INFO 284-14
Seminar in Archives and Records Management
Topic: Digital Curation
Spring 2017 Syllabus

Dr. M. Winget
Office location: Online
Office Hours: By Appointment

Syllabus Links
iSchool eBookstore

Canvas Information: Courses will be available beginning January 26th, 6 am PT unless you are taking an intensive or a one unit or two unit class that starts on a different day. In that case the class will open on the first day that the class meets.

You will be enrolled into the Canvas site automatically.

Course Description

This course will provide an introduction to issues involved with appraisal, selection, retention, collection building, documentary strategy, and collection development in archival, library and museum materials. Students will gain a sense of digital curation context through readings, research, and discussion.

Course Requirements


  1. Participation (100 Points): is a chance for students to discuss the unit’s readings with their peers (in the case of the threaded forum discussions); and to digest their learning by finding relevant materials and projects on the web (in the case of blogging). Dependent on the readings / students: This will support all CLOs (1–7) and all Core Copetencies (F, H, N)
    1. Threaded Discussion Forums: 60 points (6 units / discussions x 10 points per unit) There will be 6 forum discussions, and each student will be responsible for posting to the board at least twice (getting 5 points per post): either starting a discussion or by providing a substantive response to someone else’s discussion.
    2. Posting to the Class Blog: 40 Points (4 blog posts / 5 points each; 4 comments on other students’ blog posts / 5 points each. Students can only get credit for one post/week). I will set up a class blog, where students will post blog entries, and other students will comment on those entries. 
  2. Individual Assignments (75 Points): Students will work independently to gain a deeper understanding of digital curation pitfalls and practices. Supports CLOs 456, 7, and Core Competencies F, H, N
    1. Horror Story Analysis (20 points):  Choose a horror story to report on from my pinboard at Please choose a story that is relevant to your interests and substantial enough to support discussion. Also please try to choose a story that no one else has already chosen. Write a substantive post in the designated Canvas forum. I will provide writing prompts on the course website.
    2. Evaluate Data Management Plans (20 points): I will post real‐world examples (anonymized!) of digital curation plans to Canvas. You are the librarian contacted for an evaluation of the plan. I will provide writing prompts on the course website.
    3. Dream Job: (20 points): Find 3-5 job ads that match your skillset and interests, and discuss how you’re using your time at SJSU to meet these requirements. Jobs need not be Digital Curation jobs (but, N.B., most jobs have digital curation comonents to them these days).
    4. Tool Review (15 points): Choose a tool or service that is interesting to you from my pinboard at Using Chris Prom’s tool reviews on his Practical E‐Records weblog ( as a guide (warning: they’re old!), write a review of the tool or service and post it to the designated forum in Canvas.
  3. Group Assignment: Final Project (125 Points): For your final project, you will work in a group to help solve a digital curation problem. Each group will find a project to work on (it's best when students use their own resources, but I will have some opportunities available), determine the nature and extent of the problem, make a plan to solve it, agree with your client and me about how much of the problem your group can solve over the course of the semester. This project supports CLOs 1237 and Core Competencies: F, H, N. 
    Elements of this project include: 
    1. Electing a "Project Manager" who will be the primary point of contact between the group and the client as well as with me. 
    2. Developing a digital curation profile and project plan - in which the group works with the client to develop a plan that completely solves the problem (you will not be expected to actually solve the problem in this short time-span of a semester, but you should leave the client with a functional plan for doing so). 
    3. Conducting a data interview and data assessment will help develop this plan. 
    4. Developing a work agreement between the group and the client, with contstand feedback, communication, and re-negotiation with the client to solidify this work agreement and set expectations. 
    5. Presentations: Think of it as Outreach / Marketing; Post to "Final Project" forum on Canvasand provide comments on other groups' marketing materials. 
    6. Project Overview / Report.
    7. Project 360: each student will provide a brief description of all other group members' contributions, including the PM. I will use this information to assign individual grades as I see fit. I am the only person who will see these posts. I will also check with clients about your group’s professionalism, competence, and accomplishments before I assign grades. 

