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Omeka Online Exhibitions

Online exhibits showcase MSU's Special Collections in an appealing and organized fashion. MSU Library hosts Omeka classic for use by MSU students and faculty to create stand-alone online exhibits highlighting their research

What is Omeka?

Omeka is an open source content management site to create and display digital exhibits and collections. MSU hosts Omeka Classic to allow MSU faculty and students to create, edit, and host digital exhibits to display their scholarly research. Digitized items included in the collection and exhibit must be drawn from MSU Library’s Special Collections, Congressional and Political Research Center, US Grant Presidential Library, unless otherwise approved.

Who can create an online exhibit?

MSU students and faculty members can create an online exhibit.  It is strongly suggested that you work with a staff member from Special Collections ( to assist you in curating the digital images for your collection.  

What is required of an online exhibit curator?

Curator's responsibilities include:

  • Gathering metadata for exhibition materials.
  • Gathering and formatting images of exhibition materials.
  • Confirming fair use of each image.
  • Preparing additional content such as narrative text and captions.
  • Planning the narrative sequence and layout for the exhibition.
  • Building the exhibition in Omeka using the above components.
  • Addressing any issues that may arise regarding content or copyright.
  • Reviewing their own exhibitions at least once every year
  • Reviewing their site(s) following a major Omeka upgrade. The Omeka Expert Users Group will notify all curators when a major Omeka upgrade occurs. The curator must address any problems found during review.
  • If an Omeka online exhibitions curator leaves Mississippi State University, they must designate another person from the sponsoring department to continue reviews going forward. Failure to appoint a designee may result in MSU Library removing the exhibit and any associated items from the site or, in the alternative, assuming the curation of that site.

Who from the Library can provide support?

A group of library staff have volunteered to be liaisons for Omeka curators.  Once the proposal has been approved, a Library staff member from this group will be assigned to the project as a liaison.  A liaison can provide assistance in curating the digital images for the collection and guidance on best practices for exhibit displays and metadata creation.  However, the curator has the primary responsibility for creating the exhibit, managing the items and the collection, creating accurate metadata for those materials, and confirming copyright and fair use of the materials. 

Some of the library materials for my exhibit aren't digitized yet. How can I use these materials in my online exhibit?

You will need to set up a consultation with a member of Special Collections ( who will assist you in requesting those items be digitized.

I'm not sure about the copyright for some of my images. What should I do?

Site Curators are responsible for identifying copyright and obtaining the copyright owner's declaration and license to include copyrighted material in their Omeka exhibit. Failure to obtain necessary copyright permission might result in a request from outside sources to remove the content or take down the exhibit. For further information related to copyright matters, consult the Copyright and Fair Use guide.

I previously created an Omeka exhibit elsewhere, can it be migrated into this Omeka instance?

It is not possible to automatically migrate a legacy exhibition (previously independently created Omeka exhibits) into MSU's Omeka instance, but you may recreate it. If you choose to recreate your legacy online exhibition in Omeka, the final product may have a different look and feel from the original. The standard Omeka template places certain limitations on formatting but provides added functionality. Should the online exhibition curator or sponsoring department decide to recreate exhibitions in Omeka, the working group recommends the following approach:

  • The online exhibition curator or sponsoring department wishing to recreate an online exhibition in Omeka should follow the procedures for a new exhibition.
  • As with any new Omeka online exhibition, the curator recreating a legacy online exhibition in Omeka will have the assistance of an Expert User.
  • Curators recreating legacy online exhibitions should pay special attention to image files and ensure that they meet the minimum required resolution. If digital files used for images in the legacy online exhibition do not meet this requirement, the curator has two options:
    • Acquire new digital files, whether of the same object or a substitute
    • Remove the image from the exhibition entirely
  • Similarly, curators should review all metadata for image files to ensure that the necessary metadata is available, or collect any additional metadata needed to meet the minimum standard.
  • If it is not possible for the legacy exhibition to meet all minimum requirements, the curator should consult Omeka Expert User's Group about options for archiving the exhibition.

What if the plug-in I need for the exhibit is not provided?

Contact DPAU email: and we will investigate the plug-in in question to see if we can provide it.

Who do I contact for help/support?

For Omeka support, contact Emily Harrison, Digital Project Specialist, email: