Archives Selection Policy

Background

This policy is based on Varsity Letters: Documenting Modern Colleges and Universities, by Helen Samuels. The practical application of the ideas and concepts laid out in Varsity Letters are based on Program Classification Structure, by Douglas Collier and the Joint Information Systems Committee's (https://www.jisc.ac.uk/) Study for Records Lifecycle Structure by Elizabeth Parker. Special thanks to the Oxford University Archives for permission to use their Selection Policy as a model.

Use and Purpose

The selection policy should be applied, in the context of the Archives Collection Development Policy. The selection policy is intended to support, but not to replace, the professional judgment of staff when making decisions on the selection of records for permanent preservation in the College Archives. The policy's aim is to ensure that the Archives take a consistent, structured approach to collecting.

The policy is intended to assure that the most relevant records of the institution are collected and preserved in the context of the space, fiscal and human resources available for long term preservation and use. It applies to all records created and held by the College regardless of medium (paper files, electronic data, microfilm, etc). The policy is intended to be applied both for the appraisal of records transferred to the Archives and to the re-evaluation of existing holdings.

The purpose of appraisal is to identify and select those records created or received by the College that provide a complete and accurate picture of the institution over time. Specifically these record should document organization and governance; key functions and activities; major developments and achievements; and relationships with its various stakeholders. In addition the records should be able to show:

  • what the College did
  • when, where and how it did it
  • why it did it in a particular way
  • who were the key staff involved and why
  • what were the results of it
  • what impact did it have and who was affected by it

Selection objectives and functional analysis

Records selection should focus on preserving evidence of substantive functions (eg student recruitment) and substantive elements of facilitative functions (eg marketing strategy development and implementation) rather than some transactions within them (eg receipt of enquiries from potential applicants and the dispatch of prospectuses). In the case of all the functional areas listed below (and, by extension, the activities carried out within them), the functions can also be classified into three further categories which are, in order of importance:

  1. functions and activities particular to Dartmouth College
  2. functions and activities performed by any College or University
  3. functions and activities performed by any large organization

Records which document the functions and activities in number 1 are potentially of greater archival value than those in number 2, which, in turn, are of greater value than those in number 3. Fig.1 illustrates the relative values accorded to records using both types of functional hierarchy:

Fig. 1

 

records of substantive functions

records of facilitative functions

records of activities and transactions

functions specific to Dartmouth College

HIGH

HIGH

MEDIUM

general College functions

HIGH

MEDIUM

LOW

functions of any large organization

MEDIUM

LOW

LOW

The Archives' objectives for records selection are based on the principal functions of the College. These are:

1.0

Instruction Program

Instruction documents activities intended to elicit educational change in learners through the acquisition or improved understanding of a body of knowledge, the adoption of new ways of thinking and the acquisition or increased mastery of a skill set. Instruction includes both teaching and facilitating activities. Facilitation activities include the design and conduct of the curriculum and the instructional program. Instructional programs documented can be both credit and noncredit offerings as well as training or life skills courses offered to staff, alumni or local residents.1

 

1.1 Teaching

The activities involved in developing and establishing the institution's teaching strategy. Including the formulation of plans to implement that strategy. The activities involved in managing the institution's performance against the strategy. The activities involved in developing and establishing the institution's teaching policies. As well as activities involved in developing the institution's teaching procedures and the management of the overall quality and standards of teaching and taught programs in the institution.2

1.2 Curriculum

The activities involved in developing the institution's taught curriculum (including: monitoring curriculum developments and trends in higher education; monitoring government policies and initiatives which have implications for higher education curriculum development; monitoring social and market trends; developing new curricula; discontinuation of curricula). The activities involved in reviewing the institution's taught curriculum to inform ongoing curriculum development (including: reviewing and responding to the results of internal and external reviews of the curriculum, including preparing and implementing action plans to address issues raised.) 2

1.3 Taught Programs

The activities involved in developing and reviewing the institution's taught programs Also includes the activities involved in developing, reviewing the institution's taught courses including teaching through lectures, tutorials, seminars, practical classes, fieldwork, work placements or other methods. As well as the review and student assessment methods such as grading and marking. Also includes examples of student output created as part of the taught programs. 2

