Final Project

The Finished Projects:

Food Trucks of L.A.

Entertainment in L.A.

The Olympics


Harry Potter and the Muggle World

Cataclysmic Events

Alt Narratives

Photography in the Digital Age


The Assignment

(Download this assignment as a PDF.)

Working in groups, you will complete a web-based scholarly resource site on a topic of your choice. (Topics in previous years have included art through technology, food studies, drugs and subcultures, health culture, L.A. transportation, and the films of Quentin Tarantino.) Imagine your scholarly resource site as a web-based introduction to your topic. It should be comprehensive, well-designed, and thoughtfully documented. While in some ways the project will look like an encyclopedia, it’s perfectly fine for your group to have a distinct point of view, or to advance an argument.

The project will consist of the following components:

  • A repository of at least 50 objects that, considered collectively, represent important artifacts of the topic you’re describing. Each object must include an image, well-formed metadata, and a narrative description.
  • Exhibits, one for each team member, that use the objects in your repository to tell a story about an aspect of your topic.
  • A map that depicts some important geographic dimension of the topic under consideration.
  • A data visualization of some important dimension of the topic under consideration.
  • A timeline that depicts some important chronological dimension of the topic under consideration. (The map and timeline may be combined.)
  • An “About” page that summarizes briefly the purpose of the site and makes it clear what the group’s process was, who did what, and the rationale for each tool, technology, and dataset used.

In addition, you will submit, as a PDF, a Documentation Portfolio, consisting of:

  • Your group’s charter and project one-pager
  • Annotated bibliography of sources related to your topic
  • Metadata standards document, with one-page rationale
  • Document listing each of the tools selected for the project, each with a paragraph describing the rationale for each tool’s selection
  • Wireframe of the site structure
  • Seven to ten-page narrative describing the process of building the site from start to finish, including the assignment of roles, method of collaboration, acquisition of technical skills, decisions about sources and datasets to use, problems encountered along the way, how those problems were resolved, and what you’d do differently next time.

Finally, each group member will submit, separately, a one-page self-evaluation, describing his or her contribution to the project, what he or she did well, and where he or she might improve collaboration skills.

Archiving your final project

Every web resource needs to be hosted on a server in order for other people to access it. Your group will purchase its own server space to host your project. We will use Reclaim Hosting, which costs $25 per year and includes your own URL. (If you have server space of your own you’d like to use, please speak to Prof. Posner or Francesca Albrezzi.) Each group will pool its money to purchase its own server space.

At the conclusion of the class, you have the option of maintaining the server that hosts your project (meaning that you will continue to pay for the space) or letting the project expire. You’ll need to decide as a group which you prefer.

Whatever you decide, your project will be permanently archived as a static site on UCLA’s own servers. This means that while it will look like the site your group has built, you will not be able to update the archived version.


In order to provide you with regular feedback as you complete your project, we’ve scheduled a set of milestones on which elements of your project are due.

October 17, in lab
Form groups
Purchase server space
Install Omeka

October 20, in class
Submit group’s research topic via CCLE

October 31, by lab
Project one-pager and charter submitted via CCLE

Friday, November 7, by lab
Annotated bibliography of 30 sources on your topic submitted via CCLE

Friday, November 14, by lab
Metadata standards document due, with one-page rationale, submitted via CCLE. Guidelines.

Friday, November 21, by lab
Tool evaluation completed. Submitted via CCLE. Guidelines and suggested tools.

Monday, December 8, by classtime
Wireframe mockup of project submitted as PDF via CCLE. Guidelines.

Friday, December 19, by 11:30 a.m.
All project work complete, including documentation.

Friday, December 19, 11:30-2:30
Final project presentations

OBJECT REPOSITORY (Possible points: 20)
Object selection Objects are relevant to the topic, thoughtfully selected, and constitute a coherent body of artifacts. 4
Narrative descriptions Narratives are substantive, meaningful, and free from error. 4
Metadata Metadata is complete and consistent, its rationale thoughtfully documented. 4
Images Images are appropriate, visually appealing, and properly attributed. 4
Exhibits Exhibits are structurally sound, tell meaningful stories, display thorough knowledge of the topic, and tell a coherent story. 4
MAP Map functions well technically and is visually appealing, accurate, and makes a clear contribution to the understanding of the topic as a whole. 12
TIMELINE Timeline functions well technically and is visually appealing, accurate, and makes a clear contribution to the understanding of the topic as a whole. 10
“ABOUT” PAGE Includes information about what this resource is designed to do, what each team member did, how the objects and datasets were selected, and how the site was built; is well-written and thoughtful. 10
INTERFACE DESIGN Site is easily navigable, coherent in look, and aesthetically appealing. 10
DATA VISUALIZATION Dataset used is appropriate. Mode of visualization is appropriate to data type. Visualization is clear and coherent. 12
DOCUMENTATION (Possible points: 20)
Project one-pager Thorough, well-fleshed-out, with a reasonable plan for accomplishing the project. 2
Group charter Thorough document of group’s rules of engagement, displaying evidence of careful planning. 2
Metadata standards document Standards are well-described, their rationale logical and thoroughly documented. 2
Annotated bibliography Sources are selected with care. Descriptions make clear how the source contributes to the overall understanding of the topic. 4
Tools rationale document Demonstrates evidence of careful thought about availability of tools and appropriateness of tools to scholarly project. 2
Wireframe Thorough, functional, executed with care. 2
Project narrative Comprehensive, candid, displaying evidence of careful reflection. Relates project work to key themes within the class itself. 5
PRESENTATION Presentation is clear, well-rehearsed, fits into the time allotted, and well-illustrated with appropriate slides and visual aids. 5

We reserve the option of adjusting individual scores by as much as 10 points to account for variations in individuals’ contributions to the projects, as observed through lab interactions, conversations with group members, and the project narrative.