Course Calendar

Week Main Activity Assignment
1 Course Introduction, Syllabus / Expectations / Technology Optional:

Disc #0: Introductions / Questions about syllabus
Unit 1
Intro to Concepts
2 Intro to Digital Preservation & Curation Unit #1 Forum Discussion Opens
3 Conceptual Models in Digital Curation and Preservation

Form Final Project Groups

Unit 2:
Data Management I: Creation & Collection
4 Intro to Data Management Plans Unit #2 Forum Discussion Opens
5 Ramifications, Born Digital Entities, Responsibilities, Ethics  
6 Appraisal / Collection Development Horror Story Analysis DUE
Unit 3
Data Management II: Repositories & Access
7 Digital Repository Infrastructure I Unit #3 Forum Discussion Opens
8 Digital Repository Infrastructure II Tools Review DUE
Unit 4
Data Management III: Representation
9 Metadata Models

Unit #4 Forum Discussion Opens

10 Context and Representation  
Unit 5
Data Management IV: Preservation
11 Preservation Strategies & Solutions I Unit #5 Forum Discussion Opens
12 Preservation Strategies & Solutions II Dream Job DUE
Unit 6
13 Data Use & Re-Use Unit #6 Forum Discussion Open
14 Scholarly Communication Data Management Plans DUE
Unit 7
Wrap Up
15 Wrap Up / Finish FInal Project Outreach Materials DUE to Unit 7 Forum so colleagues can oooh and aaaaah ove them. 
16 Turn in Final Project Final Project Report, 360 Project Evaluageion DUE

There are 300 possible points in this class.

  • A = 282 – 300 points
  • A- = 270 – 282 points
  • B+ = 261 – 269 points
  • B = 252 – 260 points
  • B- = 240 – 251 points
  • C = 210 – 239 points
  • F = Below 210 points


  • Class Participation (100 points: 33%)
  • Individual Assignments (75 points: 25%)
  • Group Final Project (125 points: 42%)

Grading Policies:

  • Assignments / Group Projects: All papers / group projects are due by 11:59PM (Pacific Time) on the due date specified in the syllabus.
  • Forum Discussion: Students may post questions / comments to the Unit Forum Discussion during the calendar period that material is being covered. Discussion forums typically open on the First Monday of the Unit at 12:01AM, and close on the last Sunday of the Unit at 11:59PM (Pacific)
  • Blogging: Students may get credit for only one blog post per week (that is, students can not wait until the last week to do all of the blog posts), but may comment on others’ posts whenever it’s relevant. Students will be responsible for tracking their progress on blog postings.

Course Workload Expectations

Success in this course is based on the expectation that students will spend, for each unit of credit, a minimum of forty-five hours over the length of the course (normally 3 hours per unit per week with 1 of the hours used for lecture) for instruction or preparation/studying or course related activities including but not limited to internships, labs, clinical practica. Other course structures will have equivalent workload expectations as described in the syllabus.

Instructional time may include but is not limited to:
Working on posted modules or lessons prepared by the instructor; discussion forum interactions with the instructor and/or other students; making presentations and getting feedback from the instructor; attending office hours or other synchronous sessions with the instructor.

Student time outside of class:
In any seven-day period, a student is expected to be academically engaged through submitting an academic assignment; taking an exam or an interactive tutorial, or computer-assisted instruction; building websites, blogs, databases, social media presentations; attending a study group;contributing to an academic online discussion; writing papers; reading articles; conducting research; engaging in small group work.

Course Prerequisites

INFO 284 has no prequisite requirements.

Course Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Identify the decision making process behind selection for preservation.
  2. Describe the evolution of digital curation theory and practice.
  3. Summarize the causes of deterioration of various types of information objects.
  4. Identify key concepts and standards in digital preservation, including the OAIS model and repository development.
  5. Define the principles of a workable preservation policy in libraries, archives, and corporate DAM settings.
  6. Identify and apply disaster planning, prevention, response, and recovery strategies.
  7. Locate and evaluate tools, research and other resources on preservation.

Core Competencies (Program Learning Outcomes)

INFO 284 supports the following core competencies:

  1. F Use the basic concepts and principles related to the selection, evaluation, organization, and preservation of physical and digital information items.
  2. H Demonstrate proficiency in identifying, using, and evaluating current and emerging information and communication technologies.
  3. N Evaluate programs and services using measurable criteria.


Required Textbooks:

  • Oliver, G., & Harvey, R. (2016). Digital curation (2nd ed.). Neal-Schuman. Available through Amazon: 0838913857arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

Grading Scale

The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:

97 to 100 A
94 to 96 A minus
91 to 93 B plus
88 to 90 B
85 to 87 B minus
82 to 84 C plus
79 to 81 C
76 to 78 C minus
73 to 75 D plus
70 to 72 D
67 to 69 D minus
Below 67 F


In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:

  • C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
  • B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work or undergraduate (for BS-ISDA);
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA, Informatics, BS-ISDA) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation. You must repeat the class if you wish to stay in the program. If - on the second attempt - you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
  • A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.

Graduate Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA). Undergraduates must maintain a 2.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

Per University Policy S16-9, university-wide policy information relevant to all courses, such as academic integrity, accommodations, etc. will be available on Office of Graduate and Undergraduate Programs' Syllabus Information web page at: Make sure to visit this page, review and be familiar with these university policies and resources.

In order to request an accommodation in a class please contact the Accessible Education Center and register via the MyAEC portal.

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