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The Digital Library

Project Title: The Digital Music Library: Improving Access to Materials through Streaming Audio

Award number: 0411
Project Leader: Michael Thrasher
Accounting number: 18566
Report Period: mid-year (3 year project to be complete by Fall 2007

Project Description:

  • The NDSU Department of Music maintains a music resource center in room 117 of the Reinecke Fine Arts Center.  Managed in cooperation with ITS and the Fine Arts Computer Cluster, this collection consists of some 800 compact discs and approximately 2,000 vinyl records.  In recent years, limited resources have hindered student and faculty access to this collection; as a result, overall use of this resource has plummeted.  In March 2004, members of the music faculty, in conjunction with ITS, undertook a pilot project to determine the feasibility of streaming audio through an on-campus server.  Twelve compact discs were uploaded to a server and made available to students in the MUSC 340 course; preliminary results indicate unqualified success.  The authors now propose a continuation of this project, culminating in the transfer of 800 compact discs from the audio collection to a streaming server.  This will allow for efficient cataloging and indexing of materials, and provide for instant and easy access to the collection for NDSU students.

Progress toward Milestones:

  • Spring 2005: Background research; meetings with legal counsel to confirm compliance with copyright laws.

  • Spring-Summer 2005: Conversion of CD collection to MP3 format.

  • Fall 2005: Uploading of MP3 files to server.

  • November 2005: Listening library available to NDSU students and faculty at

  • Spring 2006: Additional recordings will continue to be added based on student/faculty needs.


  • According to the original proposal, this project is envisioned as a three-year action plan, continuing into the fall semester of 2007.  The main library is available and in use; however, new recordings (including donations and additional purchases made with internal and external funding) will continue to be added to the collection.  The remaining funds will continue to pay a departmental student worker to convert and upload these recordings to the university server.

    This project has been an unqualified success.  Materials from the library are now available to all NDSU students and faculty, both on and off campus.  Future plans include the potential to seamlessly integrate the library with the Blackboard learning management system.

Funding Summary:

NDSU fund number
YTD Expenses
Unspent amount
Anticipated remaining expenses

Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

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North Dakota State University
Phone: +1 (701) 231-7890 / Fax: (701) 231-7599
Campus address: Bison Court West 104
Mailing address: NDSU Dept. 5310 / PO Box 6050 / Fargo, ND 58108-6050
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Last Updated: Monday, August 08, 2011 1:36:53 PM
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