Section Meeting at the 2019 Annual Meeting, Austin TX

By Ellen Engseth, C&U Archives Section Chair, 2019-2020

Please join us at the meeting of the College & University Archives Section, Saturday August 3, 2019 (10:00am – 11:15am at the JW Marriott Austin)! 

After a short business meeting, we’ll discuss our working theme of this year, social justice and campus histories. Many of us are or will be involved with campus-based contested or evolving histories, and this meeting will provide us an opportunity to discuss. Hear short presentations by colleagues Lae’l Hughes-Watkins, Brigette Kamsler, David McCartney, and Sandra Varry. 

Bring your questions and thoughts to the meeting; there will be time for Q&A and discussion. And feel free to invite others, as you don’t need to be a section member to attend our section meeting.

A group of Academic Archivist blog posts related to this theme are available online. Thanks to all who have contributed to this group of resources on the topic!

Thank you and see you in Austin.

Your chair,

From the Chair

Hello Members,

The C&UA Steering Committee is excited to see many of you next week in Portland.  In the meantime, I write with some important news and updates from the Steering Committee: 

Election results are in.
We had an impressive and robust ballot, which is a real testament to the strength of the section. Congratulations to the following individuals who were elected:

Vice Chair/Chair-Elect: Ellen Engseth
Steering Committee: Christy Fic, Tracy Jackson

Also, a big thank you to all the candidates. We really appreciate your willingness to serve.

The section also passed the proposed changes to the standing rules.

I also want to thank Carrie Daniels and Benn Joseph, this year’s nominating committee.  Carrie, Benn, and Cynthia Ghering will all be rotating off the steering committee and have each contributed a great deal of time and energy to the section, so please join me in thanking them for their service.

Annual Meeting reminders
Please plan to join us for the C&UA Section Meeting on Friday, July 28 from 11:15 am to 12:30 pm in Room Oregon BR 201 of the Oregon Convention Center.

We will dedicate the majority of the meeting to an interactive and facilitated discussion about faculty papers, a topic relevant to almost all of us.

I’d like to thank in advance our facilitators for this discussion, Dainan Skeem, Cory Nimer, Ruth Bryan, Christine Weideman, and Amy Allen.  All have contributed thought-provoking blog posts to the Academic Archivist about aspects of faculty papers.  Before attending our meeting, please take a moment to read these posts, as well as to reflect on your own experiences working with faculty papers. We hope the session will be as participatory and inclusive as possible, so come prepared with questions and comments to share.

To get you started, here is a preview of the questions the facilitators will help us tackle:

  • Why a policy? (Christine)
  • Is the policy meant to document the institution or the faculty member? (Cory)
  • Does it allow for both proactive and reactive collecting? (Dainan)
  • How a records schedule helps (or doesn’t help) as an appraisal tool (Ruth)
  • How to maintain donor relations after saying “no” to a potential donation (Amy)

C&UA Custom Calendar for SAA
Finally, to help highlight SAA meeting activities directly related to academic archivists, the C&UA steering committee has put together a custom calendar.  This list is by no means exhaustive.  There are many other great sessions that touch on, relate to, or impact our work. The custom calendar is only meant to be a place to start for those interested in academic archives.

I hope those of you who can attend SAA have a great time in Portland. Safe travels to all, and I look forward to seeing many of you at our section meeting.

All best,

Kat Stefko is Director of Special Collections & Archives at Bowdoin College and current chair of the College & University Archives Section of SAA. She has held library and archives positions at Duke and Harvard universities, Bates College, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.  

Faculty Papers: The Records Schedule as an Appraisal Tool

By Ruth Bryan

This post is the fourth in a series designed to provide background and context for a panel presentation about faculty papers scheduled during the College and University Archives’ meeting during the 2017 SAA Annual Meeting.

Cover, Kentucky State University Model Records Retention Schedule

The Kentucky State University Model Records Retention Schedule is a legally mandated appraisal tool created and maintained by the State Archives and Records Commission for university records that are acquired by or transferred to the Special Collections Research Center (SCRC) at the University of Kentucky (UK). This is because UK (in Lexington, KY) is considered a public institution, a body created and funded by the Commonwealth of Kentucky. In Kentucky law, a public record is any item prepared, owned, used, in the possession of, or retained by a public agency; thus, any record created, used, and/or in UK’s possession is a public record.

