Accessible Data Visualizations

Ansley Colclough

Data, Data Visualisation Week, Pedagogy, Tools

Are you reading this blog post from computer screen or an screen reader? Did you need to adjust the font or text size, screen brightness, or filter the interface through a browser extension or rely on an app like Accessibility to access this information? In her entry on “Access” in Keywords for Disability Studies, Bess Williamson notes that despite advances in accessibility rights due to technology, “technical change does not necessarily translate to the deeper goals of openness, inclusion, or opportunity”

When Data Visualization Goes Wrong and Numbers Mislead

Ansley Colclough

Data, Data Visualization

Source image: The Most Misleading Charts of 2015 Fixed on Quartz To some students and readers, one of the rhetorical effects of data visualization is that the mere presence of a pie chart, graph, or timeline on a page confers “legitimacy” to an argument. At worse, this gesture attempts to obfuscate weak evidence. At best, the information conveyed may be correct but unnecessary to support an argument. In a piece for The New York Times, By the Numbers writer Charles M. Blow compared the

Data Visualization: Visualizing Sound Texts

Ansley Colclough

Data, Multimodal Writing

     In an upcoming lesson plan, I introduce some ways in which visualization be used to analyze elements of a literary text such as genre, theme, motifs, or plot structure. However, that lesson plan focuses predominantly on visual works. What are some of the ways in which visualization could be used to explore sound compositions, such as music?       Visualizing audio texts allows students in literature classes to convey information without requiring a background in musical theory.

Lesson Plan: Visualizing and Analyzing Texts with Voyant

Ansley Colclough

Data, Pedagogy, Tools

In writing and literature classes, we teach our students to gather evidence from close reading in order to support their arguments. In what ways could data visualization charts actually aid processes of reading? The visualization tool Voyant allows the user to track the relative appearance and context of specific words and phrases in a specific body of text, from a poem to an entire corpus. While digital tool analysis by no means replaces close reading, it can be useful for

Archiving in the Age of Writing Productivity

Ansley Colclough

Digital Archiving

The Digital Archiving team is currently working on the creation of an app that aims to explore what rethinking the “archive” would mean for pedagogy and writing. One implication of rethinking “archiving” and “writing” might be that writing in digital media is always already a process of archiving. How might our daily academic writing change? What technologies aimed at “everyday writing” already exist?