DSpaceDirect Overview & General Planning Recommendations
The checklist below identifies the recommended tasks that you may wish to address before you upload your content into your DSpaceDirect repository. It is intended to explain basic DSpaceDirect terminology and functionality in order to assist you in the planning of your repository implementation. This information essentially explains DSpaceDirect's capabilities and how it could be useful. A step-by-step "how to" guide to walk you through each task will be available soon.
Before you upload your content into your DSpaceDirect repository, we highly recommend you spend some time thinking about some key questions to further flesh out the plans for your repository (if you haven't done so yet). There are some excellent repository planning resources that can help you with this process, and while they were written a while ago, much of the content is still very useful.
You may also find it helpful to see how others are using the DSpace open source software. You can find a listing of the the known public DSpace repositories on our DSpace user registry. This list can be browsed based on various criteria – like country or type of institution (academic, research center, museum, etc.). Once you click on the institution's name you can see more detail about the repository, including a link that you can follow to visit the repository.
During your local planning process, you should work towards coming to a general plan/agreement at your institution on the following:
Before you upload your content you will need to establish an organizational structure for your DSpaceDirect repository. To do this you may wish to use your institution's basic organizational structure (college, department, research center, laboratory, etc.) and create what DSpaceDirect calls "Communities" and "Collections". Communities and Collections are the names of the hierarchical structure that can be used to easily navigate. Some example structures:
Communities can be further divided into Sub-Communites and within each Community or Sub-Community you can create various Collections, which are groupings of related content. Content "Items", which includes metadata and a file or group of files, can only be deposited under a Collection.
Communities and Collections are not the only way to browse or locate content in your DSpaceDirect repository (your users will also be able to search or browse by author, titles, subjects, and issue date). But, Communities and Collections are an important aspect of structuring your content, and optionally assigning different access and reviewer roles (for different Collections). More information on Access and Reviewer Roles can be found below.
The hierarchical structure can be changed and content can be moved, but it is a good idea to think about how best to organize your DSpaceDirect repository and reflecting on all the possible content you may want to add before you begin creating Communities and Collections.
Before you begin to upload content you will need to understand what is included in a DSpaceDirect "Item".
In DSpaceDirect an Item is a combination of metadata and corresponding file/s (it is possible to have metadata only Items, however). All Items include:
Overview of the submission process:
Understanding the submission process provides an opportunity for you to build consensus at your institution about how to standardize content submissions to your repository. For example, there may be some metadata fields that you decide not to use because they are not meaningful and/or because skipping them will expedite the submission process. You may also want to consider developing some policies around Item submissions – for example – a policy around the appropriate use of the embargo feature and perhaps set limits on the duration of embargoes.
In order to give people submission privileges or edit rights you will need to set up User Accounts and User Groups.
Assuming that your DSpaceDirect repository is open, anyone can view, browse and download content without needing a User Account (these are referred to as anonymous users). However, in order to submit or edit Items users must have a User Account established. Through the DSpaceDirect account set up process you already identified what type of authentication scheme you wanted to use (DSpaceDirect offers one or more of the following options: user self-registration (default), LDAP, Shibboleth, IP-Address-Based). If you chose the default user self-registration, anyone can register with your DSpaceDirect instance using their email address. An email is automatically sent to verify the email address and to complete the registration process. Once they have completed the registration process, by default, new users only have the same rights an anonymous user (they are only able to browse, view and download public content). To modify User Account authorization rights you can use the administrator's Access Control options.
By establishing User Groups you can manage authorization/access rights for individuals who need the same privileges by placing them into logical Groups. This makes it easier to modify privileges and establish reviewer workflow submission roles. For example you may want to create a User Group for the faculty from different departments – like a Group called ‘Computer Science Staff’ and add all relevant users to that Group. Those users will then inherit the privileges associated with that Group. Users can be a member of multiple User Groups. For example an individual may work for two different departments. By putting him/her in both groups they will inherit both sets of privileges.
DSpaceDirect provides a flexible way to manage and group users to suit your institutional structure and workflow. If you haven't done so already, think about the logical groupings of individuals and decide what Groups you may want to establish to facilitate the submission process as well as the content review process. You can always create new User Groups or modify User Groups and their authorization rights as you learn more and as local needs change.
To support your local repository workflow and ensure quality control over your repository content, DSpaceDirect provides different types of access and reviewer roles. With the exception of Administrator, the access and reviewer roles are all set at the Collection level. The Administrator role can be set at either the Community or Collection level.
Access roles determine what rights individual users or User Groups have for each Collection. When establishing or editing a Collection you can specify any or all of the following access roles to suit your local workflow:
Reviewer roles determine what individual users or User Groups are in charge of reviewing new Items submitted to a Collection. Here are a few examples of how review process can help ensure quality control over your repository content:
When establishing or editing a Collection you can specify any, all or none of the following reviewer roles to suit your local workflow. It is important to note that each of these roles actually constitute a "step" (or stage) in the review process.
The reviews happen in the order indicated above. Each user or User Group assigned to a reviewer role will receive email notification automatically when it's their turn to review. If a role is assigned to more than one user or a User Group only one person needs to review and approve before it moves to the next step. On each Collection you can individually decide which of these review steps to enable. They are always processed in the same order, but you can choose to enable zero, one, two or all three of the steps (steps which are not enabled are skipped over).
DSpaceDirect provides a flexible reviewer process that can be customized to suit your institution's repository workflow. If you haven't done so already, think about the controls you need to establish and who will play a role in reviewing submissions before content Items are made public. You will need to balance the need for accurate, high quality content with duration and complexity of your review process – but you can always modify the review roles as your learn more and as the needs change.
Before you begin to upload content you should understand what metadata is available in DSpaceDirect, decide whether you need to make any immediate modifications and also contemplate establishing any standard practices for metadata (e.g. author names always should include full names rather than nicknames – i.e., "David" and not Dave). Please note if you wish to add or remove metadata fields in DSpaceDirect, you will need to notify DuraSpace to ensure those metadata fields are also updated in the Item submission forms and elsewhere. Depending on the complexity of the changes this may require purchasing extra support hours.
Metadata is information that describes a particular piece of content. In DSpaceDirect metadata is used to describe different types of content or structures within the repository, including Communities, Collections, and Items. In addition there are two different types of metadata:
Descriptive metadata - Information that describes the attributes of an object, such the title, author, or publication date.
Administrative metadata - Information that helps with the management of an object or describes the object's provenance. Examples include the location of the object or the name of the user who created the object and its descriptive metadata.
The default metadata schema in DSpaceDirect is Dublin Core. Dublin Core is made up of elements and qualifiers. There are 15 base elements, all of which can be refined through the use of qualifiers:
If the content you plan to put in your repository requires a different metadata schema, you can add new schemas. You may also edit existing schema elements, like modifying the name or descriptor of an element, deleting an element or adding new elements. Again, please note that if you wish to add or edit metadata schemas or fields in DSpaceDirect, you will need to notify DuraSpace to ensure your changes are fully enabled in the Item submission forms or search results or similar. Depending on the complexity of the change, this may require purchasing extra support hours.
Understanding metadata provides an opportunity for you to build consensus at your institution about how to standardize metadata to suit your content and your users. The sooner you determine how you will use metadata and communicate that to all your submitters, the less metadata editing will be required of your reviewers and/or the less clean up you will have later.