ARST 520 (3) Selection and Acquisition of Archival Documents †


MLIS students: completion of the MLIS core courses, plus permission of the iSchool Graduate Advisor.

For MAS and Dual students this is a required course.

GOAL: To give you the intellectual framework with which to undertake appraisal of archival material. Specifically, to familiarize you with the theory, methods, and practice of appraisal of archival documents and to allow you to formulate your own ideas about this contentious aspect of archives work.


Upon completion of this course students will be able to:

  • to communicate an in depth understanding of the concepts of selection, acquisition, and appraisal in archival science [2.1, 2.2]*
  • to make professional decisions concerning the selection/acquisition of archival material and the formation of the documentary heritage [1.1, 1.2]*
  • to develop and implement acquisition plans [3.1, 3.2, 5.1]*
  • to demonstrate a critical appreciation of the pertinent archival literature [4.1, 4.2, 5.3]*

iSchool Statement on Graduate Competencies


  • the concept of appraisal, the principles governing it, and the assignment of responsibility for it
  • the purposes of selection and the methods guiding it
  • the purposes of acquisition and the methods guiding it
  • the role and character of institutional policy and strategy in directing appraisal activities [topic 1]
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