The Institutional Repository at the University of Florida (IR@UF)

Learn about the IR@UF, a free and open online archive for the University of Florida.

Defining Metadata

Metadata, or 'data about data,' is the basis for records of files uploaded into the IR@UF. Metadata aids in discovery and identification of items. Providing the most accurate and complete metadata that you can about your file makes it easier is for researchers to find your work and understand the context in which it was created.

For guidelines on the different metadata fields available when you load an item into the IR@UF, select the tabs below.

MetaData Guidelines

Main Title

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)


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


  • Photograph of monarch butterfly, taken in Gainesville, Florida, 2015 July 6
  • Bookmark depicting Mount Fuji at sunset
  • Lithograph showing exterior view of the market hall in Budapest, 1931

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


Defaults to your name.  If you are submitting work on behalf of someone else, or need to add additional creators, use the format:

  • For persons: Last, First
  • For organizations: Direct order. Separate subdivisions with a period 


  • Alligator, Alberta
  • University of Florida. George A. Smathers Libraries

Material Type

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

  • Book Chapter
  • Conference Papers
  • Conference Proceedings
  • Course Material
  • Dataset
  • Journal Article
  • Other *
  • Technical Reports

* may include: Conference Poster, Powerpoint, Video, Audio, Map, etc.

Larger Body of Work

If relevant, include title of the parent work (e.g., a journal or symposium title).


  • Delos: A Journal of Translation and World Literature

  • 17th Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium


Include name of publisher and/or manufacturer.  


Publisher's URL

If relevant, include link to the resource on publisher's (or another) website.


Place of Publication

Include place of publication or manufacture.  


  • Gainesville, FL
  • New York City
  • London


Publication Date

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

Use the format: YYYY Month DD - YYYY Month DD


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


Abstracts are an opportunity to give the user an overview of the object, its place in history, and its use in research contexts. This is one of the fields searched when full-text search is not available.


Relevant details to note might include funding sources or details about a conference.


Choosing subject terms from a controlled vocabulary improves search and browsing functionality.  The IR@UF prefers the FAST vocabulary, which you can use at

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