Social Science: Technology Resources

Discipline-specific technology resources can be difficult to locate. Incorporate the media type into your search such as the words mobile apps or images.

Mobile Apps

Mobile apps are growing in popularity across the social studies disciplines.

Commerical Mobile Apps

TouchPress is known for their outstanding social science apps including Think Like Churchill in British history, The Pyramids in ancient history, Barefoot World Atlas in geography, and False Conviction in science law.

try itTry It!
Go to TouchPress. Explore their outstanding commercial apps.
You don't need to purchase an app, but be sure to watch one of their videos to get a sense for the contents.

Education. In the area of education, teaching and learning apps are very popular. While some of these are using in the public classroom, many are purchased by parents or home-school teachers.

History. Many reference and education apps are found in the area of history. While some are created by government or museum organizations, others are developed inconjunction with digital collections. Many are connected with for-profit companies that want to sell services such as geneaology consulting. Most history apps incorporate primary source documents and analysis. Some are presented as timelines, while others use a thematic approach.

Government Mobile Apps

Below are examples of government produced mobile apps available through iTunes. Many of these apps are also available for other operating systems. Go to US Government Mobile Apps for a master list.

Scenario Stumpers
I need to do a report on the Cuban Missile Crisis, but I don't really like to read. Any ideas?
How about a multimedia experience? The To The Brink: JFK and the Cuban Missile Crisis by the National Archives is an interactive experience that incorporates lots of primary sources to make learning fun.
The Bottom Line... seek out interesting, engaging information sources for reluctant researchers.

try itTry It!
Download a mobile app in a discipline related to the course. If you don't own a mobile device, find a friend who does. You need to know how this works! Review the app. What do you think? How might it be useful as an information source? Who's the audience? Share your findings.

Mobile Websites

Many government websites are now designed for use on mobile devices.

try itTry It!
Go to one of the mobile apps above using a handheld device such as a smartphone or tablet. How does it work? Does it provide useful information? Is the app easy to use?

Online Tools

Discipline-specific online tools can be found in some areas of social science.

Geography. Many online mapping tools like Google Maps and Google Earth are used in Geography.

History. Rome Reborn is an online project that provides a digital model of ancient Rome.



Social Media

Many social network sites have been established for individuals interested in particular areas of social science. However, most of these sites make use of the popular online tools like Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.

try itTry It!
Go to Pinterest. Brainstorm how this social media tool could be used in one of the social science areas.


Image collections are useful in many of the social sciences.

Open Access Collections


Area and Culture Studies

Scenario Stumper
We've been exploring Native American ledger art as a representation of art and history associated with native peoples. We've read The Ledgerbook of Thomas Blue Eagle by Gay Mattheaei. My students would like to see more examples. Do you have ideas.
The Plains Indian Ledger Art website has an excellent collection of ledger art to explore. Each image also contains ethnographic notes.
The Bottom Line... when looking for online art collections, be sure to select digital sources that contain the option to zoom in close on the works.




Read Harris, Valerie & Hepburn, Peter (May 2013). Trends in image use by historians and the implications for librarians and archivists. College & Research Libraries, 74(3), 272-287. Available: http://crl.acrl.org/content/74/3/227.full.pdf+html

try itTry It!
Browse the image collections. Select a topic and search for additional image collections associated with your topic. Create a list of six of your favorite collections.

Audio and Video

Both audio and video are important to many areas of social science, particular history and political science.

Subscription-based Video

Alexander Street Press

Scenario Stumper
The Problem… I teach a psychology course for graduate students and I’m looking for some videos that demonstrate psychotherapy techniques.
The Suggestion… Use the Alexander Street Press Counseling and Therapy in Video series. Alice Brown’s Core Belief Demonstrations are one example. Available through IUPUI.
The Bottom Line… Video can be a powerful tool in learning. These subscription-based videos provide demonstrations that can be used as the basic for class discussions.

try itTry It!
Select a topic within the social sciences. Explore the resources provided. Also, conduct your own searches. State the topic and information need. Then, share a photograph, infographic, other image of your choice, audio, AND video all related to the same topic (or general area). You can share the actual media document or a link. How do they each provide a different perspective on the topic.

Open Access

Student Resources

Video Resources


Websites can be found in every area of social science. A few are listed below:

Teacher ResourcesPBS Social Studies (filter by topic), EDSITEment, National Geographic

Student ResourcesNational Geographic MagazineFactCheck.org

Links from Library of Congress

try itTry It!
Create your own list of favorite websites in each area.

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