Numerous advances in technology and tools have enabled libraries and archives to make collections visible and accessible – however, challenges to the process remain.
Digitization can be a complex process that requires decision-making, analysis, and planning when starting a project. Best practices for the process often include material selection criteria, technology, preservation measures, quality control, and enhancement procedures. After digitization, creating metadata or descriptive information requires not only librarians’ technical knowledge but also subject expertise. To evaluate and determine what information to retain to facilitate users finding content, it is essential to know the communities we serve.
Digitization and descriptive metadata combine to create new avenues for librarians and researchers to locate and utilize previously unavailable resources. Increasing collections’ discoverability not only broadens users’ access to content but also enriches their research experience.
This presentation will discuss strategies from two academic libraries with integrating digitization, metadata creation and reference services to enrich access and use of archival collections. The presentation will also feature a demonstration of a “Travel Digitization Kit” available from Southeast Florida Library Information Network (SEFLIN) to support digitization initiatives by member libraries.