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class 11 lesson plan

Creating Sustainable Digital Collections,
Part 2: Digital Preservation


This class follows up Class 10: Creating Sustainable Digital Collections, Part 1: Digital Issues by providing more in-depth coverage of digital preservation as it relates to the sustainability of library and archival collections. The class will consider foundational work, current research and development, technical strategies for digital objects, and a discussion of standards and tools to help students better understand the development of trusted registries and repositories.

Since the issues are complex and cannot be fully explored in this three-hour class, the class focuses on raising awareness within each of the components, as well as providing information to support further research and/or acting as an introduction to courses designed to provide more in-depth knowledge of digital preservation. The time noted for each lesson section is suggested and can be adjusted as necessary.

Digital preservation is a constantly evolving field. It is essential for instructors to ensure that they have the most up-to-date information. Some of the resources and topics listed in this lesson may be superseded by more current materials in a relatively short period.

The lesson is divided into six parts:

Part I: Foundational Work. An introduction to the foundational work that has driven most of the digital preservation development over the last ten years.

Part II: Research and Development. Discusses the relevant research and development activities of several organizations and initiatives, including the U.S. model, the U.K. model, and the ERPANET project.

Part III: Understanding Digital Objects. Discusses formats, preservation metadata, and longevity. The goal is to make students better understand digital objects and the associated metadata that serves a role in making them renderable over time.

Part IV: Technical Strategies. Addresses the various technical strategies for preserving digital objects. It is important to emphasize that no one strategy is the only valid answer for all digital objects; thus, this is not simply choosing one strategy over another.

Part V: Digital Repositories. In this section, students define and distinguish digital repositories, digital archives, and institutional repositories. The section also describes frameworks, papers, and projects that identify standardized approaches to digital preservation repositories capable of managing all kinds of digital objects over time.

Part VI: Digital Registries. Discusses the concept of new union databases of information that can be built to facilitate digital preservation.