Based on the KRS definition of a public record, those documents created, acquired, and accumulated by UK faculty in the course of their professional and scholarly life would be considered public records, subject to appraisal for destruction or permanent retention according to the state-wide model university records schedule. The schedule is organized into 21 functional areas (such as general records, fiscal records, personnel/payroll records, bookstore records). Within each functional area, there are series by record type, such as official and general correspondence in general records and university operating budget in fiscal records. Each series has a unique number (Uxxxx), a description of the record type, a retention period, and a disposition requirement once that retention period is met—usually destruction or permanent retention either in the responsible unit or in the archives.

For several years after I was hired as Director of Archives and University Archivist in Special Collections in September 2011, I didn’t give much thought to the selection process for faculty papers. SCRC serves as both the institutional archives for the permanent records of the university and as a collecting repository, acquiring materials in all physical formats documenting the social, cultural, economic, and political history of Kentucky (Boles, 2005). Special Collections has always collected faculty papers (although rarely solicited them) as documentation of the teaching, research, and service functions of the university as well as the history of Kentucky, generally (Mayer, 1992; Laver, 2003). They are almost always donated rather than transferred and have deeds of gift documenting the donation. Archivists have mostly said “yes” to any collection offered, which since the early 1990s, we have been able to do because of the availability of a huge off-site storage space in a cave 30 miles south of Lexington.

Lately, though, I’ve been thinking more about the pros and cons of relying on the model schedule to appraise faculty papers. Faculty operate both inside and parallel to university administration, in a shared governance arrangement that is unique among other state agencies and organizations public and private, for- and non-profit. Faculty are responsible for graduate and unit-specific academic/educational policy. As one of the UK Governing Regulations states, “…faculty bodies and administrators will reciprocally solicit and utilize the expertise of the other as each makes decisions in their respective areas of policy-making authority.” This balance of power is necessary to move forward the mission of higher education, which relies both on individuals’ teaching and research and on shared institutional resources.  On the ground, however (and potentially documented in records), shared governance often means that at a minimum, faculty activities and functions are quite different from administration, and at a maximum, that faculty are (often properly) at odds with administrators and university trustees.

Faculty may thus be creating and using both similar and different types of records than administrators; may need to refer to them for both similar and different periods of time than administrators; and their papers may have both similar and different historical value from the records transferred to University Archives from administrative/business units. Thus, while the model schedule is (properly) concerned with managing the university’s current and non-current records for efficiency in retrieval and new record creation, legal compliance, resource management, and protection of vital records (Diamond, 1995), as an appraisal tool used for records and information management, it serves as an “internal regulator” focused on its parent organization (Harries, 2011). As a method for deciding what documents to retain in a particular faculty person’s papers and for deciding which collections to accept, there are ways in which the model schedule falls short.

For example, course syllabi (series U0415) are scheduled for retention for “five years from the date last offered by the department, then destroyed unless an accreditation board requires a longer retention period” (p. 21). It probably does make sense for a department secretary or the Canvas course management system to destroy/delete old copies of non-current syllabi. Yet, syllabi are documents that individual faculty might prefer to retain longer or permanently as references for other courses. And, I generally believe syllabi have historical value and should be kept, both in faculty papers as well as in department and center records.

Portrait, UK Choral Activities Director Sara Holroyd, 1980. Courtesy University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center.

Another example: In 1966, UK Choral Activities Director Sara Holroyd was denied tenure, first with no reason given and then, the reason given was because she didn’t have a Ph.D. This had not been a requirement in granting tenure in the Department of Music up to that point. She instituted a grievance procedure and eventually obtained tenure. In her papers are her personal copies of correspondence, reports, and memoranda relating to the grievance, which, when combined with Board of Trustees meeting minutes and student newspaper editorials, provide multiple viewpoints on the actions of individual faculty and administrators. According to the schedule, grievance files (series U0644) should be retained for three years after the case is resolved and then destroyed, which I would argue is appropriate for the “official copies” held in the Office of Faculty Advancement. However, when individual faculty keep documents relating to their own grievance actions, they can prove to be of significant historical value in documenting the actions of faculty activists both within the university and in communities outside the institution (which can often look like insubordination or improper behavior at the time) and the responses of administrators (from which the university as a whole can learn).

