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 As part of Preservation Week, we're highlighting the Dartmouth Library programs that can help you preserve your professional, personal, family, and community collections.

Today we’ll hear from Digital Scholarship Librarian Jen Green about how we can preserve Open Access articles, student publications and more.

Describe your role in the Library.

I work with faculty, students, and staff to help them share the results of their research, scholarship, teaching, and learning. I am involved in the planning, design, and development of Dartmouth’s emerging online scholarly repository, the Dartmouth Digital Commons.

Tell us about the Dartmouth Digital Commons.

The Dartmouth Digital Commons (DDC) is an open repository for Dartmouth produced scholarly, research, and educational output.

The collection that I work with most closely is the Open Dartmouth: Faculty Open Access Articles collection. Open Dartmouth provides a space for implementing the Dartmouth Faculty Open Access Policy. This enables anyone in the world to find, read and download legally available, full-text materials authored by Dartmouth faculty.

Working papers, the results of locally held symposia, and student-led publications are other examples of scholarship that can be published- and preserved- through the DDC.

How does the Dartmouth Digital Commons support preservation?

DDC is a robust system that supports high-level backups of content. This means that if the system fails, the content has been saved multiple ways and multiple times so that it can remain available.

DDC supports preservation by providing a stable location for Dartmouth student, faculty, and staff to share their work. We know that there are many places online to share our work with the world, but the future of those services and resources is not always certain.  When Dartmouth Library makes an investment in collecting and managing physical and digital items, the Library commits to preserving those items long-term. DDC is a system that the Library has researched and vetted as one that is safe for gathering, storing, and presenting items now and into the future.

Who can use the Dartmouth Digital Commons?

Because is it a fully open repository, anyone in the world can search and download content from DDC.  

However, if users would like to share their own work on DDC, they must be affiliated with Dartmouth as a student, faculty, or staff member.  There are a variety of ways to use the DDC to share your work. Some examples so far:

  • Dartmouth student publication editors are able to openly publish student journals.
  • Dartmouth faculty in Arts & Sciences, Geisel School of Medicine, and the Thayer School of Engineering can submit their final peer reviewed versions of closed access articles or final versions of open access articles to Open Dartmouth.
  • Dartmouth Librarians recently adopted a Dartmouth Library Staff Open Access Policy and will be sharing selected published or presented works within the DDC.

Other Dartmouth users have expressed interest in sharing content with the world. We are working with new communities for sharing student projects, department scholarship and more. Collections continue to grow and become more diverse.  We always welcome questions about whether items Dartmouth student, faculty, and staff would like to share would be appropriate for the DDC.

How do I get started?

  1. Send us a note with your question or ideas for sharing: dartmouthdigitalcommons@groups.dartmouth.edu
  2. Dartmouth Faculty may send us recently published articles on the “Submit Work” link located on this page: https://digitalcommons.dartmouth.edu/facoa/
  3. Read more about us and find our contact information: https://researchguides.dartmouth.edu/scholcomm

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As part of Preservation Week, we're highlighting the Dartmouth Library programs that can help you preserve your professional, personal, family, and community collections.

Today, we’ll hear from Media Collections and Preservation Librarian Noah Skogerboe about how the library can help you preserve your audio-visual collections.

Describe your role in the Library.

As a member of the  Jones Media Center team, I provide access to our media and equipment collections and assist students, faculty and staff with media projects. I also work on audio-visual preservation projects, both for library collections and items belonging to students, staff, faculty and the local community.

What types of media can you preserve?

Much of what I handle are “obsolete” formats: things that do not have readily available playback mechanisms. For instance, we have playback equipment for VHS, Beta, Umatic video, Hi8 video, DVCAM, MiniDV, laserdisc, 8mm film, Super8 film, 16mm film, DAT tapes, various sizes of analog magnetic tape…the list goes on and on!  

Can you describe the connection between "preserving" and "migrating" media?

