Reply To: Newspaper indexing search terms

Joy Banks

In a former position, I helped to establish the metadata input standards for a digitization project of the student newspaper. Before starting the project, we really sat and thought about how this collection would be used by students, faculty, and alumni, determined our standards, and then tweaked things along the way. If you would like to see the digital collection, here is a link:

Of note, we included a full “contents” note of all of the articles which included the author, when available. This includes much repetition, especially when there were series of articles, but we found it worth the time since it helped to track certain student publication trends. We included a listing of all of the staff, editors, and faculty advisers involved in any given issue and tried to establish name headings as we went along. We also tried to include general subject headings for each edition, including any big picture issues (WWII, for example) and more local campus issues (intramural teams and student organizations). Because of the care taken to describe the newspapers well (instead of simply relying on full text searching which can be iffy for older newsprint) and the consideration up front on how the collection may be used, this developed into one of the most well used digital collections at the college with buy-in from the current newspaper staff, journalism and other faculty, and alum excited to see their names in print again.

Good luck!

Joy Banks
Bok Tower Gardens