It seems to me that college and university archivists that collect faculty papers at public institutions in states with public record laws need to have the flexibility to appraise individual faculty papers using both the legally approved records schedule as well as other criteria. So far, I have used three concurrent approaches in my own appraisal. First, in Kentucky, the model records schedule doesn’t include series for “traditional products of scholarly activity.” According to an existing UK administrative regulation about intellectual property produced by UK faculty, staff, or students using university resources, scholarly products include publications, articles, reviews, works of art, and course materials. In this regulation, the university claims ownership and control over all intellectual property, but makes an exception for scholarly products. I take this to mean that individual faculty can dispose of their writings, artwork, and course material as they choose.

Second, in Kentucky, while records must be retained for the retention period outlined in the schedule, disposition isn’t mandatory. There are no legal penalties for not destroying records, but, of course, there are other risks, primarily of having to produce records for legal discovery.

The option of keeping records past the retention period makes possible the third approach: considering faculty to be “capstone officials,” a selection process developed by the National Archives and Records Administration in 2016. Each governmental unit goes through an approval process to determine which of their senior officials are capstone. These officials are generally responsible for agency and program policy- and mission-related actions. Once each official is approved, the National Archives will accept transfer of all the individual’s e-mail, rather than attempt to review it for various record types with differing retention periods. The “capstone officials” concept responds to a 2011 Presidential directive to manage email in an accessible, electronic format by 2016 while also balancing the sheer volume of email records; the risks of keeping temporary records too long and inappropriately discarding permanent records; and the significant records management support and training required to manage e-mail across an institution or agency. I believe that faculty meet the criteria of “senior officials,” because they set educational policy within individual departments and units, while the University (faculty) Senate as a group establishes academic policies for the university. The “faculty as capstone officials” concept allows varying and/or permanent retention of individual faculty papers by considering each individual’s role rather that the record types represented in the collection.

One final piece I’m thinking about: Since a reason for collecting faculty papers is to clarify, expand, and/or fill in gaps in the university’s official records (Mayer, 1992; Laver, 2003), faculty papers could even be solicited based in the extent to which individual faculty have been involved in protests, activism, community outreach/service, and social justice—actions that often get people in trouble with administrators and resource allocators and which are often not documented. Thus, expanding appraisal beyond the schedule and broadening selection criteria is one way in which college and university archivists can also be archival activists.

But, expanding beyond the legally mandated schedule can be risky, too, and, I haven’t pushed very hard on this myself, yet. What do you think? Questions for discussion at the section meeting:

  • Do you have a records schedule? If so, how have you applied it/do you think a records schedule could be applied to faculty papers?
  • Is the nature of the faculty role and the governance structure of the college and university fundamentally different from other organizations that also use records schedules as management and selection tools?
  • Are faculty “capstone officials?”
  • What are the risks and benefits to the college or university, to the archives, to the archivist, and to the faculty person in encouraging faculty to keep certain records longer than their retention periods?

Ruth Bryan, CA, is University Archivist in the Special Collections Research Center, a division of the University of Kentucky Libraries. She holds an MA in cultural anthropology from The New School for Social Research and MA in public history from North Carolina State University.

Faculty Papers: Developing Selection Criteria

By Dainan Skeem and Cory Nimer

This post is the third in a series designed to provide background and context for a panel presentation about faculty papers scheduled during the College and University Archives’ meeting during the 2017 SAA Annual Meeting.

