An exploratory study was designed to gain a perspective on the current state of Encoded Archival Description (EAD) metadata use and quality. This article examines the implementation of EAD metadata at 6 digital archival repositories. It identifies EAD metadata elements that evince the most frequent inconsistent and incomplete usage. For this, the header areas of a collection of 150 randomly collected EAD metadata records were analyzed in terms of frequency, completeness, and consistency. In addition to these criteria, 3 best practices guidelines for EAD were consulted to determine how EAD metadata tags are used in local repositories vis-a-vis the guidelines. Analysis focuses on patterns of usage of certain aspects of EAD metadata within each repository as well as comparison across all 6 repositories. Implications and issues drawn from the evaluation are also discussed in relation to the issue of semantic interoperability across EAD digital repositories. Adapted from the source document.
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