The State of Archival Instruction

The Problem

Traditional archival and library instruction consist of showing students online catalogs, the parts of the finding aid, quick overviews of collections available at the institution that delivers the instruction session. These sessions are usually delivered to history students only. This type of instruction rarely takes into account student learning needs and engaged pedagogy. More importantly it does not provide them with transferable skills or promote information literacy. It is time for the archival community to reevaluate the way we approach instruction so that we may better serve our users, expand our user base and promote learning in general.

Archives discuss informing the public about the use and importance of archives


What does the most current archival literature say in regards to instruction?
What are some trends in library instruction and higher education pedagogy that maybe adapted to archival instruction?
What are archives currently doing to reach new user groups through instruction programs?

Survey of archival literature.
Survey of library instruction literature.
Investigate Information literacy standards
Examination of archival instruction programs in Georgia, for online digital collections, and at COPLAC institution

The potential research population:
Archives with active instruction programs.
Library instruction programs.
Faculty members using engaged pedagogy.

Higher Education is constantly evaluating how course are taught and how content is delivered to students. Many school are trying new ways of engaging students in their learning. It’s important for archives to take a look at how we train students, and researchers to use our collections and to find resources

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