With the resource limitations the L. Tom Perry Special Collections faces, we know we need to collect responsibly. The best way we have found to do this has been creating collection development policies for each collecting area, allowing us to accept gifts with confidence while turning away those that do not fit our scope. The one collection area, however, that had gone without a policy for years had been the faculty papers, which resulted in accepting almost any faculty member’s papers when proffered. With the recent decision to form a Professional Papers Program that would collect the papers of not only faculty, but staff and administrators across campus as well, the need to collect responsibly increased dramatically. We began by looking at what other institutions have done in creating policies and found Frances Margaret Fournier’s advice on appraisal helpful. Tom Hyry, Diane Kaplan and Christine Weideman at Yale University went through the same process in 2002, and decided to apply collecting level guidelines and rely on existing collecting policies when acquiring personal papers of faculty members. We determined to follow a similar approach for most collections, believing that there was an adequate safety net for identifying and acquiring other important materials through consultation with the manuscript curators in the department.

Brigham Young Academy faculty, 1891.

Faced with a faculty of over 1,200, we first sought to establish the overall objectives of the program. Generally, we hoped that through the papers of faculty and staff we could document the social, cultural, religious, and intellectual history of the university. This approach had been suggested by Maynard Brichford as early as 1971, with faculty papers supplementing official records or providing alternative sources for administrative actions, faculty relations, or student life. However, we also decided to limit the collecting of teaching and research materials to faculty members associated with some of the more unique aspects of the Brigham Young University experience. This included selective acquisition of teaching materials from the Religious Instruction college, as well as documentation of teaching, research, and professional service from across campus related to Mormonism. While this limited collecting scope reduces our abilities to document the faculty and staff as individuals, we are working closely with other curators within the department to acquire these materials under other collection development policies.

When we created our policy, we needed to make sure it not only covered those situations where faculty were approaching us to accept their papers – reactive collecting – but also provided us with a roadmap to do proactive collecting where we would seek out faculty, staff, and administrators with materials that we would be interested in preserving. A survey done in 2003 by Tara Zachary Laver has given us many great ideas on how to find faculty papers. At this point, we are confident that our policy does provide for both, although proactive collecting is much more time-consuming and is done only when we take the time to do it while the reactive collecting continues to happen spontaneously.

Since implementing the new policy, we have been able to put it to use on several occasions. For example, in a reactive collecting situation, we were approached by the widow of a retired faculty member who was looking to archive her husband’s professional papers. He had been an astronomy professor and had kept raw data on thousands of scientific studies of gravitational and solar experiments. Because this type of scholarly research did not fit the scope of our collection development policy, we agreed to take only his professional correspondence, a selection of materials that were for the university archives, and some personal papers to flesh out who this faculty member was as a person. We then provided the widow with contact information for another institution we thought might be interested in the scientific data. Our policy made it much easier to accept some, but not all, of these materials.

We also use our policy to do some proactive collecting. We attend an annual seminar for faculty who are planning to retire and provide a short presentation on what we accept and how it is transferred. After the meeting, faculty approach us and we use our policy to determine what papers, if any, we will accept. We also began a project of mailing an autobiographical survey to all faculty retired within the past 10 years. This gives us basic information on every faculty member, helping us to document the diversity of our faculty across campus. A few of the questions ask what their teaching focus was and if they have kept their professional papers. We are still receiving replies from the faculty but will begin to compile the data and use our policy to guide us in deciding which faculty to ask for their professional papers.

Our policy is still a work in progress. We have been very pleased on how it has functioned so far but recognize that it can be very restrictive in what we take. This, however, is how we must work in order to responsibly manage our resources. We will continue to monitor its efficiency and know that over time we will need to make changes to make it the tool we wish it to be.

Questions to consider during our conversation at the annual meeting:

  • What is the purpose of a professional papers program? To document the person or the institution? Or both? How do you document an institution without documenting the people that has made the institution? How do you do that without being too broad? How do you do this with limited resources?
  • Proactive collecting versus reactive collecting? How do you ensure that your policy covers both?
  • How does your professional papers program interact with other existing collecting policies?

Dainan Skeem curates the 21st Century Mormon & Western Manuscripts collection at BYU with responsibilities for documenting the current century’s history of the LDS church, Utah, and the West as well as the professional papers of BYU faculty and staff. He obtained master’s degrees in Library & Information Science and Learning Design & Technology from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. 

Cory Nimer is the University Archivist at Brigham Young University, where he collaborates closely with associated curatorial staff on the university’s professional papers program. He holds a M.A. in History from Sonoma State University, and an M.L.I.S. from San José State University.


