Basic Steps

After considering the topic, desired effects, and objectives follow the steps below. (The order is suggested and not entirely necessary.)
1.) Select the objects that will be featured
  • The object selection process requires careful consideration and includes determining whether any digitization is needed and whether there are any intellectual property concerns. (See the Intellectual Property libguide for more on the topic.)
2.) Determine how you want to organize your objects
  • The order objects will go in, the way they are grouped, and how they are juxtaposed are major components of the curation process. It is helpful to play around with the order, even if only to ensure your chosen order is the best one.
3.) Select your exhibit platform
  • Choose the platform most appropriate for the content and the desired type of interactivity.
    • You may already know which platform you plan to use or the one you have to use based on what is available to you. If not, it can be helpful to base your platform selection on the content you have as opposed to shaping your content to fit into a given platform.
4.) Write your text
  • Write exhibit content for the introduction page, object labels, and group labels. (Also see "writing for the web," a topic that applies when writing for an online audience.)
    • Introduction page: Information that introduces or "sets the scene" of the exhibit
    • Object labels: Information that describes and contextualizes exhibit objects
    • Group labels: Information that explains how a group of objects are related, contextualizes the objects, or simply introduces them as a whole
    • This step requires consideration of the intended audience: Is the exhibit intended for a general audience? Or, is it intended for an audience with preexisting knowledge about the topic? The answer to these questions will help determine how much explanation is needed and will influence word choices.
  • Write accessibility text, i.e., alt text, video captions, transcripts (see Usability & Accessibility).
5.) Determine the site organization
  • Design the site's information architecture (structure, navigation, taxonomy, page layout, etc.) (See Site Organization).
    • The choices made here shape the flow of the exhibit and the interactive experience.
  • Organization choices have a major impact on exhibit usability and accessibility.
6.) Make Design Decisions