Part I.


Additional considerations for selecting material for a digitization project include:

Purpose of the project

  • Is the primary purpose of digitization the facilitation of discovery, access and use of the objects?
  • Will digitization serve the goal of offering illustrative images and/or samples of content to help contextualize an argument or add dimension to narrative or educational materials?

Target audience(s)

  • Who are the primary users of the digitized material? Are there secondary users? Will the broader community have access to the digitized material?
  • How might the digitized material be used by different stakeholders and audiences?
  • How much content, context, and additional details are required for audiences to understand and make the best use of the digitized materials?

Intellectual value[1]

  • Will digitization add intellectual value to the original source material?
  • Who are the potential users of the digitized material?
  • Will digitization provide new opportunities for access and scholarship?
  • Will digitization address gaps in current scholarship?


  • How unique are the items you wish to digitize?
  • Are there other copies of the material digitized and available online? If so, consider integrating this material into your project by linking and referencing this material.
    • View a listing of major digitization collections to cross-check in Appendix A of this guide.

Visual appeal

  • Is the content visually appealing?
  • Which aspects or parts of the material are important to highlight?
  • Are there particular items that embody the spirit of the project that you would want to highlight?
  • Will digitization of the material reduce its visual appeal?
    • Will relevant text be legible?
    • Will images translate well?

  1. Adapted from: Dan Hazen, Jeffrey Horrell, Jan Merrill-Oldham's Selecting Research Collections for Digitization-Full Report — Council on Library and Information Resources. August 1998. Retrieved November 16, 2017, from


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