Faculty Papers: A Strategy for Collecting

By Amy Allen

This post is the second in a series designed to provide background and context for a panel presentation about faculty papers scheduled during the College and University Archives’ meeting during the 2017 SAA Annual Meeting.

Music scores written by a faculty member, part of the James Greeson Papers at the University of Arkansas. Photo courtesy Amy Allen.

The University Archives was established at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville in 2010. The University does not have a records management program. Donations of university records and faculty papers had been sporadic over the 50-year history of Special Collections and had been integrated along-side the manuscript collections.  Therefore, the University Archives does not exist as a physical space or physical collection but as a unit within Special Collections. As there is no distinct line between manuscripts and University Archives, faculty papers could be considered as part of either collection. When I began as the University Archivist in 2010, I created record groups to sort collections by originating office/department. The arrangement exists to order collections in a database only rather than imposing a physical arrangement, and I use the database primarily for reference purposes to pull together all the collections relating to a single department, including donations from faculty.

Music scores are one type of content faculty members might offer for consideration. Photo courtesy Amy Allen.

The University of Arkansas is a public research university, and collecting faculty research is encouraged by my administration. Rather than an official policy for faculty collections, I created Guidelines for Retiring Faculty, which refers to the more general University Archives Collection Policy. In selecting faculty members to approach about donations, I primarily work with subject librarians who know the faculty members in their area. Often a subject librarian and I will make a joint initial visit to a faculty member, with the subject librarian assessing books for the main stacks while I assess potential materials for Special Collections. In addition to research materials, I look for materials that could fill in the gaps in the university record, such as departmental reports, publications, faculty meeting minutes, and committee materials. Looking back over the faculty papers that I have collected over the past seven years, they have come from a variety of disciplines, including English, theater, journalism, rural sociology, athletics, horticulture, chemistry, music, and engineering.  The bulk of materials have come from humanities faculty.

My philosophy has been to attempt to look for faculty members that might have materials to serve dual purposes of research and university history, such as a faculty member who served as head of a department, who started a department or a center on campus, or whose research complements other collections in Special Collections.  Sometimes I contact faculty members whose retirement was advertised in the university’s news service whom I think might have materials fitting the collection scope.  The collections accepted from faculty members have been a mix of professional research, history of the university (such as the first director of women’s athletics), and materials that relate to other collections (such as a faculty member who was previously the press secretary to Senator J. William Fulbright, whose collection is also a part of Special Collections).  Some of the faculty members I contact are not interested in donating; thus far I have not been overrun with faculty collections.

The University Archives is still not a part of the everyday culture; however, Special Collections as a whole is more widely known on campus with a reputation for encouraging donations. Trying to process previously accepted collections which don’t fit the current collection scope and saying no to a donor are issues that I struggle with while trying to build a reputation for the University Archives. While I am still working on a solution for collections taken in prior to my arrival, I can at least work with current donors. If possible, I try to dig deeper to find something that will fit the collection scope to document the person’s career.  This is where having guidelines rather than a strict policy can help and hurt.  It can make it easier to say yes to materials but often harder to say no. It is often a matter of trying to reconcile the expectations and goals of the donor with the expectations and goals of the archive.

Questions to consider during our conversation at the annual meeting:

  • How do you say no while maintaining donor relations?
  • Would your situation be better suited to a formal policy or general guidelines?
  • What policies would aid while processing previously accepted faculty collections?

Amy Leigh Allen is the University Archivist at the University of Arkansas, a position she has held since 2010. Allen received a Masters of Library and Information Studies from the University of Alabama, is a Certified Archivist, and received the Digital Archives Specialist certificate.

Faculty Papers: Why a Policy?


By Christine Weideman

This post is the first in a series designed to provide background and context for a panel presentation about faculty papers scheduled during the College and University Archives’ meeting during the 2017 SAA Annual Meeting.

Weideman faculty papers blog post image
Screen shot showing search results for faculty papers in the Yale University finding aid database.

