• 7 Lessons

    HUM 300 Certificate in Oral History for Social Change

    Oral history can be a powerful tool for those working for social change and social justice. The stories we share about our lives and everyday experiences shape the world we live in and often determine the ways others understand their place in the world. Traditional historical narratives have often excluded voices from marginalized communities such as women, people of color, indigenous, young people, lgbtq+, disabled persons, and others. Leaving their stories out of the historical record further contributes to their disempowerment. By making spaces for the telling and preservation of these stories, oral history can support a more capacious and inclusive historical narrative, which is an important mechanism for social change.

    Oral histories can describe the world as it is, but they can also be spaces to identify social problems and imagine social alternatives. Oral historians conduct interviews, transcribe and index the recordings, analyze the oral histories, archive and share them with their audience, often for educational purposes. This certificate program introduces adult learners to Oral History as a tool for social change and helps develop the skills and strategies needed to conduct oral histories ethically and effectively. Building on the Institute for Diversity and Civic Life's extensive oral history training and archival expertise, we walk you through the steps needed to design and execute your own oral history project. Our approach to oral history for social change is informed by our Religions Texas initiative, which is a community-based archive that seeks to diversify the historical record and empower Texans to tell their stories on their own terms.

  • 4 Lessons

    HUM 301 Introduction to Oral History

    Oral History is an accessible research methodology that provides everyday stories with a place in the historical record. In this interactive course, you will uncover the origins of oral history as a distinct research methodology and learn what steps you need to take to begin your project. You will also discover the ways the Institute for Diversity and Civic Life uses oral history as a means to explore the diversity of lived religions in Texas.
  • 4 Lessons

    HUM 302 Oral History and Social Justice

    Oral History is a tool for documenting and preserving marginalized stories that would otherwise go unheard. This course will teach you how to use oral history as a method and tool for social justice and social change. You will delve into the many ethical concerns of oral history projects and learn how to approach them with care, compassion, and trauma awareness. Finally, you will examine the work of influential scholars, practitioners, and projects to help you evaluate the many ways oral history may promote social change.
  • 4 Lessons

    HUM 303 Oral History Project Planning

    In this course, you will cultivate the skills required to design an ethically-guided oral history project. You will reflect on what you hope to learn from your project and build a plan that satisfies your goals. You will develop interview strategies, prepare for your first encounters with potential narrators, and review the Formal Agreement (or Release Forms) needed to conduct oral history interviews.
  • 4 Lessons

    HUM 304 Conducting Oral History Interviews

    Oral History interviewing is an incredibly gratifying experience, but having someone share their most cherished memories with you also comes with a lot of responsibilities. Through this course, you will learn interview techniques and best practices to sustain this work. You will learn about subjectivity and intersubjectivity, self-care for the interviewer, and how to frame questions so narrators can tell their story on their own terms. At the same time, you will learn to set professional boundaries to hold both you and your narrators with care.
  • 4 Lessons

    HUM 305 Archiving and Curating Oral Histories

    Oral historians employ various tools to develop their archives, engage communities, and creatively  work toward social change. In this course, you will learn tips and tricks for processing and organizing oral histories for the archive. We will review the importance of metadata, provide how-to’s for transcription, discuss ways to design an accessible archive, talk with an expert in the field, and explore a range of projects that creatively present oral histories for social change.
  • 7 Lessons

    HUM 400 Community-Based Scholarship

    This introductory and interdisciplinary training is designed for graduate students, university-affiliated academics, and other public scholars interested in doing community-based scholarship. The equivalent of a three-day intensive, this certificate provides scholars with a framework to re-imagine their work as fully rooted within community relationships and extending beyond the borders of traditional academia. Our goal is to help each scholar as they explore the expanding possibilities of what community-based scholarship looks like.

    Scholars—whether they are situated within the academy, nonprofit spaces, or other public-facing arenas—must expand their understanding of research and broaden their skill sets to include collaborative methodologies that prepare them for a wide range of potential scenarios. Each project reflects the complexities of its situated context, and there is no clear “how-to” manual for doing this work. This work requires scholars to reach beyond traditional academic training and enmesh themselves in a place, collaborate with the people who live there, and think creatively about what it means to do research.

    Over the course of this training, we will rethink what a scholar looks like, both in and outside of academia. In addition to reviewing best practices, you will hear from a wide range of scholars as they share stories about the many hats they must wear to be successful at this work. This training is organized around five roles a scholar may navigate when doing community-based scholarship. We will discuss a scholar as a bridge builder, activist, community organizer, project manager, and storyteller. Upon completion, you will have the information and tools you need to initiate a collaborative project and take the next steps to form relationships with community partners.