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In the PrePARe project, we were particularly interested in how members of the research community would like to receive additional information and training.  Many interviewees said they were not likely to attend training courses on digital preservation.  However, many digital preservation issues fit in well with areas where training courses do exist, such as Information Management, Reference Management or Project Management.  In discussion with other projects in the same JISC funding strand, it was proposed that rather than producing a single training course we would produce short training modules which can be slotted into other related courses which are run at the University.   We selected four key areas of digital preservation:

  • Storage (‘Store It Safely’)
  • Documentation and metadata (‘Explain It’)
  • Data sharing and re-use (‘Share It’)
  • Planning (‘Start Early’)

For each module, we prepared slides, and detailed explanatory notes that could be used as a script, which provide more examples and context.  While the intention was that each module should last around 5 minutes, they run closer to 10 minutes.  Each module is designed so that it can be used independently of the others.  A further module (‘What is data?’) provides a brief introduction to data to give some additional context.

We piloted the modules during the Managing your Information workshop at the University Library in June 2012.  The workshop consists of two 2-hour sessions.  Attendees came from a range of disciplinary backgrounds, including Arts, Social Sciences and Sciences.  For the pilot, our aims were:

  1. To test the concept of having distinct modules embedded into an existing course, from both delivery and participant perspectives.
  2. To gather feedback on the content of the modules from participants.

Overall, the modules integrated well with the main workshop, and the feedback on the modules was positive.

The modules will be deposited in Jorum and are currently available on Slideshare:

These modules complement a leaflet ‘Sending your Research into the Future’ produced in collaboration with the LSE and University of London, coming soon!

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