Manuscripts and Archives developed its faculty papers policy fifteen years ago.*  We continue to use it to both acquire new collections and respond to offers of others. If you work in an academic setting in which it is expected that the archive will collect faculty papers, it is essential that you develop a policy that you can apply in both proactive and reactive work. If you don’t have a clearly articulated policy that you can easily explain to administrators and potential donors and that justifies the decisions you make, you will end up accepting collections that you should probably have turned down.


One of the important things we did when developing our policy was to talk to highly respected faculty members and Yale administrators (the latter are almost entirely former Yale faculty members) about what we were trying to do. When we have to explain our policy to potential donors to justify our decisions regarding their materials, we are able to discuss who we talked to as we formulated the policy. Dropping the names of those Yale persons with whom we consulted has been very helpful in gaining buy-in of both our decisions and policy, especially when working with potential donors who are Yale faculty members themselves (rather than widows or children). Our ability to rely on the names of those consultants won’t last forever as most of them have since retired, but they have been useful for some time in giving credibility to us and our policy.

As we explain in the article we wrote about the process of developing a policy,* one of the most valuable lessons we learned was the importance of evaluating/prioritizing records creators and identifying the specific subjects or record types in which we would be interested. Knowing the latter helps guide conversations with potential donors towards what might be valuable and helps you steer away from materials in which you are not interested.

Once you have developed a policy, you need to determine who, administratively, needs to approve it so that you have support for the decisions you make. This is particularly important in those cases when you decline to take in a faculty member’s papers and that faculty member becomes offended and complains to your boss. Your boss (or other administrative leader in your library) must be able (and willing) to use the policy to support your decisions and that will only happen if you have spent time sharing and getting approval for it.

Questions to consider for our conversation at SAA:

  • Why do you think you need a faculty papers policy in your workplace?
  • What can you learn from previous acquisitions of faculty papers that might help you in drafting a policy?
  • What assumptions would undergird your policy?
  • Who would you consult with as you developed it?
  • From whom would you need to get approval once the policy is drafted?

*“’Though This Be Madness, yet There Is Method in ‘t’: Assessing the Value of Faculty Papers and Defining a Collecting Policy,” The American Archivist, Vol 65 (Spring/Summer 2002): 56-69.

Christine Weideman has been director of Manuscripts and Archives in the Yale University Library since 2008. She is an SAA Distinguished Fellow and has written and presented extensively on archival core functions.

Faculty Papers Discussion at Archives 2017

By Kat Stefko

Gentle readers,

Perhaps you are already a member of the College & University Archives Section of SAA?  If you are not, I hope you will consider joining us.  The best way to learn about the section is to attend our annual meeting, which will be held this year on July 28 from 11:15 am to 12:30 pm during SAA’s Archives 2017 meeting in Portland, Oregon.

Our annual section meeting is always a good time to get to know the section’s leadership, to hear about SAA business with a direct impact on academic archives, and to learn more about issues of relevance for those of us working in university and college settings.

This year’s section meeting will offer all those things, and more!  I’m delighted to announce on the behalf of the Steering Committee that we have arranged for a thought-provoking, interactive, and educational discussion about faculty papers, a topic that we all deal with in our own ways in academic archives.  Our discussion will be facilitated by Section members Amy Allen, Ruth Bryan, Cory Nimer, Dainan Skeem, and Christine Weideman.

Given that our time together at SAA is relatively short, our facilitators will be offering a series of Academic Archivist blog posts on various topics related to the collection, maintenance, and administration of faculty papers.  Consider these posts your required reading.   While I can’t ding your grade for not doing your homework, I can promise that our time together at SAA will be much richer if you take a moment to consider these thoughtful and short essays in advance.   The first will appear in early May and the last in late June, giving you plenty of opportunity to read and reflect on these offerings.

Here at Bowdoin we recently lost a beloved professor, someone perhaps known more for teaching than for scholarship, but who made a significant impact on the lives of countless students.  This passing immediately raised a question in my mind about what place the professor’s papers might or should have in our collections. Our current collection development policy appraises faculty papers based on a scholar’s contribution to literature more than lives.  Taking everything isn’t an option for us, so how do we best scope our collection development policy to reflect for the nuances and nature of what makes Bowdoin the special place that it is—a place defined by remarkable scholars who teach not just in the classroom but through the example they set, showing students first-hand what it means to be a citizen of the world and to care deeply? There are no easy answers, but I can’t think of a better way to work through these complex questions than with my C&UA colleagues. I look forward to seeing you all in Portland.

