Digital Futures for Studying the Past

Digital Futures for Studying the Past: Integrating Oxford Collections into the History Curriculum

Oxford has a wealth of amazing collections from all periods; coins, cuneiform, manuscripts, paintings, decorative objects of infinite variety, scientific and musical instruments, natural historical specimens, and ethnographic artefacts. These collections have immense potential to enrich the study of history, providing vivid insights complementary of those offered by more traditional written sources. But access to these objects is often necessarily restricted, especially since only a small fraction are on display, and the Coronavirus has only made this access harder.

This was why St Anne’s History Fellow Howard Hotson has helped lead the development of Cabinet, an online platform designed to support teaching with objects and images. Its ultimate aim is to make high resolution 2D and 3D images as accessible for learning as traditional text-based sources. Although focused initially on making Oxford collections accessible to Oxford undergraduates, the project is now also networking together multi-media materials assembled from all over the world and expanding to serve every educational level.

In this event Howard will introduce us to Cabinet, demonstrate its effectiveness in teaching, and give a glimpse of its exponential potential future development. A current third-year historian, Brandan Powell-Josiah, will also comment on the potential of project from a student’s perspective.

After the presentation, the audience will be able to explore some of the riches stored in Cabinet for themselves.

To register to attend, please complete the Form here, or email us at Please note that the registration form will close at 5.30pm on 18th March, to register after this point please email 

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