Digital Archivist (Academic Specialist)

at Michigan State University (view profile)
Location East Lansing, MI
Date Posted January 16, 2019
Category Academic
Job Type Full-time
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The College of Arts & Letters (CAL) at Michigan State University seeks a Digital Archivist to support the management of a sound archive and other digital scholarship projects. This is a full-time 12-months position with expectation of annual renewal.


The digital archivist will dedicate 50% time to the American Religious Sounds Project (ARSP), a multi-year, cross-institutional, religious studies initiative that includes a sonic digital archive, community engagement workshops, and a multi-modal digital platform for exhibition and research. The successful candidate will develop, manage, and implement workflows for receiving, evaluating, and ingesting sound files and metadata into the ARSP archive. For more on the ARSP, see: The remaining 50% time will be devoted to supporting the development of other digital research projects across the College as a core member of DH@MSU. Depending on experience and skillsets, the successful candidate may also have the opportunity to teach a credit bearing course and/or supervise student internships in the Digital Humanities. For more on DH@MSU, see:


The College of Arts & Letters (CAL) promotes an academic and organizational culture which actively seeks out and strengthens diverse voices and perspectives among its members in order to achieve excellence. CAL is interested in candidates of all backgrounds who are committed to the principle that intellectual leadership is achieved through open access and proactive inclusion. We seek candidates with integrity and a strong work ethic, who possess an understanding of what it takes to continuously improve and maintain research projects within a major academic research institution. We particularly welcome applications from women, people of color, LGBTQ, and others who are traditionally underrepresented in digital humanities and archival research. We invite you to apply even if you have not currently mastered all of the skills listed. We seek someone with the ability to collaborate and to expand their technical skill set in creative ways; we’re happy to discuss whether you’ve got the skills we need for this role.


Specific job duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to the following:


Digital Archivist for the American Religious Sounds Project

  • Oversee transfer of existing archive from legacy database to the Vincent Voice Library
  • Remediate metadata
  • Update and refine ingestion process for archival audio and image submissions to project database
  • Prepare field recordings and images for ingestion into the Vincent Voice Library
  • Collaborate with VVL to manage workflows for ingestion
  • Update and manage metadata processing workflow for transition of field recordings into edited clips
  • Perform quality assessment on sound files in archive
  • Coordinate with ARSP team members on other aspects of project

Teaching and Collaborating with DH@MSU

  • Serve as core member of DH@MSU community
  • Consult with faculty and advise on digital archive and digital humanities projects
  • Opportunity to regularly (likely 1 course/year) teach a credit-bearing course in the Digital Humanities program
  • Opportunity to supervise student internships in Digital Humanities projects


Required Qualifications:

  • BA required (MA/MLS/PhD strongly preferred)
  • Demonstrated proficiency working with one more metadata standards (such MARC or Dublin Core) and application of FADGI standards.
  • Experience managing born digital audio-visual materials
  • Conversance with the functional requirements of digital repositories
  • Familiarity with ethical scope of humanities research
  • Knowledge of issues of long-term preservation and archival management
  • Ability to work independently and collaborate with an interdisciplinary, cross-institutional team
  • Experience creating documentation for procedures and workflows
  • Excellent written, oral, and interpersonal communication skills
  • Demonstrated interest in building inclusive environments


Desired qualifications:

  • Familiarity with copyright/licensing
  • Interest and/or knowledge of other digital sound/religion audio repositories (including historical)




Special instructions to applicants:  Review of applications will begin February 1, 2019, and will continue until the position is filled.  Applications must be submitted electronically to the Michigan State University Human Resources web site (posting #551597).


Qualified applicants should submit


  1. a) a cover letter
    b) current curriculum vitae
    c) a statement of teaching / research philosophy that highlights your alignment with some of our desired qualifications
    d) a summary of your experience with diversity in the classroom and/or in your past or planned research endeavors, any experience mentoring diverse students or faculty, any experience mentoring diverse students or community outreach initiatives, and an explanation of how you will advance our goals of inclusive excellence and the names and
    e) email addresses of 3 potential referees.


For more information, contact Amy DeRogatis, Chair of the Search Committee, Department of Religious Studies,

Persons with disabilities have the right to request and receive reasonable accommodation.


MSU is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer. MSU is committed to achieving excellence through cultural diversity.  The university actively encourages applications and/or nominations of women, persons of color, veterans and persons with disabilities. 

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