Kat Stefko is Director of Special Collections & Archives at Bowdoin College and current chair of the College & University Archives Section of SAA. She has held library and archives positions at Duke and Harvard universities, Bates College, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.  



C&U Annual Meeting Recap

We hope you’ll agree we had a productive section meeting earlier this month in Atlanta. Thanks to all of you who were able to join us. If you weren’t able to join us, here’s a brief recap of the meeting’s events:

News Reports

  • From Section Leadership
    • Election results are as follows:
      • Vice-Chair / Chair-Elect: Rebecca Goldman
      • Steering Committee: Greg Bailey and Christina Zamon
    • A major effort this year has been to establish The Academic Archivist blog. If you have content you would like to see included or would like to submit a piece, please contact the blog editor.
  • From SAA
    • There is a new information brief on Archives and the Environment, which highlights the intersections between archival work and the environment.
    • Council has approved a Member Affinity Group Proposal, eliminating distinctions between sections and roundtables, allowing members to join as many groups as they choose and non-members to join up to three discussion lists, establishing consistent timetables and guidelines across the board, and outlining a process whereby new groups may be formed and struggling groups may choose to sunset.
  • From OCLC Research (Jackie Dooley)
    • A number of C&U-relevant reports are expected to be out this fall, including ones related to
      • web archiving and metadata
      • building a culture of collaboration (digital archivists and IT professionals)
      • removing barriers for use and reuse of finding aids
      • archival MARC (a study of element use over 30 years of practice)
      • laying the foundation for research data management
  • Jackie Esposito from Penn State is currently conducting a survey on the institutional placement of records management programs (the survey closed on August 15). In the future she will be sharing research data and conclusions about where records management fits within the organization.
  • Amy Schindler, co-chair of the SAA-ACRL/RBMS Joint Task Force on the Development of Standardized Statistical Measures for Public Services in Archival Repositories and Special Collections Libraries reported that their first draft is open for comment (through August 22).


Peter Carini, College Archivist at Dartmouth, spoke about the Librarians Active Learning Institute (LALI) and the new Archives and Special Collections program (LALI-ASC). He modeled an active learning exercise featuring a reproduction of a 1799 letter from Ebenezer Hazeltine to his brother Nathaniel; in the letter Hazeltine described inoculation against disease as well as plans for selling his old mare. The exercise was met with enthusiasm and encouraged section members to utilize new approaches in the classroom.

Join us in Atlanta!

Please join us tomorrow, Friday, August 5th, at 1 pm in Salon C for an exciting and informative College & University Section meeting!  In addition to our usual section business items, we’ll have updates from several initiatives and projects of interest to C&U members, and an official unveiling of our section’s new blog, The Academic Archivist. This year we will also have a guest speaker on the timely topics of Teaching, Instruction, and Active Learning. Given that so many C&U section members participate in some level of library instruction and curriculum support in their day-to-day work, and often are evaluated on instructional activities for promotion and tenure, we hope this topic will be of wide interest and utility to all!

Our presenter is Peter Carini, College Archivist at Dartmouth, speaking on the Librarians Active Learning Institute (LALI) and the new Archives and Special Collections (LALI-ASC) program and developing archivists as teachers utilizing new approaches and ideas to promote active learning. Peter will also demonstrate active learning through a hands-on activity and then we’ll open the floor to discussion and Q&A. In addition to Peter’s work with LALI-ASC, he is an archivist/instructor and wrote “Archivists as Educators: Integrating Primary Sources into the Curriculum” in the Journal of Archival Organization, 2009.

Please prepare by thinking on your own experiences with developing courses and supporting curriculum and be prepared with questions, observations, and/or comments for a larger group discussion. And if you have time, check out a recent (July 20, 2016) opinion piece in the Chronicle of Higher Education – “Why a College Should Teach Its Own History” by Corey Ryan Earle.

We look forward to seeing many C&U members on Friday, August 5th, at 1 pm in Salon C!