University Libraries

Tools + Methodologies

Below are a number of tools to get you started with your own project. For each set, they will run in rough order from easiest to hardest (i.e. online, very little learning curve to those that require stronger programming skills), and will also include short descriptions of each tool and some background reading and viewing. Wherever possible, we tried to use free trainings open to all, but some (like require a University of Minnesota login or password, or a personal subscription to

If there are tools or resources that you think should be on here that aren’t, Let us know!

Data Visualization

RAW: Very easy online data visualization built on the D3.js language
ManyEyes: online IBM platform for more general data visualizations
Tableau Public
NodeXL (PC only): Network visualization program

Gephi: Tool for analyzing and visualizing social networks

Additional Resources:

Galleries of Data Visualizations:

Multimodal Scholarship

Google Sites
Omeka (Web version)

Additional Resources:


Google Maps via Fusion Tables
  • Used through Google Drive

ArcGIS: Proprietary industry standard mapping software; University of Minnesota has a site license
CartoDB: Easy to use proprietary online mapping platform
MapBox: Easy to use proprietary online mapping platform
Leaflet: An open-source Javascript library for maps
QGIS: An open-source desktop GIS platform

Text Mining

R Programming Language

Additional Resources:

Digital Storytelling