A Comparison of Descriptive Tagging Practices by Library, Archive, and Museum Professionals using an Inter-Indexing Consistency Approach

Christine Angel

Abstract


This study is a comparison of the descriptive tagging practices among library, archive, and museum professionals using an inter-indexing consistency approach. The first purpose of this study was to determine the extent of the similarities and differences among professional groups when assigning descriptive tags to different object types typically found within the library, archive and museum environments. The second purpose of this study was to compare the descriptive practices of these three professional groups to different object types typically found within the library, archive and museum environments. Findings from this study indicate while there were few differences in depth of indexing per object type among professional groups, various levels of description were applied to the different object types. Levels of description were derived from: (1) the three dimensional or physical media pictured; (2) the digital surrogate; (3) the objects aboutness;(4) the technique and materials used to make the physical object, and; (5) written text. Data analysis also indicates there was a significant difference between means in the total number of exact matched primary tags applied perobject type. As such, information retrieval within the online environment could be improved if there was better quality control in the application of thedifferent levels of description among information professionals.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7152/nasko.v4i1.14642