2.0

Research Program

The research program documents activities that are intended to produce research outcomes including the creation, organization and application of knowledge. It encompasses those activities carried out with institutional and outside funding. The activities documented here can be conducted by any organizational entity including research divisions, bureaus, institutes and experimental stations. Excluded are Federally funded research centers which are covered under section 8.2, Independent Operations/External Agencies and instructional activities such as classes, workshops, short courses, and training grants which should be documented in section 1.0 Instruction program. 1

 

2.1 Institutional Research Planning

Documents activities involved in developing and establishing the institution's research strategy the formulation of plans to implement the research strategy and activities involved in managing the institution's performance against those plans. 2

2.2 Research Policies

Documents activities involved in developing and establishing research policies2

2.3 Research Procedures

Documents activities involved in developing research procedures. 2

2.4 Research Quality

Documents activities involved in managing, reviewing and auditing the quality and standards of research. 2

2.5 Research Project Development

Documents activities involved in developing ideas for research into formal project proposals including: generating, capturing and developing ideas for research projects; defining research aims and objectives; designing research methods and tools; identifying and addressing legal, compliance and ethical issues relevant to proposed projects; determining requirements for project resources; preparing formal project proposals; obtaining institutional approval for project proposals; obtaining approval and funding for proposed projects from the institution or from external sources through grants or other awards or contracts. 2

2.6 Research Results

Documents the research results, usually through final reports. In the case of observational research, maintenance of raw research data may also be necessary. 2

2.7 Research Exploitation

Documents the activities involved in developing the commercial potential of research results including issues related to patents and designs as well as commercial collaboration and /or partnerships. 2

3.0

Public Service Program

The public service program documents any program element that is specifically designed for the purpose of making unique resources, services and expertise of the institution available in response to a community need. Examples might include consulting, courses offered outside of the context of the instructional program (as opposed to extending it), activities initiated or funded by an external agency or group apart from the institutions normal instruction or research programs. The only activities which should be classified here are 1) patient-care and health-care activities conducted as part of a teaching hospital or health-science center, 2) faculty and staff consulting services, 3) provision of services or facilities/equipment to the community or groups external to the institution, 4) social and cultural events conducted outside of the context of the student services program, 5) public broadcasting services that are neither part of the instructional program nor part of a student broadcasting club. 1

 

3.1 Direct Patient Care

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for providing direct patient care to either humans or animals. These activities are typically carried out as part of a teaching hospital or health-sciences center and are provided for the benefit of the community-at-large. Only those activities directly related to development, planning and policy for patient-care should be classified here. Other activities such as instructional activities or institutional administration should be classified under the appropriate programs. 1

3.2 Health Care Supportive Services

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for activities unique to a teaching hospital, health-science center or clinic that are not related to direct patient care. These include: Medical Support Services (optical services, EKG, pharmacy, etc.); General Hospital/Clinical Support (admitting, medical records, etc.); Retail Services and Concessions (gift shop, etc.) 1

3.3 Community Services

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for resources, services and expertise made available to persons or groups outside the context of regular instruction, research and support programs. These include: Provision of Faculty/Staff Services; Provision of Facilities/Equipment; Provision of Cultural and Recreational Services (lectures and fine-arts series, concerts and recitals-visiting artists). 1

3.4 Cooperative Extension Services

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for public service activities that make resources, services and expertise available outside the instruction, research or support programs and are conducted as a cooperative effort with outside agencies (programmatic and fiscal control must usually be shared for an activity to be classified here) 1

3.5 Public Broadcasting Services

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for public broadcasting services that are neither part of the instructional program nor part of a student broadcasting club. These can include: broadcast programming, broadcast production, new acquisitions and preparations, broadcast sales, information dissemination/promotion. 1

4.0

Academic Support Program

Documents activities that directly support one or more of the primary programs (Instruction, Research and Public Service). Activities classified here include 1) activities related to preservation, maintenance and display of the stock of knowledge and educational materials, 2) activities that directly contribute to the way instruction is delivered or research is conducted, 3) activities directly related to the administration of academic programs, 4) activities related to the professional development of academic personnel. 1

 

4.1 Information, Media, Cultural, Artistic and Historic Recourses

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for activities that directly support the collection, cataloging, storage, preservation, dissemination, distribution, production and display of information, media, cultural, artistic and historic recourses held by an institution to support the three primary programs (to be included here the maintenance of the resources must be separately funded-i.e. part of a formal library, museum or center). Activities can include: acquisition, registration, materials preparation, preservation, conservation, identification, production services and materials research.

