My name is Loretta Staal. For my research project, I designed a metadata application profile for a school yearbook collection. The library that is the focus of this collection is the Carlsbad City Library in Carlsbad, California.
The History Room has a collection that includes yearbooks for nine different schools. It also contains manuscripts, scrapbooks, and letters from important members of the city, and it has a collection of local newspapers, films and as well as other artifacts.
The Upper Arlington (UA) Archives describes their yearbook collection as historically important because “in addition to student, faculty, and staff photos, each issue contains articles about school sports, organizations, and activities as well as information on local businesses, current events and trends.” (UAPL, 2009). The Abilene Christian College (2010) digital yearbook collection accessed from the Portal to Texas History mentions the historical importance of yearbooks as containing, “…photos of faculty, students, campus organizations, social clubs and sports teams. Many yearbooks also contain original artwork by students, information on and photographs of important events that took place during that year, information regarding the various groups on campus, and/or tributes to faculty, students, or other important persons who had passed away during the year.”
Here is a screenshot of the Carlsbad History Room’s website. You can see there is a nice list of titles and other collections are sorted in a tabbed navigation. The yearbook collection is important enough to have its own tab. It’s a nice list, but it is not an accurate as to what is actually held by the library. Only about half of these titles are in the library’s catalog.
There are several titles cataloged in the History Room, but only four were retrieved from a subject search “school yearbooks.” This is because some of the catalog records are very old and do not contain any subject headings.
Like any project, there are constraints or limitations that will create challenges. First, though much of the collection is not cataloged, the yearbooks are. But, the catalog records are brief, some are pre-AACR2, and the items are lumped together. There are few item by item representations in the catalog.The subject headings are brief and some records are missing subject headings.Equipment to proceed with a digital library needs to be purchased or the digitization needs to be outsourced. This is a process that takes time and research. Any business that the City of Carlsbad contracts out involved the city attorney.Equipment is expensive and budgets are tight. Even though the leadership team at the library is very open to innovation, there still needs to be a well defined justification for creating a digital library. Communicating this to administration will take some skill. Any new technology involves training. Training is needed for the equipment and for describing the metadata. Some of the metadata creators might not have a cataloging background and this will pose some challenges to interoperability and normalization of data.The library will need to get permission from the copyright holders for any yearbooks that have not entered the public domain. There is an excellent resource for reading about copyright for digital libraries and digital library projects:http://www.unc.edu/~unclng/WEBPAGEINDEXCOPYCORNER.htmAnd lastly, privacy is a concern for this collection. Some yearbooks might contain directories that contain personal information, and these will have to be excluded from the online digital library.
Yearbooks are a very popular collection and it is a reasonably sized collection to undertake. I think it is a good idea to start with a title that contains the least amount of volumes and then work through the collection.Metadata schema—this needs to be a widely adopted schema in order to share and reuse. The Dublin Core is the most widely adopted schema used by libraries and it is compatible with MARC fields. Cross-walking is not too complicated.Choose the core elements for this collection. There is no “one-size-fits-all” schema, and metadata is very flexible. Define the application profile. Write it clearly enough so that anyone, even those without any cataloging background, can describe the materials.Choose the content management system and share our important collections! CONTENTdm is a popular system for libraries that seems to have an easy user interface. Carlsbad has a contract with OCLC, so using this program would be practical and financially prudent. The contract with OCLC includes this, but the library has not taken advantage of it yet. Using CONTENTdm, metadata creation and editing will be web based.
Selecting the best team possible is a crucial part of the planning. People will need to have different expertise. Cataloging, IT, systems, database management, legal knowledge, public services and reference experience, archival experience.This diversity will pose the most challenge to what might be considered important and compromise will have to happen.Priorities and goals will be set.Project will be revised as needed.The yearbooks will be scanned, files will be named appropriately, and data will be stored on a server and backed up on other storage devices.Metadata will be created, edited, analyzed, tested, evaluated.Metadata will be revised based on testing and analysis.
Rachel Heery, Lois Mai Chan, Dianne Hillmann, Karen Coyle are a few names in the metadata profession that have been very instrumental in moving libraries forward. Roy Tennant is another. Hillmann, Coyle, and Tennant all have excellent blogs on metadata.The two articles on this slide are probably the most cited in all of the literature on metadata and were very helpful for this project. Stated in so many articles is the fact that “Digital libraries are rapidly becoming a preferred source for information and documentation. Both at research and industry levels, DLs are the most referenced sources.” (Malizia, et al., 2010).A. Malizia, P. Bottoni, & S. Levialdi. (2010, Dec.). Generating collaborative systems for digital libraries: a model-driven approach. Information Technology and Libraries. 29(4) 171-186. Chicago, American Library Association.
