Limestone Selected To Participate In Digital Resources Project

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Tuesday, July 7, 2015 - 8:30am

The Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) recently announced the selection of 42 member colleges and universities that will comprise the Consortium on Digital Resources for Teaching and Research.

Limestone College was one of only four schools from South Carolina selected to take part in the $2.2 million project. The other Palmetto State colleges picked were Coker, Presbyterian, and Wofford.

Through the use of a cloud-based uniform digital platform known as Shared Shelf, which is already used by institutions such as Harvard and Cornell, Consortium members will be able to increase their capacities to store, preserve, and catalogue collections of digital images, documents, audio and video files, and other types of materials while streamlining administrative capabilities.

Consortium members will be able to improve teaching and learning and enhance faculty and student/faculty research on their own campuses by making lesser known or hidden collections searchable and accessible.

Limestone will focus on digitizing and archiving student research and creative works including conference papers, poster sessions, studio art works, creative writing projects, and oral histories.

“Even before the opportunity to join the Consortium was announced, the Limestone College Library was exploring ways in which to recognize students’ research and creative works by publishing their works online in a repository type platform,” said Lizah Ismail, Director of the A.J. Eastwood Library who worked with her staff to apply for inclusion into the digital resources project. “One of our many goals was to provide our students with a platform through which their works are published, thus encouraging them to take ownership of their work as well as show greater motivation and conviction for their assignments and projects. We also wanted to increase the visibility of the College for potential students as well as potential employers for Limestone graduates. When the announcement about the consortium came along, it was the perfect opportunity to pursue our goals which will enhance our teaching, learning and research functions.”

The funding for the project was provided by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Each Consortium member will decide how broadly its collections will be shared. CIC officials said they hope that Consortium participants will share them with one another and consider making them available to a wider audience. This project could eventually lead to much wider use of important research and teaching collections and to significant cost savings for institutions throughout the Consortium and beyond.

The members of the Consortium will convene annually for three years to share ideas, collections, research projects, and teaching strategies, beginning in September 2015. CIC and Shared Shelf will cover the full platform subscription fee for two years and half the subscription fee for two additional years. CIC will subsidize the team’s cost of participation in the Consortium meetings.