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DDL Collection Policy

Scope of this Policy
The goal of this document is to formalize processes and create documentation necessary for the operation of Darakht-e Danesh as a trusted digital library. This document describes the policies governing the acquisition, curation, and management of materials in the Darakht-e Danesh Library.

Mission of the Library
The mission of the Darakht-e Danesh Library is to increase access to quality educational resources and to support teaching and learning, ensuring that people have access to knowledge and information that will stimulate their minds, and their personal and professional development. In particular, the Darakht-e Danesh Library collection focuses on educational material that will support teachers in providing high quality education to the children and youth of Afghanistan.

Collection Scope  & Community Served
DDL is dedicated to providing free and equitable access to learning resources. DDL focuses on aggregating open educational resources (OER) and collections of resources aligned to education goals in Afghanistan and that will prepare learners with the knowledge and skills they need in the 21st century. Its collections are designed to serve the needs of all teaching and learning communities in Afghanistan, including:

  • Basic education teachers and students (grades 1-12),
  • Early childhood education teachers,
  • Faculty and students at colleges, universities, and technical schools,
  • Adult and lifelong learners,
  • Those who teach and learn in informal settings such as museums, libraries and technical centers,
  • Anyone with a curious mind who wants to expand their knowledge on a topic.

Collection Accessibility
The library has a commitment to providing resources in Afghanistan’s two official languages of Dari/Farsi and Pashto, in addition to English, ensuring equity and increased access to learning resources for everyone. We will also work to make resources accessible in some of Afghanistan’s minority languages. Resources will also be provided in a variety of formats (print, digital, audiovisual, etc.)  in consideration of the emerging nature of many Internet services and computing resources in Afghanistan. 

Collection Types
Resources in the library may include:

  • Instructional materials, including classroom activities, laboratory experiments, demonstrations, models, case studies, courses, simulations, tutorials, curricula, modules, field trips, problem sets, teacher guides, lesson plans, games, interactives, and projects.
  • Audio/visual materials, such as animations, videos, maps, graphs, images, and illustrations.
  • Pedagogical resources, including teaching techniques, online professional development courses, educational evaluation, and case studies.
  • Assessment materials, such as exams, quizzes, questionnaires, self-assessments, answer keys, rubrics, and portfolios.
  • Reference materials that support teaching and learning, such as relevant background material and content-related professional development material.
  • Datasets that support teaching and learning, including visual, factual, and numeric information, remotely sensed and observed data, trials, and databases.
  • Tools and products, such as open source software, models, or applications for interacting, accessing, manipulating, or viewing resources and data.

Library Needs & Priorities
DDL may use a variety of methods to determine collection coverage and need. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Survey data and usage analysis from DDL server logs.
  • Increased availability to quality collections of educational resources for the library.
  • Requests from funding programs and projects associated with or supporting the DDL scope and mission.
  • Changes in collection scope in terms of subject, audience, education level, contextualization or needed resource type.

DDL will periodically review progress in its collection building efforts and revise priority areas based on this review and on the identification of emerging new areas of need. Collection priorities and resource selection guidelines are outlined in DDL Resource Priorities & Selection Criteria.

Resource Selection & Evaluation
The selection of resources for the library is guided by library needs and priorities as outlined in DDL Resource Priorities & Selection Criteria. Selection of resources is overseen by the DDL Director, with recommendations for resources made by the library’s Content Quality Control Editor, DDL Advisory Council, other library staff, and open education partners. 

The following criteria also apply to resource selection:

  • Selected materials are in the public domain or openly licensed (for more information about this, see our Copyright Guidelines and Copyright Help pages)
  • Attribution is clear and can be noted/identified
  • Accurately translated in local languages (Pashto, Dari/Farsi, English, and other languages, as available)
  • Content is current, accurate and reliable
  • Instructional material is relevant and appropriate for the classroom
  • Free of distracting advertising
  • Easy to use for teachers and learners
  • Provides for authentic and engaging learning
  • Can be served across platforms and devices, to be downloaded and used in digital or print contexts
  • Supports identified DDL projects, such as Kankor Examination preparation, or specific thematic collection objectives, such as Literacy Education

Resource Description
Resources in the Darakht-e Danesh Library are well-described and their bibliographic records conform to the DDL Metadata Application Profile in order to ensure:

  • Successful discoverability of resources in the library
  • Highly relevant search returns for users
  • Easy user understanding of the intended purpose and content of each resource
  • Interoperability of resources across digital libraries so that resources may be freely shared into and out of the library

Quality Control Workflow
When resources are identified as valuable to the DDL collection, according to the selection criteria and priorities outlined, these DDL policies and related guidelines will undergo a quality control review process prior to being accessioned into DDL in order to build the reliability and reputation of the library, and to ensure that the highest quality instructional resources are flowing to the teachers and learners of Afghanistan.

DDL Accessioning and Quality Control Workflow

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Deaccessioning Content
Content in DDL will be continuously reviewed to ensure it aligns with this Collection Policy and DDL Resource Priorities & Selection Guidelines. Resources that are out of date, broken or that do not align to these policies will be removed and deaccessioned from the collection according to the DDL Weeding Guidelines.

Related Documents
DDL Resource Priorities & Selection Guidelines
DDL Resource Quality Checklist
DDL Weeding Guidelines
DDL About Us

"Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel." ~ Socrates
"If your tree brings the fruit of knowledge / it shall bring the sky down to the earth” - Nasir Khusraw (1004 – 1088 AD)
The great aim of education is not knowledge but action. -- Herbert Spencer
Seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave. -- Hadith
The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires. ― William Arthur Ward
Asking good questions is half of learning. -- Sufi saying
Those who educate children well are more to be honored than they who produce them; for these only gave them life, those the art of living well. ― Aristotle
Enlightenment must come little by little-otherwise it would overwhelm. -- Idries Shah
We were scared. But school was where we wanted to be. -- Shabana Basij-Rasikh, Afghan education activist
Seeking knowledge is obligatory upon every Muslim, male and female. -- Hadith
Education is a living treasure for all humankind. ~ Ehsan Ullah, Founder, Kandahar Institute of Modern Studies
I have always imagined that paradise will be a kind of library. ~ Jorge Luis Borges
A teacher is a candle that burns to enlighten others. ~ Afghan proverb
There is a path to the top of the highest mountain. ~ Afghan proverb
Drop by drop a river is made. ~ Afghan proverb
We should all attempt to acquire as much knowledge as possible in order that we may render our services to society in the manner of the women of early Islam. -- Queen Soraya of Afghanistan, 1926
If you learn even one word more than yesterday, you will be totally a different person.