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University Libraries - Digital Collections

Mission Statement

The University Libraries'  Digital Collection Center creates digital collections and makes them available

  • to enhance scholarship and research;
  • to increase access to its holdings;
  • to support the teaching and learning activities of the University of South Carolina faculty and students; and
  • to promote lifelong learning by the citizens of South Carolina and the public at large.

Through the use of appropriate technological standards, the University Libraries endeavor to preserve, encourage use of, and facilitate access to its digital collections.

Faculty and Staff


Boyd, Kate Digital Initiatives Librarian 803-777-2249   Digital Collections
Funk, Sarah Digital Collections Assistant 803-777-0735   Digital Collections
Johnson , Mary Clare   Digital Collections
Knox, Ashley Digital Projects Librarian 803-777-2807   Digital Collections
Moore, Sarah Digital Collections Assistant 803-777-0735   Digital Collections
Quirk, John SC Digital Library Assistant 803-777-0735   Digital Collections

Lance Dupre – Database (CONTENTdm)/network Administrator

Randy Heard, Tony Branch – Desktop support

Advisory Committee

Mike Berry, Books Division, South Caroliniana Library
Beth Bilderback, Visual Materials Division, South Caroliniana Library
Glenn Bunton, Director of Library Technology Services
Jessica Crouch, Archivist, Irvin Department of Rare Books
Brian Cuthrell, Manuscripts Division, South Caroliniana Library
Chris Hare, Scholar Commons
Heather Heckman, Moving Image Research Collections
Craig Keeney, Books Division, South Caroliniana Library
Andrea L'Hommedieu, Oral History, South Caroliniana Library
Laura Litwer, Archivist, South Carolina Political Collections
Kate Moore, South Carolina Political Collections
Nathan Saunders, Manuscripts Division, South Caroliniana Library
Kathy Snediker, Reference Librarian
Bill Sudduth, Government Information and Maps
Elizabeth Sudduth, Rare Books and Special Collections
Dorothy Walker, South Carolina Political Collections
Elizabeth West, University Archivist, South Caroliniana Library
Greg Wilsbacher, Moving Image Research Collections
Jennifer Wochner, Music Library



Project Guidelines

Sustainability Goals

To practice sustainability and long-term retention of digital assets through an efficient selection processes and standardized digital preservation procedures.


  • Effectively choose collections to be digitized by properly following the Selection CriteriaGuidelines.
  • Follow metadata and scanning best practices.
  • Continuously review digital collections and software to determine retention needs.
  • Work in close collaboration with Computer Services' backup and preservation plans for all of the university's electronic documents. We will take advantage of the fact that they will have documented their preservation and archival practices, which will be approved by the State Archives.
  • In the future, adhere to established standards and open source practices, such as the Trusted Digital Repository Attributes and Responsibilities document and the (Open Archival Information System) OAIS Information Model supported by OCLC and Research Libraries Group.

Preservation Goals

USC Libraries Digital Preservation Policy

The Digital Activities Department will create and maintain archival masters of all digital formats. For master images, the uncompressed, open source TIFF format will be used. They will be scanned at the highest quality possible, but no less than 300 ppi. Preservation metadata will be added to the TIFF header at the time of the scan.

  • All TIFFs and JPEGS will be copied onto DVDs, which will be kept in the office. TIFFs will also be sent over the network to the Tier 3 Hitachi SAN server housed at Computer Services (CS), where it will be maintained and periodically backedup to tape. The CONTENTdm database, including the metadata records and the access images (jpegs and jpeg2000s), is also backedup onto the SAN server. Every three years, the Digital Activities Team will review the digital collections to see if any should be discarded, migrated, or refreshed.
  • In the future, the library would like to work with Computer Services to create a "trusted digital repository" and an open archival information system (OAIS) reference model, so that the digital materials of the library will never be lost. The library will also investigate the possibility of creating urns (uniform resource names) or purls (persistent uniform resource locators), which will insure that if any web sites change, web access to the digital objects will not be lost.


Hardware and Software

Scanning Inventory



  • 5 Epson Expression 10000XL PHOTO flatbed scanners with transparency adapters
  • 2 Avision A3 Book Edge FB6080E scanner
  • 1 Zeutschel Omniscan 14000 AO Overhead scanner
  • 1 Mekel Mach 12 Microfilm Scanner


  • 5 Dell Workstations with Pentium 4, 2gb RAM, and 500gb hard drive


  • CONTENTdm database 6.8 with OCR AABBY Fine Reader


  • Silverfast SE Scanning Software
  • Perfect Book 3D scan technology
  • Adobe Dreamweaver
  • Adobe Photoshop CS
  • OmniPage Pro 14 OCR software

Strategic Plan 2012 - 2015

The Digital Collections Department is dedicated to the production, maintenance, delivery, and preservation of digital resources for scholars and students at the University of South Carolina, the citizens of South Carolina and the public at large. Through the use of appropriate technological standards, the University Libraries endeavor to increase access to its holdings in order to improve the teaching and research of the USC faculty, improve the learning and research of the USC Students, to promote lifelong learning by the citizens of South Carolina and the public at large, and to increase knowledge about the development and importance of digital collections.

Stategic Goals
  1. Collaborate with librarians and faculty on digital library-related research projects.
    1. Explore funding opportunities at USC and with other institutions
    2. Explore collaborative research opportunities with faculty
  2. Improve our infrastructure for digital collections
    1. Evaluate a storage solution that is sufficiently capacious and robust to meet access needs over the next 5 years
    2. Begin analysis of alternatives for backup
  3. Enhance preservation of digital collections and metadata
    1. Develop plans to insure the preservation of created digital content and metadata
    2. Lead efforts to configure a Trusted Digital Repository and follow the OAIS model for a digital archive.
  4. Improve communication about the Digital Collection services and collections
    1. Maintain and update the DCD website
    2. Improve written documentation or best practices to guide the activities of people outside the Digital Collections Department who are planning digital projects
  5. Collaborate and support digital projects campus-wide
    1. Develop standards and procedures to work with USC faculty on digital projects
    2. Explore other services we might provide – metadata creation, workshops, and training
  6. Support statewide planning for the digital library development and the creation of the South Carolina Digital Library (SCDL)
    Users throughout SCDL will have access to SC’s unique cultural and historical heritage through a variety of digital formats and free distribution over the Internet. The SCDL seeks to support and enhance education and scholarship and increase the understanding of SC’s past and its role in preparing for SC’s future.
    1. Offer digitization services for external customers and organizations
    2. Host digital content and metadata for external customers
    3. Explore other services we might provide to these organizations – metadata creation, workshops, and training
  7. Foster and promote digital library education and training
  8. Develop and provide tools for the creation and use of digital content and metadata
  9. Explore issues related to offering digital services on all campuses of the University


The Digital Collection Department works closely with the Digital Activities Team, which consists of members from Rare Books and Special Collections, The South Caroliniana Library, The Newsfilm Library, The Music Library, and The Thomas Cooper Map Library, as well as members from the Systems Department, Cataloging, Conservation, Reference, and a School of Library and Information Science Professor.

The Digital Collections Department is also an active member of the South Carolina Digital Library and works with institutions outside the University to promote digitization of cultural heritage materials and support smaller institutions in their endeavors to create digital collections.


The Digital Collections serve several audiences in addition to the faculty, students, and staff of the University of South Carolina.  It serves and participates in the digital library community state-wide and worldwide through project partnership.  It serves users worldwide who access our resources and benefit from our work.  The outcomes of our work are measured by their success in meeting the needs of these audiences.