4.2 Academic Computing Support

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for computer services that have been established to support the three primary programs. Detailed classifications within this subprogram include: computer operation/production, computer systems support, computer classroom support.

4.3 Ancillary Support

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for activities that directly contribute to how instruction is delivered or research is conducted, but cannot be classified as part of 4.1 and 4.2. Ancillary support activities often provide students with practical experience. Generally they are unique to a particular academic program or department. Examples include: laboratory school, radio or television stations associated with an academic program, College presses. 1

4.4 Academic Administration

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for activities that provide administrative and management support for academic programs. This includes activities of academic deans, department chairs and their administrative support staff. Included here are: Academic Administration/Governance (including faculty committee work, recruitment, tenure review, grant and contract solicitation) and Academic Program Advising. 1

4.5 Academic Personnel Development

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for activities that relate to faculty personal and professional growth (professional meetings, publishing, recitals, sabbaticals, etc) and activities that evaluate and reward performance (monetary awards, faculty awards, award ceremonies. 1

5.0

Student Service Program

Student Service Program documents activities that contribute to the emotional and physical well-being of the students as well as their intellectual, cultural and social development outside the context of the formal Instruction Program. This encompasses 1) extra-educational offerings intended to augment students' cultural, social and athletic growth; 2) services and conveniences needed by students as members of an on-campus, resident student body; 3) assisting students in dealing with personal problems and relationships, as well as their transition from student to graduate school or a fully active member of society; and 4) administering financial support for students. 1

 

5.1 Student Administrative Services

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for non academic administrative activities that support the needs and interests of students. Only those programs that support more than one subprogram within the Student Services program and/or provide central administrative services related to student-service activities should be classified here. For example Vice Presidents or executive management with institution wide responsibilities should not be classified here. Examples for inclusion: Dean of women, Dean of Students, Foreign Student Services, Minority Affairs. 1

5.2 Social and Cultural Development

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for activities established to provide social and cultural development for students outside the formal academic program. It includes activities supported and controlled by the student body as well as general recreational activities. Includes: Student Interest Groups (clubs, frats, organizations), General Student Recreation (intramural sports, recreation programs), Cultural Events (lecture series, concerts, films), Student Governance. 1

5.3 Counseling and Career Guidance

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for formal career guidance and personal counseling services provided to students. Includes: Student Career Guidance and Placement (excluding student employment to defray costs of education). Student Personal Counseling (excluding counseling carried out as part of the student health program). 1

5.4 Financial Aid Administration

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for activities carried out in support of the institutions financial aid program. Includes: Financial Aid Counseling and Evaluation; Records Maintenance and Reporting; Student Employment Services, the awarding of grants, fellowships and scholarships. 1

5.5 Student Auxiliary Services

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for conveniences and services needed to maintain an on-campus student body. Includes: Housing Services, Food Services, Retail and Concessions and Specialized Services (functions such as child-care that cannot be classified elsewhere. 1

5.6 Intercollegiate Athletics

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for team and individual sports that involve competition between two or more educational institutions. Includes specific sports (diving, football, etc), functions associated with each sport including Coaching, Athlete/Team support (trainer activities), Recruitment, Conduct of Events (lodging for off-campus events, cheerleading, concession, ticket and program printing, etc.), Information Dissemination/Promotion (advertising, sports information, publicity). 1

5.7 Student Health/Medical Services

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for activities related to providing health and medical services for the student body. The activities here are generally associated with a campus infirmary rather than a teaching hospital. Similar services for faculty and staff should also be included here. 1

6.0

Institutional Administrative Program

Institutional Administration documents activities carried out to ensure the day-to-day operation and long-term viability of the institution. Institutional Administration ensures the organizational effectiveness and continuity of the institution by 1) planning and executive direction, 2) providing administrative and logistical services, 3) enhancing relationships with the institutions constituencies, 4) providing services and conveniences for the employees of the institution, and 5) recruiting and admitting students to the educational program. 1

 

