Access to Records at the University of Alberta Archives

The University of Alberta Archives contains two types of archival records: 1) official records of the university that are acquired in accordance with records schedules; 2) records of individuals, organizations, and institutions that document the wider university community (acquired by arrangement of donation agreements). In consultation with the researcher the UAA will provide access to its records through indexes, finding aids, guides to holdings, and other archival resources. UAA staff will grant permission to researchers who wish to consult its archival records within the applicable legal framework of privacy restrictions, access, intellectual property, and individual donor requirements.

Similar to records of other university departments, the records held by the UAA are subject to the Alberta Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. Access to the donated private material of individuals, institutions, and organizations is subject to specific donor agreements.

While most of the archival records of individuals, institutions, and organizations in the UAA are open for research, access to some privately donated material is restricted. These restrictions vary according to each donation. Access to certain series of records are restricted for specified periods of time. For restrictions concerning specific record groups, researchers are encouraged to contact the University Records Archivist.

Use of records for purposes of publication are subject to the rules of copyright. Questions concerning use of archival material for publication, or for any other purpose, should be directed to the attention of the University Records Archivist.

The UAA reserves the right to deny the reproduction of any of its holdings due to preservation (e.g., an item may be too fragile to handle). Copyright legislation and individual donor restrictions may also restrict reproduction of certain items.

Each original format holds unique preservation and reproduction requirements; because information technology continually evolves, formats, policies, and procedures are manifold. Researchers are encouraged to read the policies and procedures for each medium before requesting a reproduction.

Handling Archives

  • Researchers working with archival materials will not be permitted to take their own paper or notebooks into the reading room, but they will be provided with coloured notepaper to use because it is easily distinguished from archival materials.
  • When handling archival materials please remove only one folder at a time for research and return it to its box prior to removing another folder.
  • Ensure that the original order of items in folders and boxes is maintained. Immediately inform UAA staff if you believe something is out of order or missing.
  • Archival materials are very delicate and prone to damage during handling. Please take care when turning pages and when placing papers back into their folders.
  • Ensure that no paper edges are exposed that may tear or chip when placing the folder back into its box.
  • Many archival materials are housed in protective sleeves or enclosures. Please do not remove these materials from their protective housing.