Workplace Learning: Miscreants & Rascals (HIST*3480) | College of Arts

Workplace Learning: Miscreants & Rascals (HIST*3480)

Code and section: HIST*3480*05

Term: Winter 2020

Instructor: Kris Inwood


Course Synopsis:

This independent study course provides direct experience in the creation and analysis of data describing Canadians imprisoned during the 19th and early 20th. The lives of these people are documented in databases created from the admission registers for early Canadian prisons and jails. By the fall of 2019 we expect to be working on the Toronto Central Prison and St. Vincent de Paul federal penitentiary in Montreal. Your experiential learning opportunity will involve transcribing the prison registers online in order to make rare but highly useful documents more accessible for researchers now and in the future. In connecting this work experience to your academic discipline you will write a series of short critical reflections and a research paper analyzing what can be learned about the patterns of offences and offenders using the prison register as a primary source.

Learning Outcomes:

Upon successful completion of this course, student will have gained:

  • critical Understanding of 19th-century criminal justice systems and prisons
  • ability to understand 19th-century handwriting & vocabulary
  • knowledge of transcription practices
  • knowledge of research practices
  • ability to critically reflect upon your own work
  • ability to critically assess the strengths and weaknesses of criminal justice records as sources

Method of Evaluation and Weights:

Transcriptions 40%
Weekly Critical Reflections 20%
Final Essay 40%
Total 100%

Texts Required:


Please note: This is a preliminary website description only. The department reserves the right to change without notice any information in this description. The final, binding course outline will be distributed in the first class of the semester.