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Announcing the Final Projects for the Digital Seed Grants 2017-2018

The Digital Seed Grant (dsi.mtsu.edu/dsgrant) had an impressive amount of applications for its inaugural year, which launched in 2016 (award period of 2017-2018). Due to the quantity and quality of proposals, the Digital Seed Grant Review Committee and Dean of Libraries decided to award three grants for the 2017 academic year. The awardees were announced on the website at http://dsi.mtsu.edu/dsgrant17-18. Below are brief summaries of the winning projects (in no particular order) and a link to their individual outcomes. A PDF copy of this annoucement is perserved in the institutional repository. Access the PDF by clicking view/open here.


Tennessee Communication Association Journal Digitization Project

Primary Investigator:  Dr. Patrick Richey, Communication Studies & Organizational Communication Dept.

Description: This project digitized the Tennessee Communication Association's (TCA) Annual Journal (previously titled Tennessee Speech Communication Association Journal). The only known copies of the 1975-1988 series are hard copies in the Walker Library stacks. The digital copy now allows the scholarship and history of an important statewide organization to be accessible to a much wider range of researchers, scholars, and citizens. This project is of importance to both the academic and public good because it contains both historical and genealogical information about Tennessee. The 14 journal volumes are now accessible online thanks to the Digital Seed Grant funds that supported the work of an undergraduate student who scanned the materials, added metadata of the journal content, and through assistance of the library’s technical expertise, including its journal hosting platform. In addition to the completed journal, the student worker presented on the seed grant and journal digitization process at national conference in 2017. There are plans to continue the journal online under the new TCA title in the future.

Project Website: http://libjournals.mtsu.edu/index.php/tcaj/about


MTSU Digital Literacy Initiative

Primary Investigator:  Dr. Molly Taylor-Poleskey, History Department

Description: The Digital Seed Grant helped fund the two-event Fake News Series: one faculty workshop and one talk by an award-winning journalist. Through these events, the Fake New Series sought to provide tools for discerning credible sources of news and information by bridging classroom learning and digital media literacy.

Combined, these events drew in 73 attendees, which were open to campus and the public. Feedback suggests faculty on campus are already applying civic online reasoning exercises shared at these events and the interdisciplinary interest at these campus events shows the need for teaching media literacy in the classroom.

Project News: The Lecture Series at http://mtsunews.com/fake-news-lectures-spr2018


Digitizing a Collection of Historic Clothing

Primary Investigator:  Dr. Teresa King, Human Sciences Department

Description: The Historic Clothing Collection (1790-1990) is a project of the Textiles, Merchandising, and Design (TXMD) program. The 750+ piece collection is a “working collection,” consisting of donations made by individuals from MTSU, Rutherford County and from across the country, including but not limited to a gown worn to J.F.K.’s inaugural ball and elite brands donated by prominent fashion institutes. A working collection differs from a museum collection, where items are used, studied, handled, and occasionally displayed and/or worn for educational purposes.  This collection was digitized and funded, in part, by the Department of Human Sciences and the Digital Seed Grant. Now 390 of those items have been photographed, along with detailed metadata for discoverability and research purposes, so they are available worldwide to students, professionals, museums, and consumers with an interest in historic apparel and accessories. The grant enabled TXMD student assistants to photograph the collection, and develop a digital inventory, along with the library’s enhanced technical infrastructure that aids in the discoverability and preservation of the collection since garments can now be previewed online before being removed from storage. The collection can be explored via suggested topics, or by circa date, title, type, or textile content, and images are available for download and side-by-side viewing. It is intended to educate and inspire diverse audiences interested in historic apparel.

Project Website: http://dsi.mtsu.edu/clothing

Read more about the collection via the MTSU News article published October 2, 2018 or the one-page collection summary (PDF) available here.

Funding and Support

The Digital Seed Grant is made possible by generous funding and support from the Dean of Libraries and the Digital Scholarship Initiatives project team. For many, this is a starter grant, which can lead to national grant opportunities in the future and Walker Library wants to encourage and support such creativity activity.

