CIRCA:Metadata Requirements


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History and Archives Metadata Requirements

The following outline for Metadata was created by the History and Archives group at the University of Alberta and was completed in December of 2010. It was tested and annotated in 2012.


The name our project gives to the document to distinguish it in the archive. The title should, where possible, follow a pattern of <Author/Publisher>, <Title>, <Type>, <Date>. Eg:
CCH, Ontario Humanities Computing 1.4, newsletter, 1987

Creator Title

A name given to a resource by its creator. Most likely the name of the original. Eg:
Ontario Humanities Computing 1.4

Creator of Original

The person responsible for the creation of the resource in its original form.

Digital Record Creator

The person responsible for the creation of the digital form of the resource.

Record Creator

The person responsible for the creation of the archive record.


The topic of the resource (key words, phrases). Use with a controlled vocabulary.


An account of the resource (an abstract, table of contents. Information about the subject matter.

Physical Description

Physical characteristics technical requirements. Medium condition.


Provide details of the originals including physical location, medium, condition. Narrative field.


General note.

Publication Information

If resource has been published provide account. Use a standard format.

Archived Version History

To keep track of versions of resource in the archive.


Year of origination.

Date of Origination

Date of origination of the resource.

Date of Collection

Date the resource in question entered the collection.

Date of Digitisation

Date of Digitisation


The nature or genre of the resource. Example letter, memo, meeting. Use with a controlled vocabulary.


Extent and medium of unit of description. Archived version. Use with a controlled vocabulary.


A related resource or organization from which the described resource is derived.


Use with a controlled vocabulary. For example the ISO's 'codes for the representations of names of languages' would be an ideal controlled vocabulary.


A related resource in the archive.


The spatial or temporal topic of the resource.


An unambiguous ARK reference to the resource within a given context (a unique identifier).


Information about rights held in and over the resource.


Use for conditions governing access.


Use for conditions governing use.

Preferred Citation

The key to a strong metadata record is being internally consistent

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