Archives Institute

An intensive, 6-day course introducing participants to archival work

Note that the Archives Institute is an introductory course and is not designed for those with prior training in archival science.

Note: Due to COVID-19, the Archives Institute will be offered online in 2021-2022. We are tentatively scheduling the course for fall 2021 and it will take place over the course of 7 weeks plus 4 weeks for completion of the final assignment. We hope to offer the course in-person again for the 2022-2023 year. When registration opens, the announcement will be posted to our list-serv and website.

Cost: $800 member, $850 non-member
Textbook is included in registration fee.

Class Size: Min 12 / Max 20

What is the Archives Institute?

The Archives Institute is an intensive, immersion-style experience, where the fundamentals of archival science are introduced and studied in order of their place in the archival process. Each component builds upon the last until the entire process of acquisition, appraisal, arrangement, description, preservation and access are covered and their intricate inter-relationships revealed.

What does the Archives Institute offer you?

  • The Archives Institute is a comprehensive introduction to the fundamental elements that make up the work undertaken by members of the archival profession. The Archives Institute is not a complete education.
  • The Archives Institute delivers information that archives workers need in order to assess both their institutional programs and their future training needs.
  • Through discussions, team work and social breaks, participants in the Archives Institute have many opportunities to consult with colleagues and network.
  • The Archives Institute provides the prerequisite knowledge for participation in special topics workshops and seminars offered regularly by the ASA.
  • Participants who successfully complete the Archives Institute, according to the ASA Registration and Attendance Policy, receive an Archives Institute certificate from the Archives Society of Alberta.

What does the Archives Institute require of you?

Successful completion of the Archives Institute program requires a commitment of time and attention for six days. For best results, students should plan to devote their full attention for this week.
Successful completion of the Archives Institute program also requires the completion of a take-home processing exercise within two weeks of the course.

Registration details

Before registering for the Archives Institute, please note the following critical information:

  • Acceptance of your registration and receipt of a participation certificate upon completion is dependent upon your reading, accepting and adhering to the ASA Registration and Attendance Policy.
  • Your attendance at all sessions is mandatory, Monday through Saturday.
  • Late arrivals and early departures are not accepted.
  • Completion of the take-home exercise by the required date is also mandatory.
  • Education Program Travel Assistance (EPTA) funding is available to institute participants who are current individual members of the Archives Society of Alberta prior to the start of the Institute.

Registration for ASA members TBD

Registration for non-members TBD

Registration deadline: TBD

Minimum registration deadline: TBD
**The minimum number of paid participants must be met by this date or the Institute will be cancelled.


Course registration will begin later in Spring 2021.

If you have any inquiries regarding the course, please direct them to Rene Georgopalis at 



Note: This schedule is intended as an example only. The confirmed schedule will be available on the first day of the Institute.

Day 1
Archival profession

Day 2
Introduction to Arrangement and Description

Day 3
Rules for Archival Description (RAD)

Day 4
Digital Archives
Repository Tour
Preservation Management Planning

Day 5
Physical processing
Preventive Conservation
Disaster and Emergency Preparedness

Day 6
Reference and Access
Wrap-up / Evaluations

Day 7 to 20
Take-home sample fonds processing exercise