Making a mark in information management
FAO releases training package on creating digital libraries
8 June 2005, Rome - As part of an ongoing e-learning initiative known as the Information Management Resource Kit (IMARK), FAO has released the second in a series of training modules aimed at improving the management and sharing of agricultural information.
The "Digitization and Digital Libraries" module was developed in collaboration with UNESCO to teach librarians and non-specialists how to digitize documents and put them online to create virtual libraries.
The module, available free of charge from FAO and UNESCO on CD-ROM, is compatible with a wide range of computers, as well as older operating systems, making it particularly well-suited for users in developing countries.
"Designed for use by both specialists and non-specialists in information management in developing countries, this training module should help level the digital playing field and improve the overall effectiveness of agricultural development and food security programmes by enhancing access to information," says Anton Mangstl, Director of FAO's Library and Documentation Systems Division.
The interactive module includes materials for around 15 hours of training, in a curriculum that users can personalize to meet their particular needs at their own pace. The comprehensive course has material suited for beginners as well as for more advanced users.
The module contains a technical glossary and search function, as well as a wide range of resources such as recommended reading, practical guidelines, software and a manual. An online community will be launched in association with the module to allow learners to exchange views, share information, and request help from each other.
The new training package complements an earlier IMARK module, "Management of Electronic Documents", which introduces basic concepts in electronic document management and describes specific workflows and topics.
Both modules were rated a "Perfect 5" by the Asian Development Bank's CD-ROM review programme designed to promote the use of development-oriented CD-ROMs in the Asia-Pacific region.
"In every possible way, the Information Management Resource Kit (IMARK): Digitization and Digital Libraries module is another best-in-class example of computer-based learning," said the ADB's reviewer. "If users are serious about learning and applying the content delivered in this module, their success is assured." (Read the full review.)
To learn more about the IMARK initiative, click here.
Information Officer, FAO
(+39) 06 570 56146
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