As a competitive grant, evaluation of applications and assessment of digital lifecycles of selected projects takes time. The Digital Seed Grant is indebted to the time of the Review Committee, comprised of digital project experts from Walker Library and the Digital Partners (a rotating member from the Department of History, Center for Historic Preservation, Center for Popular Music, Albert Gore Research Center and the University Archives). The Walker Library also thanks those that help promote the grant and encourage participation.

The 2018-2019 call for proposals closed; and those projects will commence on July 1, 2018 and continue until June 30, 2019. The 2018-2019 awardees have been announced, and as those projects are completed, the following website will be updated: http://dsi.mtsu.edu/dsgrant18-19.

Digital Seed Grants 2018-2019 Awarded

The Digital Seed Grant had an impressive amount of applications for its second year. The proposals received were of high quality and diverse in scope. This included submissions from chemistry, aerospace, biology, FIRE, criminal justice, psychology, health and human performance, global studies, English, history, recording industry, and media arts. The Digital Seed Grant Committee commends all the applicants on their proposed research or teaching projects.

Due to the quantity and quality of proposals, the Digital Seed Grant Review Committee and Dean of Libraries decided to award two grants for the 2018-2019 year. We are pleased to announce those winners in no particular order:


3D Biology: Making Claims in the Midst of Natural Variation

Project Lead:  Dr. Anna Grinath, Department of Biology

Project News:

‘Population Variation’.’ Listen to July 17 2018 ‘MTSU on the Record” with host Gina Logue and guest Dr. Anna Grinath at https://mtsunews.com/grinath-3d-biology-july2018/

Professor Uses New Grant To Explore Biology Under the Sea in 3D on ‘MTSU on the Record’. Host Gina Logue interviews Dr. Anna Grinath on the library Digital Seed Grant Award and resulting project. https://mtsunews.com/grinath-on-the-record-july2018/


A Geography of Suffering: Digital History, GIS, and the Stones River National Battlefield Cemetery

Project Lead: Dr. Derek Frisby, Department of Global Studies and Human Geography

Project News:

‘The Search at Stones River.’ Listen to July 5 2018 ‘MTSU on the Record” with host Gina Logue and guest Dr. Derek Frisby at https://mtsunews.com/frisby-stones-river-july2018/

‘MTSU On the Record’ Follows Military Expert’s Searches for Answers at Stones River National Cemetery. Host Gina Logue interviews Dr. Derek Frisby of the library Digital Seed Grant Award and resulting project. https://mtsunews.com/frisby-on-the-record-july2018/


Congratulations to professors Grinath and Frisby. Brief summaries of their Final Projects are available here.

To read about the next cycle for proposals or to see other Digital Seed Grants awarded, visit here.

New Issue: International Journal of the Whole Child

Volume 3, Issue 1 of the International Journal of the Whole Child is now online. The journal is edited by Dr. Kathleen G. Burriss (Middle Tennessee State University) and Dr. Sandra J. Stone (Northern Arizona University).

Walker Library offers free journal hosting services to members of the Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) community. All of the journals we service are digital and open access (free to read online). Walker Library established this journal hosting program to meet the needs and support the mission, values and vision of the university. See more journals published at MTSU here. Check out the journal hosting resources if you wish to learn more about this publishing option.

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Social Explorer Workshop

Introduction to Social Explorer

Tuesday, November 6, 2018, 1:30am-12:30pm, LIB 264A

Social Explorer is a user-friendly tool for creating interactive maps using recent and historical demographic data (e.g., U.S. census and American Community Survey).

This workshop is suitable for students and faculty from many disciplines, including business, criminal justice, education, gender studies, history, sociology, etc.

This hands-on workshop will begin with an overview of the data sets in Social Explorer, followed by step-by-step instructions for completing the following tasks:

  • Create maps using specific variables (e.g., race)
  • Change visualization types
  • Create and compare side-by-side maps
  • Save and share your map
  • Use the “Tell a Story” tool to provide context for your maps.


Prerequisites: None

Presenter: Walker Library’s Digital Initiatives Librarian, Professor Ken Middleton

Location: Walker Library, LIB 264A (Instruction Classroom)


Digital Projects Showcase 2017

Join us on Wednesday, November 29, from 11:30am to 1:00pm for the 2017 Digital Projects Showcase.

