The BDPL Ingest Workflow requires a standardized process for receiving shipments of content from university units and individual creators (hereafter referred to as 'the source'). At the most basic level, each shipment should be accompanied by a manifest (using the BDPL Excel workbook template) and each item on the shipment must have a unique identifier recorded in the manifest (along with other available information about the content).


A 'shipment' may be comprised of:

Each 'item' in a shipment should be uniquely identified and listed in an inventory so that BDPL staff can unambiguously identify the item.  If the shipment includes physical media, these should be placed in a box clearly marked with the shipment date and the name of the shipment source.  Ideally, the source and BDPL will have a signed agreement that documents how many items were sent, the date, and the responsible parties.

Shipment Identifiers

The BDPL manager will assign a unique identifier to each shipment, using a basic convention that includes a three-letter acronym or abbreviation for the shipment source and the date the shipment was received in YYYYMMDD format. For example:

This identifier will be used as the filename of the inventory workbook and the date information will be used to distinguish between multiple shipments from the same unit in the Scandium workspace.

Defining an 'Item'

In handling born-digital content, the IU Libraries have typically defined an 'item' as a single piece of physical media (with all of its files).  In this manner, a floppy disk, CD or DVD, USB drive, or other piece of media may be considered as an intellectual entity and all files on the media will be included in a single Submission Information Package (SIP).

In some cases, it may be useful or even necessary to divide the contents of large internal/external hard drives and USB drives into multiple 'items', particularly if:

In such cases, the BDPL manager will work with the collecting unit to define and document the multiple items on the single piece of media.  Conventions for assigning identifiers in such cases will be defined below.

In cases where born-digital materials are acquired by the library via network or FTP transfers, email, download, or other means (where no physical media is provided), the collecting unit has two options:

NOTE: in cases where multiple items will be defined from a single piece of media (or transfer with no physical media) the collecting unit must not move or otherwise reorganize content, as doing so will result in the loss of important contextual information regarding the provenance and original order of content.  In such cases, the unit should work with the BDPL manager to document the items in the BDPL manifest workbook or create a plain text list of folders/files for each item that will be used in the BDPL transfer process.

Assigning Item Identifiers

The BDPL recommends the use of barcodes to uniquely identify items in a shipment.  By employing a barcode scanner, both the source and BDPL staff will be able to enter and search for information in an efficient manner with less likelihood for user errors.  While the BDPL procedures will check for duplicate identifiers (within a given shipment and against content already deposited to the SDA), it is the collecting unit's responsibility to ensure that the same identifier is not used more than once.

If barcodes are not available to the shipment source, the BDPL manager will assist with the identification of a suitable convention.  In the past, the BDPL has employed a convention that includes:

This legacy convention would result in identifiers such as 'UAC2019070001', 'UAC20190070002', etc.

NOTE: if barcode labels are not employed, the collecting unit will still need to print labels for the alternate identifiers and affix them to physical media so that BDPL staff are able to correctly identify items.

Affixing Identifier Labels

As noted above, each item in a shipment must include a unique identifier.  For content received on physical media (floppy disks, optical media, hard drives, USB drives, etc.), each physical object should have its own identifier.  For example, if two CDs are in a single case, each CD should have it's own identifier and listing in the shipment inventory. 

NOTE: for content with no have physical media, the collecting unit should assign a barcode (or other identifier value), record it in the BDPL manifest, and dispose of any physical label to make sure that it is not reused with another item.

Creating an Item Manifest Workbook

Collecting units should be sure to use the most recent workbook template when creating a new item manifest for a BDPL shipment.

A BDPL workbook has three pages:

The first two should be filled out by the collecting unit, while the third will be populated by information generated during the BDPL ingest process.


This work sheet is used to identify and provide contact information for the collecting unit's primary liaison so that the BDPL manager may ask questions and provide updates. The five fields are:


This worksheet is intended to capture information about each item in the shipment so that the BDPL manager and collecting unit staff can identify, search for, and manage content content during the BDPL ingest procedure and after SIPs have been deposited to the SDA. Units only need to complete those fields that are relevant and applicable; all others may be left blank.  The fields include:

   For date ranges, separate the two values by a hyphen (e.g., 2005-2007 or 20090314-20090316); otherwise just include a single date value, if known.


This worksheet will be completed during the BDPL ingest process, which will combine information from the Inventory worksheet with metadata generated by different microservices. 

The fields imported from the Inventory worksheet include:

The BDPL ingest process will provide additional information about the transfer process and the content:

The information in the appraisal spreadsheet is intended to assist with: