Having solid metadata is essential to preserving information about the digital object, and displaying it correctly. The three types of metadata relevant to digitization projects are descriptive, administrative, and structural. Descriptive metadata contains information about the object's content, including title, author, notes, etc., used for discovery of the digital object. Administrative metadata contains information that will aid in management and preservation, including the file type, when it was created, etc. Structural metadata is the data describing how the object is displayed in a digital environment.
General best practices and guidelines
- A Framework of Guidance for Building Good Digital Collections, 3rd edition, December 2007, NISO. Pages 63-85 contain resources and a comprehensive list of metadata standards
- Best Practices for CONTENTdm and Other OAI-PMH Compliant Repositories: Creating Sharable Metadata, 2012, OCLC
- Cornell University Digital Imaging Tutorial: Metadata section
- A chart exhibiting differences between Structural, Descriptive, and Administrative Metadata
- Carl Lagoze and Sandra Payette, "Metadata: Principles, Practices, and Challenges," in Moving Theory into Practice: Digital Imaging for Libraries and Archives, Mountain View, CA : Research Libraries Group, 2000; pp. 84-100
- Fourth DELOS Workshop Image Indexing and Retrieval, August 28-30, 1997: San Miniato. http://www.ercim.org/publication/ws-proceedings/DELOS4/index.html
- NISO/CLIR/RLG Technical Metadata Elements for Images Workshop, August 18-18, 1999: Washington, DC.
- Metadata University of North Texas Digital Projects Unit
Sample institutional metadata standards
Library of Congress
- Tony Gill, Anne J. Gilliland, Maureen Whalen, and Mary S. Woodley, Introduction to Metadata, Edited by Murtha Baca, Getty Museum
- Consortium for Academic and Research Libraries in Illinois (CARLI), Guidelines for Metadata, 2011
If you have any suggestions for items or resources to be added to this toolkit, please leave us a comment.