INF 385S - Digital Library Principles and DevelopmentSchool of Information - The University of Texas at Austin
Spring, 2011

Course Description

Research, development, and evaluation issues in digital libraries, including collection development and digitization; provision of access to multimedia materials; access strategies and interfaces; metadata and interoperability; and the implications of digital libraries with respect to policy and social issues.

Course Objectives

At the end of this course, students should accomplish the following course objectives:

Required Books

There is one required text for this course:

Lesk, M. (2005). Understanding Digital Libraries. (2nd Edition) San Francisco, CA: Morgan Kaufmann. [ISBN: 1558609245] [On 3-day reserve in PCL: Z 692 C65 L47 2005]

The Lesk text is also available electronically through NetLibrary with your UT EID.

In addition, the following text is strongly recommended:

Morville, P. & Rosenfeld, L. (2006). Information Architecture for the World Wide Web (3rd Edition). Sebastopol, CA: O'Reilly Media. [ISBN: 0596527349] [On 3-day reserve in PCL: TK 5105.888 R67 2007]

There are also required and recommended supplementary readings, and other relevant Web resources, listed on the Resources page.

Course Expectations

Students are expected to attend all class sessions. You do not have to tell me if you must miss a class but be aware that it is difficult to actively participate in class if you aren't there, and part of your final course grade is based on class participation.

This is not a lecture course so active participation is particularly important. The course will provide many opportunities for participation through discussion of required readings, in-class activities, and group projects. It is important that you do the readings each week before class so that you can participate in, and get the most out of, the discussions.

Assignments and Grading

There are four assignments in this course. These assignments are intended to provide a way for you to further investigate topics covered in class, and to share what you've learned with the rest of the class. The assignments involve both investigating existing digital libraries and digital library topics, and working to help create a large, functional multimedia digital library. Each assignment is worth a specific number of points, as will be noted in the assignment details. Your cumulative score on all assignments will help determine your final grade for the course, with each assignment weighted like so:

Assignment 1 - Investigate a Digital Library (small group presentation) 15%
Assignment 2 - Co-Lead Readings Discussion (small group project) 15%
Assignment 3 - Build a Digital Library (class project) 35%
Assignment 4 - Investigate a Digital Library Topic (individual paper) 30%

Thus, the four assignments total 95% of your final grade. Another 5% of your final grade is based on class participation and other indicators of level of effort. As will be discussed later in the semester, Assignment 3 is a single group project in which the entire class works together to develop a working digital library. The grade you receive for that assignment will be based both on your individual contributions (you will participate on a couple of small group committees with specific responsibilities) and your cooperation and communication with the entire group on the project.

Most assignments will be due on varying class meeting dates that depend on the topic. Because most assignments are group assignments, late assignments will not be accepted. Assignment 4 will have a specific due date, and this assignment will only be accepted late if the instructor grants permission, at least 24 hours before the due date, for the student to turn the assignment in late, on an agreed-upon date. Except in extreme circumstances, this assignment will be docked several points for each day it is late.

Disability Accommodations

Any student with a documented disability (physical or cognitive) who requires academic accommodations should contact the Services for Students with Disabilities area of the Office of the Dean of Students at 471-6259 (voice) or 471-4641 (TTY for users who are deaf or hard of hearing) as soon as possible to request an official letter outlining authorized accommodations.

Course Schedule

See the Schedule page for a detailed list of the topics that will be covered each week during the course, as well as any readings or assignments that should be done.

©Gary Geisler
Last revised February 18, 2011