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Surveying & Inventorying Collections

In this training session, staff members learn how to assess a collection that's still in the possession of the collection holder/owner and hasn't been processed at all. Key concepts covered include: What is the difference between a survey and inventory? How to determine what a collection consists of? What kinds of materials and/or formats comprise the collection? How to define a controlled vocabulary to describe the collection's contents? How to identify and report preservation problems? How to calculate the size of the collection in linear feet? How to keep systematic track of those notes?


  • Conducting Surveys
  • Calculating Linear Feet
  • Rachel Onuf, “Archival Management Systems: A Model for Prioritizing Backlogs,” paper presented at Internationaler Archivkongress, 23-29 Aug. 2004.