Perusall: use and try-out

We will read in this course a few research papers. Typically, you will understand a lot of them, but not immediately everything. Wouldn’t it be helpful if you could point to the sentence you don’t understand, and ask somebody for help? Well, you can. You will read these papers via the social annotation tool Perusall. It allows you to make annotations in the paper, and these annotations are visible to the other students in this course. They can answer your question, and again these answers are visible to all.

The more people use Perusall to ask/answer questions, the more useful it becomes. In order to give you an incentive to use it, raising or answering a minimal number of questions on Perusall is part of the weekly tasks for for-credit students (you will clearly see in which weeks Perusall-related tasks appear).

The rest of this page describes how you can login to Perusall, and how you can use it. It is recommended to create your account already now, such that you can proceed smoothly once you’ll need it in the course. Once logged in, you will find a sample document to try out some features of Perusall.

  • Go to the login page of Perusall, and create an account. You can use your Facebook, Google or Twitter account if you have one, or create a new dedicated account.
  • When Perusall asks you for the access code, give COTTENIER-3MT48 for hyperfinecourse A (2022), or COTTENIER-L4BEK for hyperfinecourse B (2022) (the two parts of the course require their own separate access code).
  • In the list with ‘Assignments’ in the left column, take the one called ‘Perusall try-out’.
  • You will see the one-page try-out ‘paper’ now. Select one word or sentence, and enter a ‘question’ in the panel that will pop up at the right.
  • Experiment with how to add text to your question, from simple to fancy (e.g. adding a hyperlink).
  • The ‘locate’ button in the grey bar ‘current conversation’ is useful too, in particular for longer documents.
  • In the right-most vertical bar, check the effect of the ‘current conversation’ and ‘all conversations’ icons.
  • Select one conversation, and submit your ‘answer’ to that conversation.

Ready to go, you’re Perusall-proof now!