Minor in Digital Studies

Snow on the Main Quadrangle

Students in the College of the University of Chicago may undertake a minor in Digital Studies as a complement to their primary field of study. This minor is intended not just for students who are majoring in the humanities or social sciences but may also be of interest to students majoring in the physical or biological sciences who wish to acquire computational skills in the context of linguistic, cultural, and historical studies.


Students must take six courses to complete the minor in Digital Studies:

1. One course in computer programming: Either DIGS 20001, Introduction to Computer Programming with Python, which is offered annually in the Autumn Quarter; or one of the following courses offered by the Department of Computer Science: CMSC 12100, Computer Science with Applications I”; CMSC 14100, Introduction to Computer Science I”; CMSC 15100, Introduction to Computer Science I”; or CMSC 16100, Honors Introduction to Computer Science I.” Note that CMSC 12100, 15100, and 16100 will no longer be offered as of the academic year 20222023 and CMSC 14100 will henceforth be the introductory course offered by the Department of Computer Science

2. One course in data analysis: Either STAT 22000, Statistical Methods and Applications, which is offered every quarter, or DIGS 20002, Data Analysis I: Introduction to Statistics, which is offered annually in the Autumn Quarter. Note that STAT 20000, “Elementary Statistics,” does not fulfill this requirement, although STAT courses that are more advanced than STAT 22000 would do so.

3. One course in data management: DIGS 20003, Data Management for the Humanities,” which is offered annually in the Autumn Quarter.

4. One course in data publication: DIGS 20005, Data Publication for the Humanities,” which is offered annually in the Spring Quarter.

5. One of the following courses:

  • DIGS 20004, Data Analysis II: Data Visualization and Machine Learning (Winter)
  • DIGS 20006, Data Analysis III: Deep Learning (Spring)
  • DIGS 20007, “Introduction to Digital Humanities” (Winter)
  • DIGS 20021, Digital Archaeology (Spring)
  • DIGS 20031, Digital Texts I (Winter)
  • DIGS 20032, Digital Texts II (Spring)

Please note:

  • DIGS 20004, DIGS 20005, DIGS 20006, and DIGS 20007 each have as a prerequisite DIGS 30001 or an equivalent introduction to computer programming.
  • DIGS 20004 and DIGS 20006 also have as a prerequisite DIGS 30002 or an equivalent introduction to statistics.
  • DIGS 20007 also has as a prerequisite DIGS 20003.

6. One elective course in the humanities or social sciences that deals with digital computing in some fashion, whether or not it entails actual coding. The elective course must be approved by the Director of Digital Studies or it may be chosen from a list of preapproved electives. Note that the elective course may be one of the DIGS courses listed above under number 5.

Please note:

  • Students who have taken courses in computer programming and/or statistics to fulfill the requirements of their major(s) or other minor(s), or to fulfill their general education requirements, cannot double-count those courses to reduce the total number of courses required for the minor in Digital Studies. In that case, they will take additional DIGS course(s) from the list under number 5.

Advising and Grading

Courses taken for the minor in Digital Studies may not be double-counted with the students major(s), other minors, or general education requirements. Courses in the minor must be taken for quality grades, and more than half of the requirements for the minor must be met by registering for courses bearing University of Chicago course numbers.

Students who elect the minor in Digital Studies must meet with the Director of Digital Studies or the Associate Director of Curriculum and Instruction before the end of the Spring Quarter of their third year to declare their intention to complete the minor. Students must complete a Consent to Complete a Minor Program form, available from the College, with the assistance of their College adviser and submit this to the Director of Digital Studies for approval.

Photo by Jean Lachat