A schema is the complete structure of the entire metadata. It is thus called the metadata schema. The metadata schema is very useful in providing detailed description of markup content using minimum information. Because metadata is essentially a summary of the content, its schema need not be too descriptive.
To understand how to create a metadata schema, one should know the basic characteristics that should be contained in it. First, the metadata schema should have few elements. This means the developer should make the description as compact as possible. The general rule of thumb therefore is to write limited elements on the schema capturing the essence of the markup content.
Providing specific names for each element is a must in creating a metadata schema. This is its second important characteristic. As each element of metadata describes part of content, it is important to provide specific name values for each element to make the description simpler.
Across each metadata name value is the syntax meaning. This is the brief information that provides context to the name values. This is the metadata schema’s third characteristic. It is essentially the data that will give meaning to each element of the metadata.
A typical metadata schema should have these characteristics divided into syntax and form. The syntax represents the specific description of elements while the form specifies the media or vehicle used in order to read the elements. For example, the syntax can be reflected as the content summary, location of the publisher, or description of the media whether it is a document, an audio, or a video. On the other hand, the form specifies whether the content is formatted in electronic file, digitized, or a physical hard copy.