Title:Meta-Data Resource Discovery and Educational Information on the Internet: The Gateway to Educational Materials (GEM) Project
Authors:Carrie Lowe
Publication:MW99: Museums and the Web 1999

This paper describes the background, research foundations, and future efforts of the Gateway to Educational Materials (GEM) Project .GEM is sponsored by the Department of Education's National Library of Education and is a special project of the ERIC Clearinghouse on Information & Technology. GEM's goal is to provide efficient and effective access to collections of educational materials distributed across the Internet, including those available from museum web sites.

It has long been recognized that traditional searching technologies do not meet the needs of users, particularly when they are searching for materials in distributed collections, such as those found on the Internet. GEM solves this resource discovery problem through the use of meta-data. Based on research on how teachers look for educational resources, GEM developed a set of 23 elements, using the Dublin Core as a base referent.

Software developed by GEM allows users to create meta-data records that describe and point to the education resources. These records are then collected together at a central location, forming The Gateway . By searching or browsing this catalog of meta-data records, educators can find resources more efficiently and with more precision.