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This Data Mine Learning Community, a collaboration between Purdue Libraries, African American Studies and the Department of Anthropology, seeks to create tools and methods to help scholars think critically and engage the public in conversation about the role of Data Science in society. Critical Data Studies is an interdisciplinary field that addresses the ethical, legal, socio-cultural, epistemological and political aspects of data science, big data and digital infrastructure. Particular emphasis will be given to democratic and participatory approaches to algorithm design and responsible data management, curation and dissemination. Opportunities to engage the larger campus community through the monthly Critical Data Studies seminar forms a key component of this cohort.

Additional information can be found at


Any undergraduate student with an interest in the Data Sciences, including ethics, process, technical, governance and policy issues, societal and cultural implications of utilizing large datasets, regardless of major.

Residential Component

  • Students from this learning community must reside in Hillenbrand Hall
  • Information on this residence hall can be found here
  • Students who are required to reside in a different residence hall (e.g. due to the Honors College or athletics participation) or who do not sign a housing contract may not participate in this learning community
  • Your roommate in most cases will be a member of the learning community
  • Completing a housing contract is a separate process from applying for a learning community


Fall and Spring semesters

Associated Classes

Fall 2020

  • ILS 23000 Data Science and Society: Ethical Legal Social Issues (3 credits)
    • Meets the Data Science certificate Foundations in Data Ethics and Digital Citizenship requirement
  • STAT 19000, 29000, 39000, or 49000 (1 credit) The Data Mine I or III or V or VII 

Spring 2021

  • ILS 49500 Critical Data Studies (3 credits)
    • This is a writing intensive course with an independent research project.  Discuss applying credit towards technical writing requirement with your advisor
  • STAT 19000, 29000, 39000, or 49000 (1 credit) The Data Mine II or IV or VI or VIII 

Additional information can be found at

Events and Activities Included:

  • Weekly dinners with LC participants
  • Tour of Purdue’s computational facilities
  • Social gatherings with LC members
  • Seminars by visiting speakers including practicing actuaries and data scientists
  • Meals with campus and community leaders
  • Game / recreation nights
  • Career and graduate school panels

Information above is subject to change. If you are placed in the LC, the associated courses will be on your schedule prior to you registering for the rest of your courses.

Learning Communities ERHT 1275 1st Street, West Lafayette, IN 47906 - (765) 494-5785 or (765) 494-8571,

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