Evaluating Digital Scholarship

MLA’s Profession 2011 is out and it includes six articles within the section on “Evaluating Digital Scholarship.” All of the articles within “Evaluating Digital Scholarship” are openly available (no library subscription needed), excellent, timely, and needed.
It is critically important for academia to engage and grapple with concerns over the evaluation of digital scholarship. This work is specifically needed to develop the necessary supports for evaluating digital scholarship as scholarship that “counts” for promotion and tenure. The official evaluation is difficult because traditional reporting separates work into three categories: research, teaching (or core job duties in some instances, as it is for me as a tenure-track librarian), and service. Digital scholarship is often public scholarship (and I would argue that it should always be the case) and is often collaborative, and so digital scholarship often crosses traditional evaluation categories. This is generally the case for a good deal of academic work, but not necessarily to the same extent or degree of complexity. The evaluation and measurement of digital scholarship is needed because digital/public scholarship is needed for inquiry into existing research areas, increased impact and benefit from research, and increased visibility and connection of scholarship with the public.
The articles in the section on “Evaluating Digital Scholarship” in Profession 2011 are:

  • Introduction
    Susan Schreibman, Laura Mandell, and Stephen Olsen
    Full text (PDF)
  • Engaging Digital Scholarship: Thoughts on Evaluating Multimedia Scholarship
    Steve Anderson and Tara McPherson
    Full text (PDF)
  • On the Evaluation of Digital Media as Scholarship
    Geoffrey Rockwell
    Full text (PDF)
  • Where Credit Is Due: Preconditions for the Evaluation of Collaborative Digital Scholarship
    Bethany Nowviskie
    Full text (PDF)
  • On Creating a Usable Future
    Jerome McGann
    Full text (PDF)
  • Peer Review, Judgment, and Reading
    Kathleen Fitzpatrick
    Full text (PDF)