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These projects will see academic institutions undertake rapid analysis of a digitised resource/collection, and implement solutions to embed the resource within teaching, learning and research.

Impact and Embedding of Digitised Resources

These projects will see institutions undertake rapid analysis of a digitised resource/collection, and implement solutions to embed the resource within teaching, learning and research.


In response to the difficulties earlier digitisation projects encountered around user focus, the JISC Digitisation Strategy highlights the importance of user engagement. To continue to run properly user focused digital resources, the managers of such online collections need to have a good understanding of their audiences, be aware of impact of their resources and understand how to respond to user needs.

A number of previous studies have grappled with the need to assess the usage and impact of digital resources, including, for example: The Strategic Content Alliance’s A Guide to Researching Audiences

Building on the above work, JISC funded The Usage and Impact Study of Digitisation Phase 1 projects.  This study measured the impact of five JISC funded digitisation projects and assembled a Toolkit for the Impact of Digital Scholarly Resources

A key driver for this funding is to address the recommendation of the Usage and Impact report, that funders should provide support for institutions to measure the impact of their digital scholarly resources.

Aims of the Programme:

 By means of the Impact and Embedding of Digitised Resources funding, the JISC seeks to:

  • Address the lack of systematic analysis of the impact of digitised resources and collections in UK Higher Education using the JISC funded Impact Toolkit as a framework for this analysis.
  • Enable institutions to develop and instigate practical approaches to embedding online academic resources within the teaching, learning and research of the institution and Higher Education more generally.
  • Assist content providers in collecting data to demonstrate the impact of digitised scholarly resources, and help strengthen the case for sustainability to the host institution.
  • Contribute toward the health of academic disciplines and research more widely.


  • It is expected that projects will undertake an initial rapid analysis of the use and impact of the identified digital resource/collection.  This analysis should focus on the level of take-up and the way the resource has been used. 
  • In response to the findings of this analysis, and the data it provides, that projects will formulate and put into practice a range of solutions and approaches to address the outcomes of the impact study.

The Projects:

Below is a brief outline of each project. These will be updated shortly with webpages for each of the projects.

British History Online as a Case Study

Institute for Historical Research, University of London

This proposed project will use the Toolkit for the Impact of Digitised Scholarly Resources to enhance and broaden the British history Online (BHO) information on usage and impact of digital resources, thereby informing future development of BHO and contributing to its long-term sustainability and use in research, teaching and learning.

Dance Teaching Resource & Collaborative engagement Spaces (D-TRACES)

Coventry university

The D-TRACES Project (Dance teaching resource and collaborative engagement spaces) will exploit a unique and significant digital dance resource, the Siobhan Davies digital archive. Following a systematic analysis of user engagement and impact on the local student experience, the project will develop a model for embedding the digital archive within the Personal Development Planning (PDP) element of the undergraduate dance curriculum at Coventry University, thereby generating learning objects for much wider distribution.

Listening for Impact

University of Oxford

This project will perform a thorough, rapid analysis of the impact of the public Oxford Podcast audio video collection of 1800 scholarly items, launched in September 2008. By mixing technical innovations and user engagement it will increase discoverability and reuse of material within teaching, learning and research.

Embedding a vision of Britain through Time as a resource for academic, research & Learning

University of Portsmouth

A Vision of Britain through Time may be the worlds best local history web site, but in no way meets academic expectations for an on-line GIS: a comparison with the web sites created by the US National Historical GIS shows almost no overlap in functionality. This project will add enhanced statistical mapping, a custom mapping facility, and new data download facilities covering historic mapping, boundary maps and, crucially, statistics. These facilities will complement not duplicate existing download facilities at Edina and UKDA. Access to most new facilities will be Shibboleth controlled and restricted to UK HE users, to manage computational load and for copyright reasons.

The project will create a detailed report on a site with high and unusual usage patterns, and unusual success at income generation. One goal is simply to better measure specifically academic use.


Kings College, London

Stormont Parliamentary Hansards Embedded in Research and Education (SPHERE) will attempt to extend the work of LAIRAH and similar projects by developing new methodologies for assessing the value of digital resources, and will implement a series of measures to assess the use, value and impact of the digital scholarly resource, the “Historical Hansards”, and implement a series of practical approaches to embed the resource within teaching, learning and research.

Crime in the Community: Enhancing User engagement for Teaching & Research with the Old Bailey Online

University of Sheffield

The Old Bailey Proceedings Online is accessed by a wide community, but academic users have to date not fully exploited this resource and its advanced functionality in their teaching, learning and research. Crime in the Community will assess the ways in which this website is currently used, and generate a series of new tools and online facilities that will allow educationalists and researchers to make more effective use of the 120,000,000 words of highly tagged and accurately transcribed historical text available through the site.

HumBox Impact

University of Southampton

The JISC/HEA funded HumBox project developed a repository of OER materials for the humanities. The project was a collaboration between four Humanities HEA Subject Centres (LLAS, English, History and Philosophical and Religious Studies), and worked closely with the wider UK humanities community to establish what is now a flagship example of what can be achieved in a discipline through OER engagement.

The HumBox Impact project will undertake an analysis of the impact of the collection on contributors and the wider teaching audience and will investigate emerging working and sharing patterns.  HumBox Impact will use the findings from its study to: Develop strategies to ensure the increased use of the HumBox collection in HE; and develop tools (web site enhancements) to support new and emerging working patterns.