Walker Library Digital Scholarship Initiatives invites the MTSU community to a lighting-round style series of presentations on digital projects. Speakers will present in 4, 8, or 15 minute segments on their project which has an emphasis in digital methods or technologies in research, teaching, or outreach from any discipline or area at MTSU. All are welcome to attend and hear about the great research and teaching being done on campus by MTSU faculty, staff and students. 

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The Showcase was competitive and we were impressed with the quantity and quality of applicants. Thank you to everyone who applied and has shown interest in digital scholarship on campus. The final selection is a good mix of faculty, staff and student presenters. The lineup is below:

Section 1 (11:30am-12:20pm)

Presenter Name(s): Title of Project Presentation

Molly Taylor-Poleskey: Journey up the Rhine (Neatline)

Patrick Wilson, Bobby Cooley,Maia Council, Will Albert: Nashville Podcasts (Audacity); 

Molly Taylor-Poleskey, Austin Wilson: Google Earth and the Changing Shape of Nashville

Typhanie Schafer, Alecia Heidt: Bradley Academy Museum and Cultural Centers Digital Interactives (StoryMap)

Victoria Hensley: Using Survey123 to Document Historic Neighborhoods (ArcGIS/Survey123)

Section 1 Questions


Section 2 (12:20pm-1:00pm)

Presenter Name(s): Title of Project Presentation

Wesley Porter, Henrique Momm: Google Earth Engine—Advanced Geospatial Analysis

Lei Miao: Using Matlab Simulation to Facilitate the Research on Intelligent Transportation Systems

Bethany Hall, Derek Frisby: Blue Raiders of Vietnam (StoryMaps)

Section 2 Questions


Location: Walker Library LIB 264A

Time: 11:30am to 1:00pm


See the original Call for Proposal here



Fire Insurance Maps and Historical "Sanborn" Maps

Fire Insurance Maps Online and Other Historical "Sanborn" Map Workshop, Wednesday, March 21, 2018, 11:30am-12:30pm

This hands-on workshop will provide an introduction to the use of Fire Insurance Maps Online (FIMo), a new collection of historical "Sanborn" maps (in color) of more than 100 Tennessee towns. Sanborn maps can be used to locate specific properties and document the development of towns, large and small.

The workshop, which will also include a brief overview of other types of historical maps (e.g., USGS Historical Topographic Maps), will be led by Ken Middleton and is open to all MTSU faculty, staff and students. To explore the library's subscription to Sanborn maps on your own, see the Historical GIS LibGuide and click on "Fire Insurance Maps Online" (FIMo).

Location: Library 264A (Instruction Classroom)


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CFP Now Open: Digital Seed Grant

Annoucing the call for Digital Seed Grant Awards

The Digital Seed Grant competition for 2018-2019 is now open. The call for proposals (CFP) is open to MTSU faculty, researchers and graduate students pursing digital scholarship projects in research, teaching, or public outreach. See the call for proposals at http://dsi.mtsu.edu/dsgrant. Examples of digital projects, past winners, and application guidelines are available at that website. Applications for the 2018-2019 cycle are due April 9, 2018.

Digital Workshops Series-Spring 2018

The Spring 2018 lineup for the Digital Workshops Series is now available. Mark your calendars for learning SPSS, NVivo, Sanborn/Historical Maps, and Storymaps. The Digital Workshop Series was designed to increase the awareness and skills of digital scholarship tools and methods for research, teaching and public outreach. Details on each workshop will soon be released. For now, pencil them in on your calendars. All workshops take place in Walker Library, LIB 264A Instruction Classroom.

SPSS: February 7

NVivo: February 21

Sanborn & Historical Maps: March 21

StoryMap: April 4

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For a PDF copy of this schedule, click here.

StoryMap Workshop

Are you a faculty member interested in using a mapping application as a course project or optional platform for an assignment? Are you a student in need of more training on mapping applications to complete an assignment? Are you just interested in learning more about GIS or other mapping alternatives? Looking for a place to start? Come learn about StoryMaps, an interactive mapping application by ESRI, from the Library's own Ken Middleton. Check out the schedule below.

Unknown Object

Introduction to StoryMaps, Wednesday, April 4, 2018, 11:30am-12:30pm

Location: Library 264A (Instruction Classroom)

**Registration required for hands-on learning.


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