Omeka Metadata Guide
Created by Daniel Fandino
Maintained by LEADR under the direction of Alice Lynn McMichael
Last Updated: 10/1/2021
In this handout, you will learn about the Dublin Core metadata scheme. Metadata is data about a data -in this case it is information about the digital items used in Omeka. This will help visitors to your Omeka exhibit understand the origins of the Items used as the centerpieces of your exhibit by allowing you to properly document and categorize your digital content. This will enable others to follow your research as well as acknowledging the ownership and origins of the items.
What is Metadata in Omeka?
In Omeka, Items are the digital representations of resources used on the platform. Each historical artifact you use (such as a letter, photograph, painting, or newspaper article) should be an Item in your exhibit. You will provide information about these resources in Omeka using the Dublin Core metadata scheme. Dublin Core is a set series of 16 categories that allows for consistent information about items to be carried across a variety of platforms and uses.
Items are usually(but not always) digital representations of physical Items. The item can be used to represent either an image itself or something depicted by the item. For example, a painting of George Washington can be used as a digital item to represent the painting itself or to represent George Washington as the historical figure.
It is important to note that you are not always expected to be able to complete every entry for metadata. The importance of Omeka metadata is to properly cite where you obtained your research sources and develop an understanding of how items and data are referenced in digital archives. The goal is to fill out the information to the best of your ability.
Explanation of Dublin Core Elements
Here we provide a brief explanation of the Elements used in Dublin Core. We heavily encourage you to visit the Dublin Core website if you want a more detailed explanation of their metadata scheme.
Title: A name the Item is known by. This can be the title of a book, the title of a work of art, the make and model of a vehicle, photograph name, or building name.
- The Odyssey
- 1967 Chevrolet Corvair
- Vision and the Scarlet Witch 1
- Migrant Mother
- Photograph of the Gettysburg battlefield
- Washington Crossing the Delaware
- Final Fantasy VII
Subject: Short one or two word keyword description of the Item. Multiple keywords can be used.
- comic book
- video game
Description: A one or two line description of the Item.
- Comic book adventures of the superheroes Vision and Scarlet Witch
- A painting depicting George Washington crossing the Delaware River
- A photo depicting wounded soldiers during the Meuse-Argonne offensive
- A 64 bit home video game console with two controllers and the Legend of Zelda game cartridge
Creator: The names of the persons and/or group responsible for creating the Item.
- Steve Englehart (writer) and Richard Howell (artist).
- Apple Computers
- Ford Motor Company
- Abraham Lincoln
Source: The source where the Item was obtained from. Note that this can represent where the digital item is sourced from, not where the physical item is located or where it was sold.
- Library of Congress: https://www.loc.gov/collections/
- Marvel Comics: https://www.marvel.com/comics/issue/18455/vision_and_the_scarlet_witch_1985_1
Publisher: The group or company responsible for making the Item public or available. This includes manufacturers, government agencies, and corporations.
- Microsoft Corporation
- Marvel Worldwide
- Random House
- Michigan State University
- U.S. Department of State
- Nintendo of America
Date: A date associated with this Item. It can be the date of publication, the range when a video game console was in production, or the day a photo was taken. If the exact date is not known a year or general range can be used.
- October 1, 1985
- July 4, 1776
- Approximately 1860-1864
- January 3rd 1988 to April 12th, 1991
Rights: The legal rights involved in using this Item. This is important as using Items under copyright need to be noted. There are some protections under the principle of Fair Use for the educational use of copyrighted images but it is vital to mark the known copyright holders, or if the Item can be freely used. In Fair Use, copyrighted material in the US can be reused for certain purposes without needing to get special permission from the rights holder.
- No known restrictions or copyright claims
- Copyright Marvel Worldwide Inc.
- Copyright The Walt Disney Company
- Public domain
Relation: If the Item is part of a set or related directly to other Items, such as by being part of a book series, tracks on an album, photos in a set taken the same day or as part of a series, or a video game in a series.
- Track 3 on The Unforgettable Fire by U2
- Photograph 14 in a series by Ansel Adams
- Book 1 in a trilogy. Other books in the series are The Two Towers and The Return of the King
- The seventh installment of the Final Fantasy video game series. Other games in the series are I to VI and VIII to XV.
Format: The physical dimensions if the Item is an object. This can also be the format of a photo or computer file.
- 32 pages. 6-5/8 inches wide by 10-1/4 inches.
- 1.6 MB jpg file
- Silver lithographic print, 5 inches by 5 inches
- Steel and glass, 10 feet by 18 feet
Language: The primary language of the Item. This can also be the language of the creator in case of a work of art or the language of the nation of manufacture.
Type: What is the primary type of the Item? Text as in a book, text and images as in a magazine, a piece of computer software, or a sound recording.
- Text and image
Identifier: A unique way to identify this Item. This can be a library call number, a ISBN book code, a serial number, or a model number.
- ISBN-10: 1250251095
- ISBN-13: 978-1250251091
- NCC 1701-D
- 117th Congress (2021 - 2022), 1st Session, Issue: Vol. 167, No. 30
Coverage: The geographic region and/or time period covered by the Item. If it is a physical object, this can be where it is located. If it is a printed Item, where it was printed, where it was intended to be sold. Coverage can be the location depicted in a photograph or painting. It can also be the region specific to where a car, video game console, or DVD player is sold. This may also be the time period the item was made/used in, or a time period associated with the Item.
- Rockefeller Center, New York, United States
- Oxford, England
- Novi Grad, Sokovia
- Imperial Palace, Tokyo, Japan
- North America
- Antietam National Battlefield; Sharpsburg, Maryland
- Early Woodland Period
- Roaring Twenties
Photograph of the cover of Vision and the Scarlet Witch 1 used for educational purposes. The item used in this example is the physical comic book depicted in the image.
Title: Vision and the Scarlet Witch 1
Subject: American comics, Superheroes
Description: Comic book adventures of the superheroes Vision and Scarlet Witch.
Creator: Steve Englehart (writer) and Richard Howell (artist).
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Date: October 1, 1985
Rights: Copyright Marvel Worldwide Inc.
Relation: Part of a twelve issue limited series. Vision and the Scarlet Witch issues 2-12, 1985.
Format: Print, 32 pages. 6-5/8 inches wide by 10-1/4 inches.
Type: Image and text.
Identifier: none available.
Coverage: United States
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- Omeka Documentation
- Dublin Core