Here are some links to tools to help with metadata projects.If you don’t have access to the online version of the RDA Toolkit, there is a text version available here:http://www.rdatoolkit.org/constituencyreview
Here are a few rows of the metadata application profile.M = MandatoryA = Mandatory if applicable, otherwise ok to leave nullDecisions will be made on what fields to display and what fields to hide. The administrative data and preservation data will be the elements that will be hidden.
Some of the next steps to improve the project would be to insert the rules and guidelines that are specific to each metadata element.
Loretta Staal LIBR 281 December 7, 2010 Metadata Project for a School Yearbook Collection
What is the collection? School yearbooks from 9 different schools in the area High schools, middle schools, a military academy for boys From 1921 to present Military academy just celebrated its centennial anniversary Some titles are from early schools in the area that are now closed Approximately100 volumes in the library’s collection + Manuscripts, scrapbooks, letters, newspapers, films, and artifacts
Importance of Yearbooks Genealogical significance Important educational history Historic city images, people, fashion, events Invisible—collection is essentially hidden from view Access is in person by appointment only History Room is cramped This is not a browsing collection For reference only—cannot check-out
Yearbook Collection in Carlsbad City Library History Room
Constraints to the Project Old pre-AACR2 MARC records Minimal subject headings Equipment Tight budgets Training Copyright restrictions http://www.unc.edu/~unclng/WEBPAGEINDEXCOPYCORNER.htm Privacy issues
Solution Build a dream team of support & expertise Start with a small collection of yearbooks Select metadata schema: DCMES Choose the core elements Title, contributor, subject, etc. Define application profile Select controlled vocabularies: LCSH, TGM, DDC, etc. Set content rules: RDA Choose content management system: CONTENTdm
Methodology Scan materials Preserve files and documents, name files, back up Upload to server Create metadata application profile, templates Create and edit metadata in CONTENTdm Analyze metadata Test and evaluate, revise, prioritize, compromise!
Literature Review Heery, R. & Patel, M. (2000). Application profiles: mixing and matching metadata schemas. Ariadne. Accessed November 27, 2010 from http://www.ariadne.ac.uk/issue25/app-profiles/intro.html Chan, L. & Zeng, M. L. (2006, June). Metadata Interoperability and Standardization - a Study of Methodology, pt. 1: Achieving Interoperability at the Schema Level. D-Lib Magazine.12(6). Retrieved 9/27/2010 from http://www.dlib.org/dlib/june06/chan/06chan.html.
Key Points Metadata is flexible “There are no metadata police” (Heery & Patel) Metadata principles: User centered Interoperable Simple Reusable Modular Granular
Tools [CONTENTdm] CONTENTdm content management software: http://www.contentdm.org/ [DCMES] Dublin Core Metadata Element Set, Version 1.1: Reference Description: http://dublincore.org/documents/dces/ [DCMI] Dublin Core Metadata Initiative: http://dublincore.org/ [DCTERMS] DCMI Metadata Terms: http://dublincore.org/documents/dcmi-terms/ [LCSH] Library of Congress Authorities: http://id.loc.gov/authorities [RDA] RDA Toolkit: http://access.rdatoolkit.org/index.php [TEI] Text Encoding Initiative. A gentle introduction to XML: http://www.tei-c.org/release/doc/tei-p5-doc/en/html/SG.html P5: Guidelines for Electronic Text Encoding and Interchange:http://www.tei-c.org/release/doc/tei-p5-doc/en/html/index.html [TGN] Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names Online: http://www.getty.edu/research/conducting_research/vocabularies/tgn/ [XML] Extensible Markup Language (XML): http://www.w3.org/XML/
Next steps Add to the MAP the applicable RDA references to help with metadata creation. Decide what to digitize next. Refine the metadata to separate the administrative metadata from the descriptive metadata. Look for ways to eliminate redundancy. Listen to the users of the metadata—the creators and the consumers Analyze metadata Test and evaluate, revise, prioritize, compromise!
Thank you I hope to make this project a reality. Maybe you will see it online in the future. Thank you for listening to my presentation. Please let me know if you have any questions. It has been a pleasure to be in class with you. Loretta Staal, firstname.lastname@example.org