University of Minnesota



Search Tips

There are simple and advanced search options. You can search across collections, or focus within one collection. Search results can be displayed in a thumbnail grid, in a list, on a map, in a timeline or as a gallery. Clicking on an item will bring up the details page that includes a larger view, more information, and related items. Other functions may include zooming, creation of clips, or transcripts depending on the filetype.

How can I do a basic search?

Enter your terms into the Search box and click the magnifying glass. To display all content, leave the box blank and click the magnifying glass.

How can I do an Advanced Search?

Click the drop down arrow next to the magnifying glass and select Advanced Search. Advanced Search allows you to search specific fields, locations, dates, and collections.

What is a Fuzzy Search?

A Fuzzy Search will return a broader result from specific terms.



How can I organize and share DCL materials?

Most items will include an embed link so materials can be added to Canvas or other course websites. You can also create Drawers, which can be shared with a class or other specific users. More information on Drawers can be found below.



What is the copyright status of DCL materials?

Please use these materials for teaching and learning and other fair use purposes. Unless materials have a Creative Commons license or are in the public domain, distribution of these materials is not authorized.

The University of Minnesota Libraries has a copyright information site that can help you decide whether your use would be considered fair use.



The DCL has many departments, centers and faculty contributing their materials. You can search across collections, or search just one collection at a time. If there is a checkmark next to the collection name in the dropdown menu, there will be subsets in that collection which may be designated 'open' content. This open content is available for broader use, and is also included in the OpenDCL.



What is a Drawer?

Drawers are user-defined groups of assets. Given appropriate permissions, users can create drawers, add assets to those drawers, and share them with other users.

Who can use Drawers?

All faculty, students, and staff can create and use a drawer. Faculty members can create drawers for their courses and allow students to have access to them. Drawers can be combined or edited as needed. Drawers will be maintained for as long as the student, staff, or faculty is at the University of Minnesota.

How many Drawers can I have?

There is no limit on Drawers. You can make as many as you want or need.

How do I make a new Drawer? How do I put items in a Drawer? Can I put more than one item in the Drawer at one time?

Search for the item or items you want to include in your Drawer. When your selections are displayed, click on the Drawers tab and select Add to Drawer. Type in a name for your Drawer and click Create Drawer. Then click Add to Drawer to add the item(s) to it. You can continue adding items to your Drawers as needed by finding your selections, clicking Drawers, choosing the Drawer you want to add them to, and then selecting Add to Drawer.

How can I share a Drawer?

Select a Drawer from the dropdown, and select the Drawer Permissions option. Click the Create a new group button partway down the page. Select a Group Type from the dropdown list. To add a course, select Course. Your current courses are listed in the dropdown; select the course you want to assign to this Drawer, and then click the Save button.



File Type: This indicates what kind of file you will be accessing. The options include image, video, audio, DCO, TXT, PDF, PPT, 3D, and SCORM.

Title: This can be the formal title given to an item, or a descriptive title supplied by the collection. Most titles will be in English, but not all. Some items will have multiple titles including a title for a series.

Keywords: These are terms associated with the item that may not be included elsewhere in the record.

Date: Dates are expressed using ca. for circa and BCE and CE indicating Before Common Era and Common Era.

Digital ID: All items in the database can be indentified by a unique number/letter combination. This number can be searched and is often the most effective way to find the same record again.

Location: The physical location of an item, its place of creation or discovery, and other location-related events are each expressed with a string from greater to smaller: Continent—Region—Country—State—City/Site.

Creator: Any artist, architectural firm, photographer, researcher, etc., responsible in some way for the item being displayed will be considered a Creator. There will often be multiple Creators for an item.

Culture: This refers to the culture that produced the item.

Source: This refers to the source of the file. When an image is derived from a published source, the author and publication information will be included when available. Sources for audio and video files will also be displayed when available.

Drawers: Items or pages of items can be saved by the user in Drawers. Drawers can be created for personal or public use.

Description: More specific information about an item may be supplied, e.g., the type of view, the subject(s) depicted, or the content of a video clip.

Style/Period: This indicates the artistic or architectural style of an item and/or the historical period or dynasty during which an item was produced.

Technique: This describes the processes by which an item was made.

Materials: This specifies the substances from which an item is made.

Measurements: This refers to the physical or temporal dimensions of an item.

Copyright: Many of the materials in the DCL may be copyright protected and use may vary by collection. Please see our copyright policies for further information.