UF Libraries : Creating New Digital Collections (Aggregations) in SobekCM

Material Information

UF Libraries : Creating New Digital Collections (Aggregations) in SobekCM
Taylor, Laurie N.
Perry, Laura
Place of Publication:
Gainesville, FL
George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Publication Date:
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Subjects / Keywords:
Curator tools
Curator guides


At UF, each digital collection is under the purview of one or more Curators or Program Directors, with collaborative support from the Head of Digital Development & Web Services and/or Digital Humanities Librarian. For scholarly digital projects and archives, teaching faculty partner and collaborate with Curators/Program Directors following the processes for their collections. This documentation provides an overview on aggregations in relation to collection management, curatorial processes, steps for creating new aggregations, and steps and support for ongoing support for aggregations.
General Note:
Initial document loaded Sept. 2013. Minor update on 8/1/2014, and major update on 9/26/2014 to reflect Curator Tools which make the process of creating and tracking aggregations very simple. Updated 2/14/2019 to correct bad links and minor errors that remained from process before the curator tools existed.

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University of Florida
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University of Florida
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The author dedicated the work to the Commons by waiving all of his or her rights to the work worldwide under copyright law and all related or neighboring legal rights he or she had in the work, to the extent allowable by law.

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Page 1 of 4 Overview Any collection of items into a distinct searchable or browseable set is an item aggregation. This includes collections, subcollection s, institutions, exhibits, etc. Each item aggregation has its own home page and the search types and browse type s can be defined for that page. While mo st the settings are editable th r o ugh the online in terface, editing the home pages and other design files currently requires network/file access to the design subfolder under the web application. In addition to technical functionality at the aggr egation level, r esearch on digital libraries digital scholarship, and digital publishing demonstrates that user s prefer contextualized or themat ic collections. T hematic research collections bring together digitized materials, contextual and supporting research materials, scholarly contributions, and other resources to create a re search resource. 1 User s prefer t hematic collections because the collections hav e cont ext and coherence, making them more sensible and usabl e This leads to higher usage rates in terms of quantity of views and visits, and supports a higher quality o f usage with collections that are more understandable by users and used in more complex and beneficial ways by users At UF, each d i gital c ollectio n is under the purview of one or more Curator s or Program Director s with collaborative support from the Head of Digital Devel opment & Web Services a nd/or Di gital Humanities Librarian For scholarly d i gital projects and archives, teaching faculty partner and coll a b or a te with Curator s / Program Directors following the processes for their collections. E xample s : Florida Digital Newspaper Library: o I nc l udes materials directly within the su bject scope for the PK Yonge Library of Florida History and Journalism and materials from partners o Curators: Jim Cusick and Pat rick Reakes o Collaborators: Mark Sullivan and Laurie Taylor Digital Library of the Caribbean: o I ncludes materials from the Latin American Collections, other UF collections, dLOC Partners, Scholars, and affiliates o Program Directors : Brooke Wooldridge ( Laurie Taylor technical) o Curators: Curators for all collections at all institutions Curators often request new aggregations for new topical g roupings for their materials. For example, newer aggregations include the Freedom Summer Oral Histories within the Oral History Collections and the Early American Children i gital Collection within the Baldwin. Curators also often request new aggregations as prototypes for grant proposals, as virtual collections that bring together digit al versions of materials held in different p hysical collections, and for many other reasons. 1 See Palme r, Thematic Research Collections


