The Education world is seeing a real shift in the entire learning paradigm. The new trend is focused on Learning, Learner, Engagement and Discovery with aim to provide the learners with enhanced Digital content and Instructional material in the form of eCourseware, eText, Games, Simulations and other form of Open Educational resources.
The supply chain for the digital content involves interaction and collaboration of different user groups like Content Distributors, Content Providers, Publishers, Districts, Schools before it actually gets accessed by Instructors and learners.
With Educational resources taking a boost in the market, it is critical to have this digital resources content tagged with standardized “Metadata”.
What is Metadata?
In simple words, Metadata is the who, what, when, and where for a content resource. Metadata describe the learning context to which the Learning object is suited for.
It is much beyond the Title, Description, Keywords and can cover the Learning resource type – video or assessment or picture or more, Discipline/Subject, Differentiation – readibility, Date, Time, Topics, Standards, Skills and much more, Remediation paths, Links to learning progression maps, Accessibility support, Usage Information.
Common Usage of Metadata in the Digital Content
Design and delivery of a sustained and immersive learning context in which learners can master the learning skills and objectives and apply those skills to solve cognitively complex real world problems is time consuming. The capacity to provide instructors with an adequate access to range of learning resources appropriate to learning is among the most challenging.
- Using standard metadata Instructors, learners and parents can seek resources matching appropriate learning objectives to meet the learner needs.
- Digital Content Providers use metadata in content for better marketing of their work and allow Learning Institutions, Instructors and Parent opt for what is better for the learners.
- Content Managers curate the learning content and tag them for imparting efficient learning.
- IT Teams at Schools, Libraries use standard metadata to import content and communicate between different technical infrastructures.
What are the kinds of metadata?
The commonly used type of metadata includes:
- Descriptive metadata is typically used for discovery and identification, as information used to search and locate an object such as title, author, subjects, keywords, publisher.
- Structural metadata gives a description of how the components of an object are organized. An example of structural metadata would be content organisation or table of contents in a book.
- Administrative data includes Rights management metadata explain intellectual property rights, while preservation metadata contains information that is needed to preserve and save a resource
Is Metadata creation an easy process – How to create Metadata?
- Elementary metadata in K12 Digital world can be created while an object/digital resource is created either manually or an automation manner. The primitive data may include information about when an object was created, who created it, when it was last updated, file size, and file extension.
- Specialised users can create advanced metadata by using automated workflows or custom tailored tools
Some popular standards in Metadata
|Onix 3.0||Online Information Exchange – international standard for representing and communicating book industry product information in electronic form.|
|IEEE LOM||Learning Objects Metadata – specifies the syntax and semantics of Learning Object Metadata.|
|TEI||Text Encoding Initiative – a standard for the representation of texts in digital form, chiefly in the humanities, social sciences and linguistics.|
|MARC||MARC – Machine Readable Cataloging – standards for the representation and communication of bibliographic and related information in machine-readable form.|
|Dublin Core||Dublin Core – interoperable online metadata standard focused on networked resources.|
Other Ongoing Initiatives in metadata
- Schema.org is a joint initiative of the search engines Google, Bing, Yahoo and Yandex aimed at making it easier to index web pages in such a way that facilitates the building of sophisticated search services. Schema.org metadata can also be used for other eBooks and as stand-alone metadata records.
- Educational technology and curriculum standards organizations and their initiatives (IMS, SLC, SIF, RTTT, Learning Registry, OAI, W3C, PARCC, SBAC, ASCD)