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Types of Fields and Suggested Use
Artstor-Specific Fields
System Generated Fields
Default Values
Read-Only Fields
Required Fields
Character Limits

Types of Fields and Suggested Use

Text/Text Area Fields | Number Fields | Alphanumeric Fields | Date Fields| List Fields | Linked Fields | Checkboxes

Text/Text Area Fields

Text and Text Area fields are free-text so catalogers may enter any type of information.For text area fields, use the pipe symbol | to create line breaks in the published environment.

Number Fields

Number fields only accept numeric values, and are often limited to dates in the form of years. To apply BCE dates, enter a negative symbol (-) before the date. When filtering by number fields, you may use numeric values along with (>) greater than, (<) less than, or (=) equal to symbols.

Alphanumeric Fields

Alphanumeric fields support alphabetic and numeric characters, such as accession numbers. When filtering by alphanumeric fields, you can use greater than or equal to ( ≥), less than or equal to (≤), and/or equal to (=) symbols. Please note that filtering in this field will disregard special characters and spaces.

Date Fields

A date field is indicated by the calendar icon. By default, the format of the field is dd/mm/yyyy. From within the field, click the calendar icon to display the calendar. Select a day from the calendar, or navigate forward/backward through months using the arrows in the upper left and right of the calendar. Hover over the year to select a different year..

List Fields

List fields will include the list iconIcon to indicate a list field type. and they do not allow a user to edit selected terms. Click on this icon to consult the controlled list connected to the field. This will open the controlled list where you can search for a specific term or browse. Check the terms you want to use and then select Link Term. To remove terms, click X next to the linked term.

Linked Fields

Linked fields can be linked to an internal or external vocabulary source, and are indicated by the book icon at the beginning of the text box.Icon to indicate a linked field type. Forum integrates with three Getty vocabularies: Union List of Artist Names, Art and Architecture Thesaurus, and Thesaurus of Geographic Names. Click on the book icon to consult a vocabulary connected to the field. This will open up a window where you search for your desired term. For externally linked authorities, you will need to copy/paste or type in your term and identifier from the source. Select from one of the three linking options:

  • Link Only: The term will appear below the field as a linked item. No terms will appear as display text for that field.
  • Link & Append: the term will be added to existing data within the field.
  • Link & Overwrite: the term will replace any existing data within the field.


Referred to as Boolean (Checkbox) in the Administrative Tools, this field applies a True, False, or null value (N/A). The field defaults as a null value, which is shown as a blue box. Clicking inside the box will mark the field as False, shown as empty. Click again to mark the field as True, shown as a checkmark.


Artstor-Specific Fields

Artstor Classification | Country | Earliest and Latest Date

There are four Artstor-specific fields that you are always recommended to include in your project: Earliest Date, Latest Date, Artstor Classification, and Country. These fields have been made available for your projects to utilize the faceted searching and browsing functionality in Artstor. When configuring your publishing target, these fields need to be mapped to specific target fields for the faceting option to be applied.

  • Earliest Date -> Earliest Date
  • Latest Date -> Latest Date
  • Artstor Classification -> ArtstorBrowseClass
  • Country -> ArtstorBrowseGeography

Note that the fields, as mapped, are set by default to be “Displayable = true,” but they do not display in Artstor, regardless of this setting. These fields are meant to work entirely behind the scenes to aid the discovery of content. Once your records are cataloged and published, users can access them via the browse by Classification or browse by Geography functionality, or apply filters and facets in the advanced search and results pages.

For more information about these and the other 42 Artstor-supplied lists that are available at your option, please see Lists at a Glance.

The two recommended list fields are:

Artstor Classification

Term used to categorize a work by grouping it together with other works on the basis of similar characteristics, including materials, form, shape, function, etc. The 16 terms accepted by Artstor include:

  • Architecture and City Planning
  • Decorative Arts, Utilitarian Objects and Interior Design
  • Drawings and Watercolors
  • Fashion, Costume and Jewelry
  • Film, Audio, Video, and Digital Art
  • Garden and Landscape
  • Graphic Design and Illustration
  • Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Manuscripts and Manuscript Illuminations
  • Maps, Charts and Graphs
  • Paintings
  • Performing Arts (including Performance Art)
  • Photographs
  • Prints
  • Science, Technology and Industry
  • Sculpture and Installations


A type of “nationality” field, though not in adjectival form; country refers to the modern name of the country, geographic region, or inhabited place from which the artist came. A list of those terms accepted by Artstor can be accessed by downloading the list of terms from Forum.

To download the list of Artstor Country terms:

  1. Log into the Cataloging Tools and navigate to the “Controlled Lists” tab.
  2. In the list panel on the left, select the “Artstor Country” list name.
  3. Click the Options menu in the right corner and select Export All Terms.
  4. The Excel spreadsheet includes such data as the Term ID, Level (“Community” terms are provided by Artstor, “Local” terms have been added by users at your institution), Name of the term, and additional information, such as Source, Data Date, Description, Notes, and Active status.

Earliest and Latest Date

Since Artstor needs to determine a single date for chronological placement, it calculates the average between earliest and latest date and uses the result as the sorting or searching value. Below, you will find some best practice guidelines from our metadata staff for generating earliest and latest date values.

  • Both of these date fields must be completed in order for your assets to appear in a filtered search in Artstor.
  • In the earliest and latest date fields, use the hyphen or negative sign (“-“) to indicate a BCE date. For example, -1000 results in 1000 BCE.
  • For a known work date in a single year, eg. 1963: earliest date 1963, latest date 1963.
  • For circa dates in a single year, eg. ca 1963: earliest date 1963, latest date 1963.
  • If there is a date range, you should provide both dates, eg. 1963-66: earliest date 1963, latest date 1966

System Generated Fields

Auto-generated fields contain data that is created by actions performed within the system. These fields appear on the projects page in the Cataloging Tools. They are automatically created and are non-editable. They are not searchable in end-user environments but can be searched and sorted in your Forum project:

  • SSID: System-Supplied Identification Number
  • Filename: Image filename
  • Created by: User who created the item
  • Created on: Date the item was created
  • Updated on: Date the item was last updated
  • Updated by: User who last updated or modified the item
  • Published on: Date the item was published to the target collection

Default Values

Each time a new item is created, default values can be used to auto-populate certain fields. Fields will be populated with default values when creating new items through:

  • using the options menu in the item panel
  • uploading a new media file
  • creating a new item during an Excel import with the SSID entered as NEW and the field left blank

Default values may be overwritten or modified in the item and with new or edited data in Excel imports, unless the field is read-only in the cataloging screen.

Read-Only Fields

The default behavior for fields are to always be editable. However, administrators can set up read-only fields in the cataloging screen so that different fields or entire screens may be rendered as read-only for different catalogers. Read-only fields appear gray in the cataloging screen and cannot be edited. When a cataloger is uploading Excel spreadsheets to create new records or modify existing ones, any fields that are read-only in their cataloging screens will not accept new or modified data. It is recommended that at least administrators have access to a full screen of editable fields in order to prevent missing data.Example of a read-only field.

Required Fields

Whether publishing a single item or multiple items in batch, if data is missing from a required field, the publish request will not be accepted. The system will provide a list of SSIDs for the cataloger to find and edit the records with the appropriate data before publishing. Always be sure to let your catalogers know which fields are required for publishing when establishing workflows. One suggestion is you could add an asterisk * to the field label to indicate a required field when editing a cataloging screen.

Character Limits

There is no limit to the number of characters that can be saved in any field type. However, there are limitations in other programs for importing and exporting data with Excel.