and have the written support of their academic advisor or the director of graduate studies in their department. There are no prerequisites.


The Certificate has three components. Progress toward the candidate’s PhD must continue while completing the three requirements below.

  1. Two graduate-level courses:
  2. Original research requirement
  3. Colloquium series participation and presentation
  4. (optional) Participation in Pedagogy or Project Management Workshops: these workshops will complement the student’s participation in the colloquium series.


  1. Two graduate-level courses: students must receive a grade of B or better in each course. Candidates are permitted to have their two certificate courses also count toward their degree progress. These two courses include:
    1. One required core course, HUM5XX / CDH5XX “Data in the Humanities.” This course will be offered beginning Spring 2024.
    2. One elective course from a list approved by the Certificate directors. This course must be taken outside the candidate’s home department.
      1. Certificate directors will publish an approved list of elective courses each semester. Students may petition for an additional graduate course to be included on that list.
      2. Periodically, relevant courses are offered by Inter-University Doctoral Consortium (IUDC) partner institutions in the tri-state area. IUDC courses may fulfill the Certificate’s elective course requirement. (For reference, a list of relevant IUDC courses for the Spring 2022 semester is available on the CDH website.)

Dissertation and FPO

A significant portion of the student’s dissertation must demonstrate proficiency in critical-data and media theories or data-driven methodologies relevant to the humanities.

Additional requirements

Colloquium series participation and presentation: candidates will present their research in a CDH-sponsored colloquium series, open to attendance by the university community.

  1. The student’s presentation will be related to their dissertation, and should involve engagement with humanities data, code, visualization, empirical or quantitative methods, media theory, and/or digital editions and exhibits.
  2. Candidates are required to give one presentation, serve once as respondent to another presenter, and attend each event in the colloquium series for at least two semesters.


  • Director

    • Meredith A. Martin
  • Executive Committee

    • Allison Carruth, Effron Center Study of America
    • Catherine Clune-Taylor, Gender & Sexuality Studies Pgm
    • Brigid Doherty, German
    • Devin A. Fore, German
    • Barbara Graziosi, Classics
    • Matthew L. Jones, History
    • Brian W. Kernighan, Computer Science
    • Arvind Narayanan, Computer Science
    • Marina Rustow, Near Eastern Studies
    • Rocío Titiunik, Politics
    • Janet A. Vertesi, Sociology
  • Sits with Committee

    • Christiane D. Fellbaum
    • Curtis W. Hillegas
  • Associated Faculty

    • Lara M. Buchak, Philosophy
    • Molly Greene, History
    • Helmut Reimitz, History
    • Xin Wen, East Asian Studies

For a full list of faculty members and fellows please visit the department or program website.

Permanent Courses

Courses listed below are graduate-level courses that have been approved by the program’s faculty as well as the Curriculum Subcommittee of the Faculty Committee on the Graduate School as permanent course offerings. Permanent courses may be offered by the department or program on an ongoing basis, depending on curricular needs, scheduling requirements, and student interest. Not listed below are undergraduate courses and one-time-only graduate courses, which may be found for a specific term through the Registrar’s website. Also not listed are graduate-level independent reading and research courses, which may be approved by the Graduate School for individual students.

CDH 507 - Data in the Humanities (also HUM 507)

This course provides a foundation in the history, concepts, methodologies, and tools of digital humanities research. Students learn to critically evaluate and incorporate computational and data-driven methods into their research, as well as achieve a baseline fluency in accessing, filtering, and analyzing humanities datasets. No prerequisites or preexisting technical skills are required. Students working with texts, images, and artifacts are welcome.

GER 532 - Topics in Literary Theory and History (also CDH 532)

Historical and theoretical explorations of the study of literature, highlighting significant methodological and literary theoretical modes of inquiry. Potential topics addressed in this course include representative studies in the history of genre theory, narratology, semiotics, book history, formalism, and the history of reading and writing practices. Theoretical questions are explored via case studies from the history of literature.