From the Record Up

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Center on History and Education

Teachers College, Columbia University

From the Record Up: Mapping the History of Education in NYC

As the summer comes to a close, I’d like to share a few notes about a new project the Center is working on with our good partner Columbia Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL).  The Center has worked closely with CTL over the past three years to develop Living and Learning, a digital learning project which explores what the development of New York City branch public libraries tells about educational history on the neighborhood level.  With the support of a 2017-18 Columbia University Provost Hybrid Learning Course Redesign and Delivery award, the Center is moving forward with CTL, building on what we have learned from the library project,  to encourage new ways of thinking about the history of education in New York City, writ large.  

Center project staff is working to that end by compiling thematic bibliographies of the secondary literature (including bibliographies of the history of higher education and Catholic parochial education in New York City) and sorting through the inherent value of mapping educational assets (sites of teaching and learning) on the neighborhood level.  But what lies at the heart of the project and our work with CTL is a concern with the archival record as a driving force in identifying new directions in scholarship in the history of education in New York City.  Our goal is twofold: to build an open source mapping tool that locates (with supporting collection-level metadata) libraries and repositories across the city’s five boroughs with pertinent archival holdings; and to visualize in time and place the rich history of education in New York City.

A special thanks to the Center’s mapping team: Jean Park (Doctoral Candidate, Teachers College (TC) Program in History and Education); Fevronia Soumakis (Adjunct Assistant Professor, TC Program in History and Education); and Eric Strome (Doctoral Candidate, TC Program in History and Education) have been hard at work over the summer thinking about the visual worth of mapping to the scholarly field and working through all the good (and challenging) questions CTL staff Andrew Flatgard (Learning Designer) and Susan Dreher (Senior Software Engineer ) have posed in relation to Stage 1 of the project.

We are looking forward to working on the next steps of the project as the new academic year begins.   

Please look for updates about our progress!