Cataloguing Online Resources
Our records are held in a database run by Intute called AIRDIP, for Academy-Intute Resource Database Integration Project. There is a machine-readable OAI interface.
We catalogue a few different categories of resources, but mainly online learning and teaching materials. This means there has to be an explicit educational intention for the resource (with few exceptions). This might be an intent to educate the lay public, or school pupils, rather than students. If so, it is probably worth mentioning in the description.
Resources that are of interest for economics but aren't learning materials should be catalogued by Intute Social Sciences rather than us. It is possible to arrange to import Intute records into our Online Sources section. To recommend a site to Intute, email Paul Ayres (paul.ayres@bris). To have it imported into our site, ask Martin.
Part of the cataloguer's job is to spend on average a day a week maintaining the online materials links. This includes replacing broken links and cataloguing new resources.
Martin should be doing an automated link check every month and depositing it on the ILRT's intranet in HEA Econ/Web site/Link checking/broken_links.htm If he doesn't, poke him. The broken link report should be organised by page. The pages in the /teaching/ directory are the ones that are generated from the learning materials database. These links and the links in the books database are the cataloguer's responsibility. The rest are Martin's.
If a site has disappeared but the content is available on archive.org, then change the URL to the archive.org version and mention in the description that an archived unofficial mirror is linked. (NB. Archive.org pages will register as broken links even if the content is there.)
The descriptions are intended to be searchable, so it is worth putting into the description any subject keywords that are not already in the title, such as "this site deals with topics such as development, transitional economies and regulation of trade".
ToBeCatalogued : Links can be deposited here for consideration.
A lot of our resources are found by Googling for relevant terms. It may help to restrict the search to .ac.uk domains or to filetype:pdf since so much text and assessment material is in PDF. It is also worth checking these resource lists as well:
- EconPHD.net: lecture notes online
- Merlot: Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching
- Teaching & Learning on the Web
- World Lecture Hall: Economics
- WebEc - Education and Teaching
- Bized - Economics Materials
- Journal of Economic Education Online section
Some universities or departments have gateways to their learning materials so it's also a good idea to bookmark them if you find them. Two examples are the MIT's Open Courseware Project and the UCal Berkeley Economics department course list.
Each new catalogued site must be given a type. This determines where it will appear on the site. Types are:
- text - Online Text and Notes: This might be fully-formed, like a sample chapter from a book, or note-form, like lecture handouts.
- exam - Static Exams and Tests: This is any assessment material that is not in an interactive form; mostly past papers.
- online_quiz - Interactive Quizzes: Any sort of assessment which you can take online.
- interactive - Interactive Tutorials: Anything which uses electronic interaction (this might be a downloadable Excel file or workbook as well as a web site) and has a specific explicit learning goal
- simulation - Simulations and Models: A virtual stock market or a detailed economic model would go here, since unlike an interactive tutorial, these are more open-ended in how you use them educationally.
- glossary: Anything whose main purpose is to explain economics terms would count.
- case_study: This is usually for a bank of case studies with some economics relevance.
- video - Audio and Video: Confusingly, this includes audio (streaming or downloadable) as well as video. We should strictly have different resource types for video/audio lectures and other source material such as a documentary, but there are so few video/audio resources that we don't yet make this distinction.
- worksheet - Worksheets and Projects Anything that guides students through an activity.
- tutor_guide - Aimed at teachers rather than learners. Some material textbook companion site could go here.
- slides - Lecture Slides Presentation slides, not necessarily in PowerPoint format.
- The "teach&learn" resource types are for resources about education, which at the moment are Martin's responsibility. To get an education journal or newsletter put on the site, email Martin directly (individual sites or papers have to be related to a theme).
- Curriculum/syllabus - usually these will be part of a course site
- Software - a site with details about non-Web software. We only list software with a teaching focus: not all the software that is used for research in economics
Note: Online data available on open access is a page updated manually (not database-driven) by John.
A course web site will normally contain more than one resource type. Try to have separate links for the lecture handouts, the slides and past papers, but if they are all on the same page, then put a comma-separated list of resource types, e.g. "slides,text,exam".