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DCMI Education Community

DCMI Logo Report of the DC-Education Working Group
Breakout Session

12 September 2005 (15:30-19:00), Madrid, Spain
Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Padre Soler Building, Seminar Room 4.1.E05

Session 1 (15:30-17:00)

Stuart Sutton began the session with a general introduction to the history of the WG, especially the successful proposals for DC elements/refinements and the ongoing work with IEEE-LOM. There was an early realization that a DC-Ed application profile would ideally include some properties from IEEE-LOM, and the Ottawa Communiqué reinforced the commitment of both bodies to pursue that goal.

Stuartreviewed progress towards the 2004-2005 deliverables. The DCMI/IEEE-LOM cooperative work is continuing to progress. The Project Clearinghouse did not move forward, but the DC-Ed Application Profile is moving along.

Mikael Nilsson presented information about the cooperative work between DCMI and IEEE-LOM, which has picked up again subsequent to the approval of the DC Abstract Model. He pointed out that LOM elements are not immediately usable in combination with DCMI elements in APs. The only way to do so has been to use RDF to combine LOM and DC. With the new formalism introduced with the Abstract Model, where relationships between properties, values, encoding schemes are specified, discrepancies between bindings (XML, RDF, XHTML) can be resolved to ensure interoperability.

Mikael made some recommendations for using LOM metadata in DC descriptions. There will be some loss in transformations from one to the other in certain areas, for instance: LOM supports ordering and DC does not, so ordering in a LOM record cannot be carried into a DC record. He noted that the DC Abstract Model has emerged in part because of the Semantic Web's need to more firmly define relationships. That said, most of the problems in using DC and LOM together stem from the fact that DC is essentially flat and LOM is hierarchical, so properties cannot be pulled from the hierarchy and re-used without changing the context, and perhaps the definition. Some work still remains in this area before firm written recommendations can be made.

Session 2 (17:30-19:00)

Stuart reviewed the draft DC-ED application profile with the group. He pointed out that something called an AP has been floating around since the 2000 meeting in Australia. Formalizing the AP and documenting it properly has been delayed because there were too many things we don't know how to do properly. Given the work of the DC-Libraries WG and the CEN efforts to standardize how APs are presented, both as human- and machine-readable documents, it seemed that the time was coming where the work could be brought to completion.

At the WG meeting in Shanghai we decided we would go ahead, despite the still unanswered questions. The first step was the formation of a volunteer Drafting Committee (see the Committee wiki at: (we could still use volunteers. Diane Hillmann is chair, and Stuart Sutton is editor)).

The remainder of the meeting was devoted to discussion about the scope of the application profile (only educationally purposed materials, or a broader range of potentially repurposed materials?), whether energy spent applying constraints and obligations to regular DC elements was well-spent, and, if not, whether a more direct focus on educationally important elements might be a better strategy. The group consensus was that this last seemed reasonable. Additional suggestions included the development of an example set of metadata describing educationally relevant resources, drawn from a number of communities.

To summarize 2005-2006 Deliverables:

  • Continue with DCMI/IEEE LOM cooperative work (LOM DCAM)
    • Joint DCMI/IEEE LTSC Taskforce (there was a proposal for this after the DC-Ed meeting, which was subsequently approved by the AB).
  • DC-Ed AP continuing work including:
    • Emphasis on educational properties
    • Development of example set
    • Designation of controlled vocabularies

Report by Diane Hillmann with assistance from Sarah Currier