Courses Taught

Digital Space and Place, Northeastern University, Spring 2018

  • What is the “spatial turn” and how does it intersect with the digital humanities? This course offers an introduction to major theories of space and place and how they are being applied through technologies such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS), data visualizations, and 3D modeling. This is a hands-on course in which students will develop digital skillsets, including creating online maps and visualizations, analyzing spatial datasets, and designing virtual exhibits – all within a humanities framework of spatial theory. Classes will consist of a combination of discussion, practicums, walking tours, and field trips. Students will emerge from the course with spatial literacy: the ability to critically read, analyze, and interpret a wide variety of spaces and places (neighborhoods, landscapes, museums) along with ways of representing these geographies in maps, stories, video games, and other mediums.

History of the Western U.S., Northeastern University, Spring 2018

  • This course examines the history of the area that eventually became the western United States. American history is typically narrated from an eastern perspective, a story about a nation moving westward across the continent. This course reverses that perspective, looking at American history from the point of view of different peoples and places in the West. It moves chronologically from the fifteenth century to the present, teleporting from place to place across the West – from a Mandan village along the Missouri River to the geysers of Yellowstone National Park to the glowing neon signs of the Las Vegas strip. These different perspectives paint an unfamiliar picture of otherwise familiar historical topics. You will learn about a powerful indigenous empire of Comanches that dominated its Euro-American neighbors, a Pacific world of commerce, trade, and travel that linked San Francisco to Shanghai, and a landscape of rugged wilderness and “wide-open spaces” that was also the most urbanized region in the country. The course will trace the history of the U.S. West, the emergence of a powerful regional mythology, and its significance within the larger history of the United States.

History and Trump, Northeastern University, Fall 2017

  • This course introduces history majors at Northeastern to studying the past from a very modern starting point: Donald Trump and his presidency. This class is not a biography or history of Trump specifically, but rather the longer historical context behind some of the themes and topics related to his presidency. It uses current events as a jumping-off point to learn how to study the past. How does the promise to “build the wall” between the United States and Mexico echo earlier attempts to curtail immigration? In what ways is it a departure from the past? When Trump proclaims himself the “law and order” president, how does this situate his presidency within a longer history of mass incarceration? Over the course of the semester students will become detectives, learning skills like analyzing sources, evaluating arguments, interpreting evidence, writing and communicating, and conducting original research uncover the backstory behind current events and the ways the past continues to shape the present world.

Mapping the Past: A Spatial History of the United States, Rutgers University, Spring 2016

  • This course explores the history of the United States through a focus on space and geography – not just the physical geography of mountains and coastlines, but how Americans have imprinted different kinds of space onto that land through maps and trade, elections and protest, migration and warfare. It studies three topics in American history: colonial North America, the Civil War Era, and the racial landscape of the modern United States. The course also helps students develop an overarching visual/spatial literacy through a series of labs and a final spatial history project.

The Digital Historian’s Toolkit: Studying the West in an Age of Big Data, Stanford University, Autumn Quarter 2012

  • The Digital Historian’s Toolkit was an undergraduate “skills” seminar to train students in the use and interpretation of primary sources, in critical analysis of secondary work, and in historical research and writing. I designed the course using a dual-track approach, in which students first read and discussed sources related to the American West and then learned how to analyze those sources using digital techniques within a lab environment.

Tooling Up for Digital Humanities, Stanford University, Spring Quarter 2011

  • I designed and co-instructed a one-credit course to offer Stanford humanities students an introduction to topics in the digital humanities such as database design, text mining, and data visualization.

Service and Mentoring

Peer Teaching Mentor, Stanford University, 2013-2014

  • As a Peer Teaching Mentor I spearheaded the Stanford History Department’s graduate pedagogy program. This included organizing an all-day training session for first-time TAs, a quarter-long syllabus design workshop to prepare students to teach their own course, and a TA shadowing program for first-year graduate students to sit in on discussion sections led by current TAs.


Centennial Award for Graduate Teaching, Stanford University, 2014

  • University-wide award for outstanding graduate teaching in Stanford’s Schools of Humanities and Sciences, Earth Sciences, and Engineering.

Prize for Excellence in First-Time Teaching, Stanford University, 2010-2011

  • Awarded by the Stanford History Department to one new teaching assistant each year.

Teaching Assistant

Global Human Geography (Martin Lewis), Stanford University, Winter Quarter 2012.

Nineteenth-Century America (James Campbell), Stanford University, Winter Quarter 2011.

Colonial and Revolutionary North America (Caroline Winterer), Stanford University, Autumn Quarter 2010.