What do Archivists do?

Appraise, edit, and direct safekeeping of permanent records and historically valuable documents. Participate in research activities based on archival materials.

  • Organize archival records and develop classification systems to facilitate access to archival materials.
  • Provide reference services and assistance for users needing archival materials.
  • Prepare archival records, such as document descriptions, to allow easy access to information.
  • Authenticate and appraise historical documents and archival materials.
  • Create and maintain accessible, retrievable computer archives and databases, incorporating current advances in electronic information storage technology.
  • Preserve records, documents, and objects, copying records to film, videotape, audiotape, disk, or computer formats as necessary.
  • Establish and administer policy guidelines concerning public access and use of materials.
  • Direct activities of workers who assist in arranging, cataloguing, exhibiting, and maintaining collections of valuable materials.
  • Research and record the origins and historical significance of archival materials.
  • Locate new materials and direct their acquisition and display.
  • Coordinate educational and public outreach programs, such as tours, workshops, lectures, and classes.
  • Specialize in an area of history or technology, researching topics or items relevant to collections to determine what should be retained or acquired.
  • Select and edit documents for publication and display, applying knowledge of subject, literary expression, and presentation techniques.

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Necessary Skills

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Writing
  • Active Listening
  • Speaking
  • Critical Thinking
  • Judgment and Decision Making

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