Records in archives possess unique characteristics
The principle of respect des fonds is the basis of archival arrangement and description
Arrangement involves the identification of groupings within the material
Description reflects arrangement
The rules of description apply to all archival materials, regardless of form or medium
The principles of archival description apply equally to records created by corporate bodies, individuals, or families
Old Princples, 7-8
(7) Archival descriptions may be presented at varying levels of detail to produce a variety of outputs
Levels of description correspond to levels of arrangement.
Relationships between levels of description must be clearly indicated.
Information provided at each level of description must be appropriate to that level.
(8) The creators of archival materials, as well as the materials themselves, must be described.
Revised Principles, 1-4
Archival description expresses professional ethics and values
Users are the fundamental reason for archival description
Archival description must be clear about what archivists know, what they don’t know, and how they know it.
Records, agents, events, and the relationships between them are the four fundamental concepts that constitute archival description.
Records must be described in aggregate and may be described in parts.
The relationships among records, agents, and events are essential to understanding archives and must be described.
Record creators and other agents must be described sufficiently to fully understand the meaning of records.
Events that are essential to understanding records must be described.
Revised Principles, 5-7
(5) Archival description privileges intellectual content in context. Descriptive rules apply equally to all records, regardless of format or carrier type.
(6) Each collection within a repository must have an archival description.
(7) Archivists must have a user-driven reason to enhance existing archival description.
Revised Principles, 8-11
(8) Archival description should be easy to use, re-use, and share.
(9) Archival description is accessible and intelligible.
(10) Archivists must document and make discoverable the actions they take on records.
(11) Archival description is a continuous intellectual endeavor.
DACS Core Elements
* Reference Code (Required)
* Name and Location of Repository (Required)
* Title (Required)
* Date (Required)
* Extent (Required)
* Name of Creator(s) (Required)
* Scope and Content (Required)
* Conditions Governing Access (Required)
* Languages and Scripts of the Material (Required)
* Administrative/Biographical History (Optimum)
* Access points (Optimum)
DACS Added Value Elements
* Finding Aids (Added Value)
* Custodial History (Added Value)
* Immediate Source of Acquisition (Added Value)
* Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use (Added Value)
* System of Arrangement (Added Value)
* Technical Access (Added Value)
* Physical Access (Added Value)
* Appraisal, Destruction, and Scheduling Information (Added Value)
* Accruals (Added Value)
* Publication Note (Added Value)
* Notes (Added Value)
* Description Control (Added Value)
* Existence and Location of Originals (Added Value)
* Existence and Location of Copies (Added Value)
* Related Archival Materials (Added Value)
DACS Principles revision
What do you think?
Groups of 2-3
Apply DACS to your collection
Read desciption from another group
Extensible Processing in the University Archives
No Detailed Processing vs. Minimal Processing/MPLP
Creative approaches to scale are fundamental to archives
We will never have enough resources
Late 20th century records are very stable
Processing is Resource Management
Handling Scale with our Principles
Establishing baseline processing for everything
User-based reason for adding additional description