Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Digital Media Repository Passes the Quarter-Million Mark

Since its creation, the DMR has sustained a growth rate of more than one new collection per month so that it currently contains 77 collections, plus numerous subcollections. As a result of this aggressive digitization effort, on May 26, 2010, the Digital Media Repository crossed the threshold of one quarter-million digital items – to be exact, 253,322 items are now available in the DMR collections via 92,829 individual and compound records.

To put this growth rate into perspective, Ball State University Libraries have created an average of 68 new records per day, and have placed one new item online and available to the public through the DMR every 2.5 minutes for over five years. This is an unprecedented rate of digital collection building for an institution of our size.

The key to our efficiency and overall success has been the model of interdepart-mental cooperation that was built into the project’s structure. The DMR is a joint project of three separate units, each of which have personnel who lend their particular brand of expertise in the collection building process.

The first is Archives and Special Collections where the archivists research, describe, and prepare the materials for digitization. The second is Metadata and Digital Initiatives, with personnel who digitize the artifacts, create the metadata, and construct and then populate the DMR collections. Third is Library Information Technology Services, where personnel maintain the CONTENTdm content management system and Web servers and create customizations or enhancements as needed.

Representatives of the three departments form the DMR Working Group, chaired by John B. Straw, Assistant Dean for Digital Initiatives & Special Collections. He also serves as the DMR
project coordinator.

For more information, contact James A. Bradley, Head of Metadata and Digital Initiatives, JABradley2@bsu.edu, 765-285-5718.