By Mēgan Oliver
New year, new goals. We’re planning several internal projects of note, with a few grants and lots of ongoing collections work thrown into the mix. Primarily, we’re starting a collection-wide metadata assessment for all 261 of our current collections. This assessment will take approximately 4 months with one full-time librarian and two part-time professional staff dividing the work. Once the assessment is complete, we will prioritize ‘worst first’ and begin the oversized task of remedying metadata mistakes, unicode/machine readable transliteration problems, ADA accessibility issues, and Dublin Core mapping mishaps. Human error runs through the work that is cataloging and metadata entries, and we’re not immune! This planned overhaul will most likely take upward of two years with current staffing levels.
Also on the docket: library-wide digital preservation. Director of Digital Research Services, Kate Boyd, will be leading this effort. Our first meeting this spring should bring together invested parties from South Carolina Political Collections, The Irvin Department of Rare Books and Special Collections, the UofSC Music Library, Moving Image Research Collections, Department of Oral Histories, Digital Research Services, and South Caroliniana Library.
Finally, we’re bringing the tenets of UX and UI to our work here in the department. Looking at digital exhibitions and digital humanities tools, we’re assessing what works best with our digital collections needs, staff skill sets, departmental budget, and time. We hope to offer a small suite of new DH options to our internal campus users, so aesthetically pleasing and fully functional web interfaces for our external users are created, with an eye towards what best suits the materials we’re presenting. Story Maps, Timeline, Scalar, and OxGarage are all under investigation for their potential uses with digital collections and exhibitions. At the end of spring, we hope to have some answers and a plan!
We’re invested in making our departmental process is clear and we enjoy using our blog to make everything we do as transparent and accessible as possible, for our readers, users, and colleagues outside of UofSC. Let us know if there’s something you’d like to hear about in the comments. Til next time!