Richer, Better and More Sustainable: Upgrading Metadata in CONTENTdm



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



Since 2009 the University of Houston Libraries have expanded access to the rare and special collections through the University of Houston Digital Library (UHDL). Three years and nearly 50,000 digital items later, UHDL has the potential to be a powerful resource for researchers of all kinds. To facilitate this kind of research, users rely on UHDL metadata to be robust, reliable, retrievable and sharable. While the current state of metadata in the digital library allows for browsing and searching, missing and inconsistent metadata restrict both discoverability and interoperability. As a result of these barriers, the Metadata and Bibliographic Services Department is initiating a project to audit and upgrade the existing metadata produced for the UHDL. This presentation outlines the audit and upgrade process to date. It provides an overview of our methodology, including focus group interviews, data inspection, and benchmarking. It also identifies key recommendations and strategies for upgrading the existing UHDL metadata, including guidelines for future UHDL metadata creation. The presentation will focus on the techniques we have used to integrate the upgrade process with the CONTENTdm Project Client. It will also include a discussion on experiments we have conducted in CONTENTdm to update and improve our workflow. The structure of the presentation is designed to offer suggestions to other institutions interested in conducting a metadata audit, particularly those institutions operating CONTENTdm.


This presentation was given at the CONTENTdm User Group Meeting, Seattle, WA, August 9, 2013.


metadata, evaluation, assessment, Metadata, Evaluations, Assessments