Student Projects

The School of Information Sciences assists students in hands-on learning of their in-class teachings. This is coordinated via the Career Advising Office. If you wish to work on some of these projects for a practicum you will need to work with the career advisor and your practicum supervisor.

Digital Content Management Projects

SIS is partnering with Archive Team and Pop-up Archives for some innovative (unpaid) student projects. The summaries are listed below and may qualify for an archival or digital content management practicum project.

Archive Team is a ground breaking organization that preserves web sites that are ending. They have been instrumental in saving many social media sites that have closed quickly as well as being proactive to save web content in troubled areas. They have offered our students the opportunity to preserve Detroit-oriented websites via their web preservation process. This is a great opportunity to become familiar with the tools for capturing web sites, as well as the creation of descriptive content for long-term preservation.

Pop-Up Archive is a system to create archives for smaller institutions. This was created while they were in library school. They focus primarily on audio and are interested in our students working on the Kitchen Sisters Archive (heard on NPR) and Illinois Public Media (see below).

Kitchen Sisters legacy metadata integration

The Kitchen Sisters have been producing radio stories for NPR and public broadcast for over 30 years. They chronicle the B-side of history, seldom heard voices, immigrant's stories, little known histories and the traditions and rituals people.

For this project, the team will assist on a NEH Digital Humanities Startup Grant to design and implement a process for integrating pre-existing Kitchen Sisters text transcripts and metadata spreadsheets with audio files in Pop Up Archive. The team will be responsible for end-to-end project life cycle with oversight from Pop Up Archive and developers at the Public Radio Exchange.

Desired skill sets: metadata modeling, scripting, cataloging, project management, enthusiasm for public media

Technology involved: Ruby on Rails app, Postgres database, scripting in language of your choice

Illinois Public Media PBCore metadata modeling

Illinois Public Media is a nonprofit public media service of the College of Media at the University of Illinois, educating, entertaining, inspiring and empowering by airing the best of public television and radio programs. For this project, the team will prepare one or more detailed mappings from PBCore, the broadcast public media metadata standard, to the Pop Up Archive metadata schema, and using Illinois Public Media content as a use case. The PBCore metadata schema is robust and flexible, so mappings can be approached in multiple ways.

Desired skill sets: metadata modeling, cataloging, enthusiasm for public media

Technology involved: PBCore XML, potentially XSLT, XPath

If you are interested in working on these projects, please contact Kim Schroeder. Students can further develop current skills and publish or present from these projects.

This work can be done on-site or remotely.

Archival Projects

Potential projects for a practicum or unpaid internship at the Reuther Library

  1. Process the AFL-CIO Publications Collection (about 60 linear feet left). These are frequently used records and the Reuther wants to provide even better access.
  2. Scan the AFSCME Local 1733 Memphis TN Records (1.75 linear feet), assign basic metadata, convert finding aid to EAD, and recommend uses of digitized material for display. This vital collection relates to the 1968 Memphis Sanitation Workers Strike and Martin Luther King's Assassination.
  3. Edit description of collections by separating library or AV materials and describing them through inventories. Project would involve surveying existing finding aids and editing descriptive tools (EAD, DACS, online abstracts, etc.)
  4. Analyze blog and their collections and create list of potential blog topics that are missing. May include writing some blog posts and overall idea generation for blog.
  5. Devise and assessment instrument to evaluate the effectiveness of the Reuther Library blog.
  6. EAD encoding of older finding aids.
  7. Conversion of Folklore Archives into digital format. These tapes will also need to be described into a database.
  8. Comparative study of benchmarks for reporting of reference statistics between the Reuther and other like institutions. Recommendations for how best to report the statistics.
  9. Creation of SEIU Image Gallery would include scanning, uploading and describing aspects of this union's proud past.
  10. Review, evaluate and update reference tools for the UAW Unbound Newspapers Collection and the UAW Bound Newspapers Collection.
  11. The posters of the United Farm Workers Poster Collection need to be scanned in pieces, reassembled digitally, described and uploaded to an image gallery.
  12. Usability testing of descriptive systems "" how easy/hard is it for users to find the information they seek from the Reuther?
  13. Wikipedian in residence
  14. Appraise, arrange and describe the Society of Women Engineers Detroit Section Records. Create EAD finding aid of the records.

Potential projects for a practicum or unpaid internship at the Wright Museum of African American History


  1. The Blanding Collection (med. large collection)
  2. The Eva Henderson Collection (large trunk in Manuscript Room)
  3. The Alvin Anderson Collection (needs accessioning; 5 cf; photos, transcripts, postcards, etc.)
  4. Dr. Charles Vincent Collection (5 cf)


  1. Dr. William McAdoo Oral History Collection (of his patients(?), not family - audiocassettes need migration and collection is totally unprocessed - 1 box))
  2. J. Edward Bailey Photography Collection (Life Magazine photographer; 1 box)
  3. Don Vest Collection (Interim Director of Wright Museum; museum-related materials. Small collection of 2 cf)
  4. Lottie Graves Collection (1 small box; Ms. Graves requests an oral history to be taken as well)
  5. And about 21 tiny collections, all located in the Manuscript Room, M/16/1 & 2. These are mostly 1-4 files in extent, but a couple are a half-size archives boxful.

Long-term/large collections that need assistance

  • Horace Sheffield Collection
  • Wright Museum Collection
  • Dr. Wright Papers

If interested, submit a resume to Career Advisor Kim Schroeder at or 313-577-9783.