During my 8-month co-op term in 2021/2022, I have been working as a Digital Projects Student Librarian at UBC Library Digitization Centre. The UBC Library Digitization Centre embraces new technologies, methods of access, workflows and preservation strategies while building sustainable digital collections to support and enrich the educational, cultural, and economic endeavors of the University, the people of British Columbia and communities beyond.
One of my co-op tasks is to standardize the metadata in the Alma Mater Society (AMS) Image Collection and get the metadata ready for publishing on the UBC Library’s Open Collections, as well as migrating to a new digital asset management system. Thanks to the efforts of the Digital Initiatives Unit and AMS Archives, the AMS Image Collection has been available on UBC Library’s Open Collections since April 1st, 2022. This digital collection consists of digitized photographs from the earliest days of the University until the present day and presents a visual record of the AMS’s growth and development in the past decades.
Homepage of the AMS Image Collection on the Open Collections
In this project, I familiarized myself with the metadata manual prepared by the Centre as well as the controlled vocabularies such as TGM and LCSH. I edited around 20 metadata fields of more than 4,100 historical photographs from the AMS of the University of British Columbia Vancouver. The following example (digital identifier: 8806) highlights the selected fields and explains why I needed to clean the field.
|Field||Initial entry||Updated entry||Reasons/ Remarks|
|Title||Christopher Roach, 2014/2015, Representative for Board of Governors (BoG)||[2014-2015 Student Council member]||· Describe the resource while including relevant keywords
· Be consistent with the syntax of other similar records
|Alternative Title||`||· Remove unnecessary punctuation mark|
|Creator||Artona||Artona Group||· Be consistent with the name without authority record|
|Date Created||2014||2014||· Copy directly from the date appears in the Date Created field into the Sort Date field|
|Subject||Student Council||Student organizations; Committees; College administrators||· Take subject headings from the TGM because the type of this collection item is an image|
|Description||1 photograph: colour||BOG Rep||· Mention the role of this student council member to give viewers more details|
|Format||jpeg||image/jpeg||· Take terms with the hierarchical levels from the IANA MIME Media Types Vocabulary|
|Personal Names||Chris Roach||Roach, Christopher||· Follow the syntax of “[last name], [first name]” to enter the names of people who appear as the subject of the resource|
|Rights||Images provided for research and reference use only. Permission to publish, copy, or otherwise use these images must be obtained from the Alma Mater Society: http://www.ams.ubc.ca/studentsociety/archives/||Images provided for research and reference use only. Permission to publish, copy, or otherwise use these images must be obtained from the Alma Mater Society: https://www.ams.ubc.ca/archives/||· Update the URL of the AMS Archives in this Rights statement|
|Publisher – Digital||Vancouver : University of British Columbia Library||· Indicate the University of British Columbia Library as the publisher of this digital object|
I am glad to see that the AMS Image Collection’s metadata has been polished. I hope the edited metadata helps the user better understand the collection item and find the relevant resources. Thanks to this project, I have gained more opportunities of using spreadsheets and OpenRefine in cleaning metadata, and I have acquired various data cleaning techniques to fix inconsistencies in metadata. I look forward to another metadata cleanup project.