6.1 Executive Management

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for executive-level activities involved in the overall management and long-range planning for the entire institution. This includes activities preformed by or involving senior executive officers and/or the executive boards including the work of the Board of Trustees, President, Vice-Presidents and Provost. Also included are activities related to institution-wide planning and design carried out by or in support of the executive officers or governing boards. These activities might include policy committees, budget planning, institutional self-studies, and institutional research. All legal services conducted on behalf of the institution are also documented here. 1

6.2 Financial Management and Operations

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for activities related to the day-to-day financial management and fiscal operations of the institution including: Financial Management and Control (day-to-day management, control and accounting of finances), Financial Operations (activities involving the actual collection, processing and disbursement of funds), Investment Management, and Grants and Contracts (not including preparation and submission of grants and contracts which fall under 4.4) 1

6.3 General Admin. and Logistical Services

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for administration of personnel programs (HR, Affirmative Action officer, recruitment), facilities and space management (room scheduling), purchasing and maintenance of supplies and materials, campus wide communication and transport services (mail, phones, printing, email, motor pool, buses), health and safety of the campus population (safety and security, fire protection, trash pickup, recycling). 1

6.4 Administrative Computing Support

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for computer and data processing services that support institution-wide administrative functions. Does not include academic computing functions which fall under 4.41

6.5 Faculty and Staff Auxiliary Services

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for support services established to specifically serve faculty and staff. Some of these services may be fee based. These might include a faculty club or housing services designed to provide residential housing for faculty and staff. 2

6.6 Public Relations and Development

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for activities established to maintain relations with the local community, the institution's alumni, government entities, and the general public as well as those activities carried out to support institution-wide fund raising and development efforts. These activities include Information Dissemination/Promotion, Governmental Relations (lobbying efforts and legislative liaison activities) Alumni and Constituency Relations and Private Gift Solicitation. 1

6.7 Student Recruitment and Admissions

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for activities carried out by the institution related to 1) identification of prospective students; 2) the promotion of attendance at the institution; and 3) the processing of applications for admission to the institution; 4) sales operations, advertising and marketing associated with promotion of recruitment. 1

6.6 Records Management

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for activities established by the institution to carry out, maintain, handle and update records schedules and the disposition of non-current records. Included here is the institution's handling of permanent records for currently enrolled students as well as those who were previously enrolled.

7.0

Physical Plant Program

Physical Plant Operations program documents activities related to maintaining existing grounds and facilities, providing utility services and planning and designing future plant expansions and modifications as well as the acquisition of and management of College properties not contiguous with the campus. It does not cover the actual capital expenditures used for plant expansion. 1

 

7.1

Physical Plant Administration

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for activities carried out in direct support of the institution's physical plant operations. Those activities related to the development of plans for plant expansion or modification as well as for new construction, activities related to property acquisition and management also should be documented here. 1

7.2

Building Maintenance

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for activities related to routine repair and maintenance of buildings and structures including normally recurring repairs and preventative maintenance. 1

7.3

Custodial Services

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for activities related to custodial services in institutional buildings2

7.4

Utilities

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for activities related to heating, cooling, light and power, gas, water and any other utilities necessary for the operation of the physical plant. 1

7.5

Landscape and Grounds Maintenance

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for activities related to the design, operation and maintenance of campus landscape and grounds. 1

7.6

Major Repairs and Renovations

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for activities related to major repairs, maintenance and renovations. Does not include the capital expense or finance of such projects. 1

8.0

Independent Operations Program

Independent Operations documents those program elements that are independent of or unrelated to the primary missions of the institution. This program includes those operations that are owned or controlled by the institution as investments, but only if they are financed as part of the institution's current operations. Operations that represent investments of the institutions endowment funds should not be documented by the institution.1

 

8.1 Independent Operations/Institutional

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies and management procedures for operations that are owned or controlled by the institution, but are unrelated to or independent of the institutions mission1

 

8.2 Independent Operations/External Agencies

Documents the administrative development of plans, strategies, policies, management procedures and outcomes for activities that are controlled or operated by outside agencies, but are housed or otherwise supported in some way by the institution. This includes Federally funded research centers. 1

1.Collier, Douglas, Program Classification Structure, 2nd ed. (National Center for Higher Education Management Systems, 1978).

2.Parker, Elizabeth, Study for Records Lifecycle Structure, (Joint Information Systems Committee, 2006),/p>