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Information Visualization and the Humanities


Admission requirements

This class is restricted to BA3 students taking either the 15 or 30 EC package in Digital Humanities. Staff and Graduate students are welcome to audit (parts of) the course, if space permits.
For any questions regarding the admission requirements, please contact the lecturer.


While attention spans seem to grow shorter, information is growing in quantity and complexity. This is why clarity in communication and the creation of compelling visualizations is more important than ever, regardless of your disciplinal background. At the same time, it is equally important to understand the design choices and data processing that underlie common forms of information visualizations. This course offers the technical and critical skills needed to read, collect and visualize the types of data that is central to a range of humanity studies.
Students will be introduced to the software tools and best practices for designing, organizing, and managing data and the strategies for creating visualizations and digital presentations that effectively convey complex issues. Readings are drawn from a variety of fields in the humanities as well as information design, databases, geography, and network sciences.

Course objectives

At the end of this course, you will:

  • Be able to articulate how to leverage info visualization to provide an edge in a range of situations, including academic research as well as non-academic professions.

  • Understand how a FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable) approach to data is important for your work and that of others.

  • Be able to critically reflect on a range of visualizations, with a specific focus on network and spatial data.

  • Know where to find some of the inspiring visualizations, thinkers, and designers in this field.

  • Be able to discuss your views on information visualization with peers as well as give and receive feedback.

  • Be able to use a number of information visualization tools, such as network analytic and GIS software or interactive visualization tools.


The timetables are available through My Timetable.

Mode of instruction


Assessment method

  • Assignments

  • Participation

  • Final project


Assignments: 40 percent
Class Participation & Peer Feedback: 20 percent
Final project: 40 percent
Final mark for the course is established by determining the weighted average


Students who have scored an overall insufficient grade for the course may take a resit for the assignments and the final project, in the form of a comprehensive take-home test (in place of assignment) and a project assigned by the lecturer.

Exam review

How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will have to be organized.

Reading list

For this course we will make frequent use of the book “Design for Information” by Isabel Meirelles (2013;Rockport publishers).
Other reading and resources for this course can be found at


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available on the website

Registration Studeren à la carte

Registration Contractonderwijs


Dr. A.A.A. Mol