Digital Archive System (DIVA)

What is it?

The Digital Information Virtual Archive (DIVA) is an open digital collections archive built and managed at San Francisco State University, combining scholarly materials with hidden treasures of the campus’s historic local impact. From unique artifacts from the 1968 Student Strike to thousands of videos from the Bay Area Television Archive to poetry readings from the past and cutting-edge present, DIVA collections bring to life the campus commitment to social justice and our place in the San Francisco Bay Area community.

DIVA makes it easy for faculty or groups to establish digital collections accessible to colleagues, students, or the world. Its unique design supports all types of digital formats with a specific emphasis on support for audio and video-based media.

  • DIVA can support audio, video, archival documents and photographic/image collections. 
  • Should you have a three-dimensional collection, DIVA can coordinate with you to find an appropriate means for photo-documenting your collection for digital display.
  • DIVA primarily utilizes mp3s, mp4s, PDFs and digital image files for online display and streaming.


If you are interested in hosting your collection in DIVA, contact the DIVA Team at  We will schedule a consultation to assess your collection’s physical condition, organization and resource needs, permissions and copyright status and educational potential.  Provided that the collection meets DIVA’s physical, organizational, copyright and educational requirements, we will instruct you on moving forward.

After a collection is approved to move into the DIVA workflow the DIVA team will work with you to digitize any analog material, organize your collection according to its intended display and populate metadata in accordance with industry standards and best practices.  Once the collection is properly digitized, organized and has complete metadata, we will work with you to establish a collection area that properly introduces and contextualizes your resources.  Finally, our team will ingest the collection into DIVA and it will be publicly-available online.

All DIVA engagements and uses of collections fall under a service agreement sponsored by both Academic Technology and the resource owner that clarifies roles, responsibilities, use of resources and ownership.

Service agreement to come.

How are people using this tool?

Instructors are able to utilize collections to supplement their teaching material and facilitate a more unique learning experience.  The rich and diverse collections hosted in DIVA serve as great illustrations, research elements and instructional materials that can be easily accessed and incorporated into curricular learning.  DIVA collections can also be searched and linked to through an integration with iLearn, the campus Learning Management System.

Instructors, staff, community members or unit leads can use DIVA to share collections across the University and world! When engaging with the DIVA team, they can receive consultation and help in digitizing their resources and documenting materials.  All collections data in DIVA is stored on University servers and is digitally preserved to ensure ongoing access and discovery.

Students and the general public can use DIVA to find items related to research or topical interests, explore new interests or supplement their classroom learning experience.  Students typically employ DIVA’s search and browse features to assist in their way-finding, and will soon be able to interact with collections through new features we are currently developing.


DIVA is open to collections of all kinds, provided that the resources within it have significant educational and/or cultural value to the general public.  Collection owners must also have copyright ownership or have explicit permission to display resources from the rightsholder, or the resources must be in the public domain.

DIVA hosts a variety of collection types, including fine art resources, historical photos, audio and musical recordings, speeches, historic newspapers, videos, correspondence, documentaries and public news footage, museum collections, poetry readings and podcasts and more.  DIVA is designed to display all types of collections, and our team can work with you to find out how best to accommodate and present your resources.

Once a collection is live in DIVA it can be accessed and viewed by the public from any computer or mobile device.  We will monitor its usage and organization and make any changes to its display that become necessary.  Analytics allow us to track visits, views and downloads of resources, representative of their use by the public.

Resource owners are able to continually iterate and expand upon both their collections and metadata through our new, customizable collections management system.

Collections are each given their own unique collection area and landing page, where they are able to discuss and contextualize their resources. Collection items can then be hosted within any number of sub-collections or exhibitions organized by any context the collection owner chooses.  Popular organizational methods include chronological, geographical, acquisition, event and thematically-based exhibitions.