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University of Michigan School of Information


Digitization for Everybody

Paul Conway aims to create, vet with a group of highly experienced experts and consultants, and then publish modularlized learning resources that support standards-based digitization of cultural heritage resources (still image, audio, video). The modules (available online and via print-on-demand) are in part derived from two graduate-level courses offered at the University of Michigan School of Information (UMSI) over the past decade but have been transformed for self-study and self-assessment in classroom, independent workshop and digitization lab settings.

Modules will serve collectively as a toolkit for increasing awareness of digitization best practices and for mastering existing and emerging technical standards for digitization processes, workflows and technical metadata, along with critically important software tools for quality assessment and digitization priority-setting. The written aspect of the modules will be composed at the level of 12th grade English where all specialized jargon and technical terms are linked to glossaries. The modular units will include links to audio and video segments that provide supplemental explanations and demonstrations as well as examples of good and not-so-good outcomes of digitization processes. Each module will include multiple-choice self-assessment quizzes that reinforce learning and highlight the most important points to remember. 

The PI and some of the expert advisors will use some of the modules in classroom or workshop settings prior to open release under Creative Commons licenses. The University of Michigan will preserve all digital content and associated code in its well-supported data repository service.

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The amount of the award is $100,000 for UMSI for the project period. The grant is funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.