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ARCHIVES Home

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ARCHIVES  June 2006, Week 3

ARCHIVES June 2006, Week 3

Subject:

Re: Archival Education

From:

"[log in to unmask]" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Fri, 16 Jun 2006 16:18:55 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (150 lines)

I might as well come clean myself: I started working libraries when I was 12, and about 15 years of my working life has been in libraries and archives of all sorts, doing everything from shelving to cataloging to processing and so forth.  I've also spent a large amount of time getting the PhD. in history, and mainly consider myself to be an historian.  I am currently getting my certificate in archival management and historical editing, a program in a history department. I chose this instead of a traditional MLIS program because of the greater emphasis on historical theory and techniques, but I could end up getting the MLIS as well.  So far, I have found my formal education and my life experience to be extremely complementary.  

-----Original Message-----
>From: Joan Goodbody <[log in to unmask]>
>Sent: Jun 16, 2006 4:09 PM
>To: "[log in to unmask]" <[log in to unmask]>
>Subject: RE: Archival Education
>
>Since the question was asked. I am a librarian, but was a museum
>professional before that (about 18 years) and put small archives
>together at many museums. Before that worked in and helped with archival
>type projects extensively since I was a teenager - that's what you get
>for having a father that is a historian/communications expert.  Look
>forward to seeing the answers to this one. Joan Goodbody, MTU, Houghton,
>MI. 
>
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Archives & Archivists [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On
>Behalf Of [log in to unmask]
>Sent: Friday, June 16, 2006 4:01 PM
>To: [log in to unmask]
>Subject: Re: Archival Education
>
>
>The question of education vs. experience raises (at least to me) this
>question: How many of you (archivists, librarians, et al.) had
>experience in archives and/or libraries BEFORE your formal training? 
> 
>-----Original Message-----
>>From: Richard Cox <[log in to unmask]>
>>Sent: Jun 16, 2006 3:40 PM
>>To: [log in to unmask]
>>Subject: Archival Education
>>
>>Beth Moser writes, "I don't think that there's a right way to go about 
>>becoming an archivist -- whether it's from a graduate history 
>>perspective or a MLS perspective. This has long been a debate in the 
>>archival world."  John Erdmann writes, "I wonder, how did archivists 
>>and librarians ever got along before requiring advanced degrees and/or 
>>certifications?  Are the respective fields better for it?  I have 
>>talked to so many librarians who have told me that their experience in 
>>library school was virtually worthless.  Many have told me that the 
>>first job offered the best training."  Erdmann, in a subsequent 
>>message, writes: "Must that education and training come in the form of 
>>advanced degrees at expensive universities, or could it come from the 
>>within the work environment, study on one's own, and at conferences?"
>>
>>There is a right way to become an archivist and not everything can be 
>>learned on the job.  There is a knowledge to our field (if there is 
>>not, then we are not a discipline) and there is a need for education 
>>(different from training).  As two recent observers about higher 
>>education have noted, "To succeed in education is not to succeed in 
>>what one sets out to do, or even to succeed in doing whatever is within
>
>>the realm of possibility; success means to succeed in doing something 
>>worth doing." (James Engell and Anthony Dangerfield, Saving Higher 
>>Education in the Age of Money [Charlottesville: University of Virginia 
>>Press, 2005], p. 128]  We need education, not merely apprenticeship, 
>>credentialing, practical information, etc., because the archival 
>>mission is important to society (and, actually, there is quite a range 
>>to salaries for such positions).
>>
>>Leon Miller writes, "In other words, your title, your degrees, where 
>>you got your training and experience, are all pretty much crap. The
>archival profession needs to do a far, far better job of making the
>point that regardless of someone's title, a person responsible for
>archival collections had damn well better be an archivist, had better
>have a thorough professional-level understanding of archival theory and
>practice (which, in the US today, usually means an MLS with a minimum of
>twelve semester credit hours in areas defined as core archival knowledge
>followed by archival certification within a year or two of graduation,
>although that is not quite yet the only route) and had better be able to
>apply archival theory and practice to their work."  Yes, Leon is
>correct.  It is sad that those who complain about salary and recognition
>also are usually the ones who lament the need for real education.
>Graduate archival education has changed quite a bit for the better over
>the past!
>>  few de
>>cades, and there are many programs far exceeding what Leon describes in
>his message.  Unfortunately, the profession generally seems ignorant of
>what this education represents and less than interested in arguing for
>it to be even better than it is.  No, you can't learn all you need to
>know on the job or by reading quietly at home a few basic manuals.  Even
>to suggest this is to reflect why a stronger foundational education is
>needed.
>>
>>--
>>Richard J. Cox
>>Professor
>>Department of Library and Information Sciences
>>School of Information Sciences
>>University of Pittsburgh
>>Editor, Records & Information Management Report
>>Pittsburgh, PA 15260
>>Voice:  412-624-3245
>>FAX:    412-648-7001
>>e-mail: [log in to unmask]
>>homepage: http://www2.sis.pitt.edu/%7Ercox/
>>
>>"What we would like to do is change the world - to make it a little 
>>simpler for people to feed, clothe, and shelter themselves as God
>intended for them to do. And we can change the world: we can work for
>the oasis, the little cell of joy and peace in a harried world.  We can
>throw our pebble in the pond and be confident that its ever widening
>circle will reach around the world." - Dorothy Day
>>
>>A posting from the Archives & Archivists LISTSERV List sponsored by the
>
>>Society of American Archivists, www.archivists.org. For the terms of 
>>participation, please refer to 
>>http://www.archivists.org/listservs/arch_listserv_terms.asp.
>>
>>To subscribe or unsubscribe, send e-mail to
>[log in to unmask]
>>      In body of message:  SUB ARCHIVES firstname lastname
>>                    *or*:  UNSUB ARCHIVES
>>To post a message, send e-mail to [log in to unmask]
>>
>>Or to do *anything* (and enjoy doing it!), use the web interface at
>>     http://listserv.muohio.edu/archives/archives.html
>>
>>Problems?  Send e-mail to Robert F Schmidt <[log in to unmask]>
>
>A posting from the Archives & Archivists LISTSERV List sponsored by the
>Society of American Archivists, www.archivists.org. For the terms of
>participation, please refer to
>http://www.archivists.org/listservs/arch_listserv_terms.asp.
>
>To subscribe or unsubscribe, send e-mail to [log in to unmask]
>      In body of message:  SUB ARCHIVES firstname lastname
>                    *or*:  UNSUB ARCHIVES
>To post a message, send e-mail to [log in to unmask]
>
>Or to do *anything* (and enjoy doing it!), use the web interface at
>     http://listserv.muohio.edu/archives/archives.html
>
>Problems?  Send e-mail to Robert F Schmidt <[log in to unmask]>

A posting from the Archives & Archivists LISTSERV List sponsored by the Society of American Archivists, www.archivists.org.
For the terms of participation, please refer to http://www.archivists.org/listservs/arch_listserv_terms.asp.

To subscribe or unsubscribe, send e-mail to [log in to unmask]
      In body of message:  SUB ARCHIVES firstname lastname
                    *or*:  UNSUB ARCHIVES
To post a message, send e-mail to [log in to unmask]

Or to do *anything* (and enjoy doing it!), use the web interface at
     http://listserv.muohio.edu/archives/archives.html

Problems?  Send e-mail to Robert F Schmidt <[log in to unmask]>

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