Contribute a collection
The Digital Library for Earth System Education (DLESE) encourages library users, community members, collection builders and resource developers to contribute to the library. This not only grows and strengthens the library, it encourages the reuse and sharing of materials. This document is a reference guide for how to contribute collection to DLESE. To contribute individual resources not intended to be a collection, please see contribute a resource.
The benefits of contributing a collection include:
How to contribute
This section provides detailed information about contributing a collection. All steps must be completed before a collection is publicly accessible in DLESE. The length of time to create and contribute a collection varies widely depending on whether the collection already exists or if the collection is being newly created. The amount of time also depends on the type of collection and the support needs of the individuals or organizations building the collection. To facilitate contributing in a timely manner, please contact the DLESE Program Center (DPC) email@example.com early in the collection development and contribution process.
1. Determine if the collection is within scope of the DLESE collection
Read the DLESE Collection Scope and Policy Statement to determine if the collection is within scope of the DLESE collection. If the collection is not within scope, re-evaluate whether DLESE is the correct library for the collection or determine if the collection can be adjusted to fit the library scope.
2. Determine the DLESE collection type and its corresponding DLESE metadata format
Read collection types to determine the DLESE collection type and the corresponding DLESE metadata format. All collections in DLESE use a DLESE metadata format. Collection builders need to provide their metadata to DLESE in a DLESE metadata format.
3. Understand collection accessioning (adding) and deaccessioning (removing)
All collections are subject to the requirements outlined in the DLESE Accessioning and Deaccessioning Policy. This policy describes the accessioning and deaccessioning requirements for individual resources, collections and the DLESE Reviewed Collection.
4. Is membership in the DLESE Reviewed Collection (DRC) a collection goal?
DLESE includes collections of high quality teaching and learning materials which have been rigorously reviewed and evaluated according to published selection criteria. The rationale for establishing a DLESE Reviewed Collection (DRC) is to help library users find higher quality and reviewed teaching and learning materials, and to help resource creators achieve academic career recognition. If a collection is applying for membership in the DRC, read the DLESE Reviewed Collection best practices for more information on meeting the DRC criteria.
5. Create a collection scope statement
All collections require a scope statement that, in part, articulates the goals, themes and content of the collection. Existing collections may have already prepared such a document while new collections likely have not. To create a scope statement appropriate for DLESE, read writing scope statements. If help is needed, contact firstname.lastname@example.org. DLESE requires all collections to make their scope statements publicly accessible either by hosting the statement themselves or having DLESE host the statement.
6. Determine the required metadata fields for the collection's DLESE metadata format
The table below associates DLESE collection types and corresponding DLESE metadata formats to required metadata fields. To view required metadata fields and read an overview of each metadata format, follow the links in the table.
7. Create metadata records in the DLESE metadata format
Metadata records capture the information necessary to describe and discover items in DLESE. All metadata records, regardless of format or collection type, are required to be XML (eXtensible Markup Language) files.
Some collections may have metadata in a database or some other format. In this case, the collection builder works with DLESE staff to convert their metadata to the appropriate DLESE metadata format determined from step 2. If all required DLESE metadata is not present, some supplementary cataloging may need to be completed.
For collections with no metadata yet, records are created (cataloged) from scratch. To make these metadata records, collection builders can use the DLESE Collection System (DCS).
When creating metadata records, follow the metadata best practices that provide technical and content guidelines. If help is needed on using controlled vocabularies, developing collection and cataloging strategies (which URL to use), performing quality assurance, understanding cataloging best practices and using or installing the DLESE Collection System, please contact email@example.com.
8. Compile overarching collection information
All collections need to provide overarching collection information. Collection builders do this by working with DLESE staff to create a single collection-level metadata record. The required metadata fields are described in the collection metadata framework.
Additionally, DLESE needs to know if the collection should be sent on to the National Science Digital Library (NSDL) and if so, whether the collection wants to be an individual NSDL collection or part of the general DLESE collection. Either way, additional information is needed to participate in NSDL.
As an individual NSDL collection, the following is needed:
As part of the DLESE collection, the following is needed:
9. Send metadata records to the DLESE Program Center (DPC)
Once metadata records meet the metadata best practices, the records are ready to be sent to the DPC for a test ingest into the library. Transmittal of records can be done by:
If using the email method, please do not send individual attachments for each record; rather, group the records into a single attachment and send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If using the OAI method (see the OAI installation instructions), keep in mind that record transfers must:
If using other means, contact email@example.com.
10. Test the collection in DLESE systems and do final preparation for accessioning
After metadata records arrive, the following vitality tests are conducted:
The results of these tests are shared with the collection builder so that final issues for collections accessioning can be addressed. This testing takes time and is often iterative such that the collection builder is highly involved when the tests are being conducted. Upon successful completion of the tests, the collection is presented to the Collections Accessioning Taskforce for final approval.
11. Obtain collection approval via the Collections Accessioning Taskforce
Approval is required to become a DLESE collection as well as for acceptance into the DLESE Reviewed Collection.
Defining the Collections Accessioning Taskforce (CAT)
Approval process for collections and for membership in the DLESE Reviewed Collection (DRC)
Additional guidelines for accessioning
To maintain, manage and grow a collection once it has been accessioned, the DPC staff employ a collection management process. This means that the checks in step 10 are performed on new, updated and current records and the results of such checks are reported to the collection builder. It is expected that collection builders make "repairs" based on the reports. Problem records that are not corrected are removed from the library per the Collections Accessioning and Deaccessioning Policy. The deaccessioning process is described below.
Deaccessioning (removing records from the library) is most likely triggered by a review of automated integrity-checks (i.e. a check for broken links, etc.) on the URLs of all resources and collections. If a URL fails to respond to repeated attempts to connect over a reasonable interval of time, DPC staff notify the collection contact person. DLESE then expects the collection contact person to correct, update or remove the record. Deaccessioning can also be triggered by DLESE community member requests.
When a potential need for deaccessioning arises, deaccessioning criteria are applied by using DLESE policy and guideline documents. Deaccessioning decisions are made by the Collections Accessioning Taskforce (CAT).
How to view collections in DLESE
Collections (except news and opportunities collections ) are listed by name in the DLESE discovery system and browse pages. The collection menu (search and browse) is available from the DLESE homepage. News and opportunities collections are available in the News and Opportunities section of the library.
Last updated: 2005-01-10