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Aleph@UF: UFDC Metadata

Cataloging procedures and policies

UFDC Metadata

Updated May 2019 by Dave Van Kleeck

UFDC Metadata

The SobekCM Metadata Help page has general information and provides guidelines for entering metadata in UFDC. It covers the basics of entering descriptive metadata. Each project will have variations and additional metadata regarding the collection, intellectual property, etc. See collection-specific guidelines immediately below. General guidelines on metadata creation follow the specific project information.

Guidelines for Specific Projects


Known Titles

If the object has a title, use it.

  • transcribed from the object or folder
  • available from reference sources
  • common names (e.g., Mona Lisa)
  • first line of text (e.g., for poetry)


Devised Titles

If the object does not have a title, devise one, including as known:

  • material type
  • creator
  • subject(s) and/or what is depicted
  • place and date of provenance


  • Diary of John Ward
  • Scrapbook of Libbi Maltbie about Alaska vacation, 1909
  • John Cournos letter to Alfred Kreymborg, 1921 June 6
  • Photograph of President Abraham Lincoln
  • Bookmark depicting Mount Fuji at sunset
  • Lithograph showing exterior view of the market hall in Budapest, 1931
  • Painting of Madonna and Child, after 1867

For music, additionally note (as appropriate and known):

  • Medium of performance
  • Numeric designation
  • Key
  • Other distinguishing characteristics

For maps, additionally note (as appropriate and known):

  • Geographic area covered



Series Titles

For archival materials, include the parent series or subseries title in the "Other Title" field, with type "Series Title."

Physical Description

Physical Description

Record physical description according to the format:

[count] [type] : [illustration details] ; [what is measured] [dimensions]

Dimensions should be measured in cm or mm, rounded up to the nearest whole number.


  • 12 pages : color illustrations ; 28 cm
  • 1 pamphlet ; 16 x 20 cm
  • 4 maps ; 70 x 98 cm
  • 1 print : engraving ; platemark 12 x 10 cm
  • 3 prints : drypoint and aquatint ; sheet 16 cm

Temporal Coverage

Temporal Coverage

You may document a time period associated with the creation and use of the object.  Examples include:

  • a time period during which the object was originally used (e.g., its provenance)
  • a time period during which the object was created (e.g., dates associated with business records)
  • a time period during which data was collected

You may specify start and end years (format: YYYY) in separate fields.

You may also specify a period name.  

Select period names from: 

Faceted Application of Subject Terminology (FAST)

Spatial Coverage

Spatial Coverage

You may document geographic areas associated with the creation and use of an object.

You may specify:

  • Continent
  • Country
  • Province
  • Region
  • State
  • Territory
  • County
  • City
  • City section
  • Island
  • Area

Select geographic names from:

Faceted Application of Subject Terminology (FAST) (preferred)

Thesaurus for Geographic Names (TGN)



Always note the authority (fast, tgn, etc.)



Enter latitude and longitude in separate fields.

Use the format: 51° 28' 38" N


Style / Period

You may document a style to indicate visual appearance, configuration of artistic elements, method of creation, geographic reference, and time frame of creation.  This is particularly helpful for art and artifacts.

Select style and period terms from: 

Faceted Application of Subject Terminology (FAST) (preferred)

Art and Architecture Thesaurus (AAT)

Materials & Techniques

Materials & Techniques

You may document materials and techniques used to create the object (use separate fields for materials, techniques). 

Select materials and techniques terms from: 

Faceted Application of Subject Terminology (FAST) (preferred)

Art and Architecture Thesaurus (AAT)

If FAST or AAT are not sufficient for your project, consult with the Metadata Librarian to select an alternate thesaurus.


Creator Names

Select creator names from:

The Virtual International Authority File (VIAF)


If you need to construct a local name (LOCAL), use the format:

  • Last, First, YYYY-YYYY (for persons)
  • Direct order (for organizations)



Choose a role for each creator (in order of preference) from:



Select subject terms from:

Faceted Application of Subject Terminology (FAST)

If FAST is not sufficient for your project, consult with the Metadata Librarian to select an alternate thesaurus.



Always note the scheme (fast, aat, lcsh, local, etc.) 

Genre / Resource Type / Format


Select genre terms from: 

Faceted Application of Subject Terminology (FAST)

If FAST is not sufficient for your project, consult with the Metadata Librarian to select an alternate thesaurus.



Always note the authority (fast, lcgft, rbgenr, etc.)


Resource Type

Resource type is selected from a drop-down menu.  Choose one:

  • Aerial
  • Archival
  • Artifact
  • Audio
  • Book
  • Dataset
  • Map
  • Newspaper
  • Photograph
  • Serial
  • Video

Abstract & Notes


Abstracts may have the following types.  Please select one:

  • Abstract
  • Content Advice
  • Review
  • Scope and Content
  • Subject
  • Summary

Abstracts are an opportunity to give the user an overview of the object, its place in history, and its use in research contexts.


Notes can be of a variety of types, and fulfill multiple purposes.  Please consult the Metadata Librarian if you would like help constructing notes.

Publication & Manufacture

Publisher & Manufacturer

Include place(s) and name of publisher and/or manufacturer.  This information is transcribed from the resource and/or supplied by the cataloger.


Publication Date

The publication date field may be used to record the publication date (transcribed as given on the object), the broadcast date, the date of creation (e.g., for art and artifacts), or the date of record-keeping (e.g., for archival records).  

If constructing a date, use the format:

[designation] [YYYY] [month] [DD] (as known)


  • 1979-1993
  • 1785-1960, bulk 1916-1958
  • probably 1867
  • 1975 March-August
  • 1906 March 17
  • circa 1925
  • after 1867 January 5


Copyright Date

Record the year of copyright.

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