The Application of User Centric Metadata in Student Reflections: The Service Learning Classroom for Non-Science Majors


  • Maria Cristina Santana University of Central Florida


A college class of non-science majors completed a metadata project in 15 weeks for a Women’s History collection at a southern 4-year university. The class First and Second Wave of Feminism explored for the first time a scientific method of cataloguing while learning to promote, restore and preserve the history of women in the United States. This class completed a service learning project with the university’s Special Collection and Archives enabling them to learn library science metadata skills. The Judith and Warren Kaplan Women’s History collection includes ephemera, documents and books all dealing on women’s history and therefore of interest to the students in the above-mentioned class. The user centric metadata included open-ended questions for students to answer such as Importance of women’s history and Why the item was chosen to catalogue. After careful reading of student’s reflections on the project’s impact on them, several conclusions can be reached. Students preferred to express their choice and description as much as the reflection necessary to complete the Service Learning project. Students also prefer to relate each item from something learn in the classroom as a way of matching both book and activity-centered experiences.

Author Biography

Maria Cristina Santana, University of Central Florida

Associate Professor and Director Women's and Gender Studies program