Older video and audio formats are decaying so rapidly that all of their recorded information will soon be lost if we do not convert it to another more stable medium. The practice of transferring something to another more stable format is called “migration”, and its something that preservationists have been doing for a long time. For instance, some of the oldest audio recordings were made on wax cylinders. These recordings are so fragile that every playback causes some damage and the sound quality gets worse and worse. Wax cylinders were migrated onto high quality reel-to-reel magnetic audio tape in the 1970s in order to preserve the content for future listeners. Now those reel-to-reel tapes are in a similar condition of fragility, and we are migrating content onto high quality digital files. So, preservation and migration go hand in hand. When you migrate media for preservation you always use the best quality formats available.

So, once I have converted my old media to a digital file has it been preserved?

Migration to a high quality digital file is only the first step in the preservation process- now you have something new to preserve. Digital files must be carefully managed over time. Storing multiple copies of your media file in different locations- such as on an external hard drive and “in the cloud”- is one important way to ensure your media’s survival into the future.

What preservation services do you offer to the Dartmouth community?

If a researcher needs access to something in the Library’s collection that is in an old media format, I will convert the item into a digital format. I can then provide digital access to the content for the researcher.

Jones Media staff can help empower you to migrate your own older media to digital files. We have two editing suites that have all the equipment necessary to digitize audio and video cassette formats, as well as vinyl records. We are available to provide instructions and assistance throughout the migration process.

The Library also offers digitization services for a fee, but because resources are limited, we prioritize efforts that support student and faculty scholarship.

I am also happy to consult and advise on best practices for preservation of media in any format.

Who can access these services?

Our media preservation services are available to anyone who comes through the doors of the Jones Media Center. Happily, all members of the Dartmouth community, including students, staff, faculty and alumni are welcome to avail themselves of all that we have to offer.

How do I get started?

Come and see us at the Jones Media Center, visit our web page to learn more about the equipment and services that we have to offer, or email us at jones.media.center@dartmouth.edu or me personally at noah.b.skogerboe@dartmouth.edu with any questions!

 

Digital Asset Lifecycle

As part of Preservation Week, we're highlighting the Dartmouth Library programs that can help you preserve your professional, personal, family, and community collections.

Today, we’ll hear from Physical Sciences Librarian Lora Leligdon about how the library can help you preserve your research data.

 

Describe your role in the Library. 

I work in the Kresge Library with others across the library and campus to support research data management (RDM).  RDM spans the entirely of the research lifecycle, and promotes efficient and reproducible research by utilizing best practices to manage, store, and share data. You can find out more about our research support services for RDM on our website and in our research guide.

What does RDM have to do with preservation?

Good RDM practices follow the FAIR data principles - a set of guiding principles in order to make data findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable (Wilkinson et al., 2016).   By following these principles, we can help ensure that research data is soundly managed, shared, and preserved for long-term use.  Preserving research data prevents data loss and enables long-term discovery, access, and use in a sustainable format. RDM preservation follows some of the same fundamentals as digital preservation: appraisal, identification, organization, documentation, integrity, and sustainability (such as file formats or software obsolescence).  Basically, digital preservation and RDM share a common goal: to make valuable information and data accessible and usable.

Why is preserving research data important?

Preserving research data safeguards the huge investment of time and resources used in creation of the scientific and scholarly record.   Well-managed research data is valuable and needed not only for reproducible research, but also to meet some funder and publisher mandates. Additionally some data are unique and cannot be replaced if lost.  Preserving research data is critical in preserving the scholarly record.

What preservation services do you offer to the Dartmouth community?

We’ll work with faculty, staff, and student researchers during any phase of the research lifecycle - starting with their data management plan and working through to the deposit of data in a trusted disciplinary or general repository.  We can assist with writing data management plans for sponsored projects, data organization best practices, metadata, storage, sharing, and preservation options. We also work closely with Research Computing to assist with computational and storage solutions.

Forward RDM planning is key and it’s never too early to start thinking about your data and preservation.

Who can access these services?

We will work with any member of the Dartmouth community – from helping undergraduates manage their senior thesis data to faculty sponsored research projects.   We also provide support across a variety of disciplines, including the arts, humanities, social sciences, STEM, and biomedical fields.

How do I get started?

For help with your data management needs, contact us at researchdatahelp@groups.dartmouth.edu, or start by contacting your subject librarian.   We are available to help you understand your data management needs and recommend best practices for keeping your data usable, now and into the future.