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Archival Processing: Introduction

A guide to processing archival collections


Archival collections are each unique and require varying levels of attention and description. This guide should serve as a basis for standard levels to strive for, but make sure to discuss the collections and your processing decisions with a Curator or Archivist throughout the process, whenever a question arises, or even when something catches your attention as rather unique or interesting.

Archival processing provides greater intellectual and physical access to collections. It promotes preservation and enables good collections management. Generally speaking, during processing, records are appraised, weeded, arranged, described, and provided with archival quality housing.

Instructions and tips for these activities are located on the following tabs.





Additional Information

More on archival processing at the University of Florida can be found in the Processing Manual.

Latin American and Caribbean collections often benefit from a Spanish language finding aid. All sections outlined in this guide can be included. Additional languages can be accommodated as needed; consult with the Processing Archivist regarding any language concerns.

Additional readings of use to processors:

In addition, much of this guide stems from work originally completed by the Philadelphia Area Consortium of Special Collections Libraries' (PACSCL) Hidden Collections projects. More information on these projects is available on the PACSCL project site.



Make sure to track your processing time for our records. (There's a time sheet on the Forms tab.)


Creative Commons License
This Archival Processing Guide by Steve Duckworth and Matt Kruse is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Based on a work completed by PACSCL.

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