Hannah Tarver (University of North Texas) and Steven Gentry (University of Michigan), who are members of the Digital Library Assessment Interest Group’s Metadata Assessment Working Group (DLF AIG MWG), have written an overview of metadata assessment in digital libraries, and its importance and benefits for the DLF blog. In “What is Metadata Assessment?,” they posit that,
“Metadata assessment is necessary because errors and/or inconsistencies inevitably creep into records. Collections are generally built over time, which means that many different people are involved in the lifecycle of metadata; standards or guidelines may change; and information may be moved or combined. There are a number of different quality aspects that organizations may want to evaluate within metadata values.”
The authors address five categories for metadata assessment: accuracy, completeness, conformance to expectations, consistency, and timeliness. They also address the benefits such assessments provide to users and organizations that maintain digital collections, while noting the complications of social and technical infrastructure required to approach these issues at scale with equity and quality. Tarver and Gentry’s post offers a critical resource for metadata assessment for digital humanities projects and their metadata as well.