Page 2 of 4 Steps for Creating New Digital Collections (Aggregations) Step 1: Curator Requests To c reate a new digital collection ( which is really an ag gregation of digital resources; see more on terminology below), a Curator cont a cts one of the SobekCM Administrators with basic information on the new aggregation Step 2: Administrators Create C o llection in SobekCM Liaising for Any C o ncerns Administrators in SobekCM have the system level permissions to create new aggregations. 2 T o create a new aggregation, an Administrator : S igns in to mySOBEK (myUFDC, myDLOC, etc.) S elects Item Aggregations from the Admin menu Completes the Item Aggregation form wit h the required and as much optional information as possible: o Code (aggregation code that appears in the URL) o Type (Institutional, Sub institutional; Group, Collection, Subcollection) o Parent (parent aggregation, containing the new aggregation) o Name (full and short; shows in bre adcrumbs, item descriptions, etc. ) o External Link ; Descrip tion (if applicable) o Options to select if : Active and/or Hidden Step 3 : Administrators Update the Design Files and Permission s for Collection Management After creating the aggregation code in SobekCM, a new folder with the aggregation code is created in the aggregation folder within the web design folder. 3 For the design files, Administrators: Create the home page HTML file, following the t echnical requirements Create the aggregation banner (recommended 900 pixels wide and under 150 pixels tall), or load the banner provided by the Cur ator For permissions and coll ection management, Administrators: Check th e Curator s myUFDC account a dd Curator righ t s for the new aggregation Confirm with the Curator on any others, and add appropriate rights for the new aggregation o With C urator rights, the Curator can then assign the new aggregation to any items they submit ted, submit, and any items in another agg r eg a tion for which they are a Curator Provides s up port for standard integration and promotional process es: o Contact Cataloging to catalog the new aggregation as a digital coll ection or request that the Curator contacts Cataloging 2 D o cumentation : http://ufdc. 3 See:


Page 3 of 4 o Reco mmends promoting the collection following the standard process: http://uf 4 Step 4 : Finalization of New Aggregation Creation Administrator s and Curato r s finalize the aggregation homepage, banner, and other design and functional elements, where the Cura tors can see the functional aggregation to easily see changes within this discussion period. Curators and Administrators also confirm finalization of the initial stage for creating the new aggregation by confirming on updates for any e xisti ng items in other digital collections that should be and are not yet in the new aggregation For instance, the Ethnic News papers from Florid a Col l ection ( ) was created to bring together new and many already digitized items in the new aggregation. Next Steps and Ongoing Support Online Presence and Materials For aggregation design up d ates to the aggregation home page text and the banner and other elements Curators contact Administrators for the updates. In the future, more of these updates may be supported with the online tools. Curators contact Administrators to grant additional rights to other users for the collection, make changes, and for any other questions or concerns. Production For production processes, all internal users have access to the list of aggregation codes in the system. The process of inputting items into the system and project production w orkflows includes adding all aggregation codes indicated by the Cura tor (querying the Curator for the aggregations codes, if needed) The list of aggregation codes can be sorted by date added (link only viewable with permissions, and when logged in) : http://ufdc. internal/aggregations/list/date 4 See the template for news releases: and prior news releases:


Page 4 of 4 Terminology: Collections and Aggregations The Sob ekCM Open Source digital repository software does not overly restrict collections. Instead of a rigid hierarchy with a limited number of levels for nesting collections and subcollections SobekCM treats all collections as Aggregations c an be understood as being like the w ay Gmail handles email, with where items can have many labels and sub labels. This is instead of how Outlook handles email, w ith fixed are nested. Each aggregation represents a col lection grouping at some level like a label that collects the items together and allows for searching across the collected items Each aggregatio n may be called a library, collection, subcollection, o r another name as preferred These are all aggregations and all function the same way and function consistently in relation to each other, which allows for subcollection style functionality. For technologica l function s each aggregation does sev eral things: Groups materials together in a collection type structure for ease of cross searching Supports specific searching a nd advanced searching options for that specific aggregation Supports an aggregation home page or landing page to orient the user, with subpages for additional information and help A single aggregation can exist in several other aggregations groups as these are merely aids for searching and organizing. Each aggregation may contain other aggregations which can displa y as subcollections. A single item can belong to several of these sub groupings under the same larger containing aggregation as well a ggregations in other aggregation group ings There wi ll only be one instance of the digital resource even if they item is present in many aggregations wi thin the system 5 5 Text adapted from this section: