Heritage Preservation Offers Free Online Courses on Preserving Archival Collections

 

The Connecting to Collections Online Community, a joint project of Heritage Preservation, the American Association for State and Local History, and IMLS, is offering a full series of free, online webinars about the preservation of archival and historical collections.

The new series Caring for Yesterday’s Treasures—Today features a number of courses on a variety of preservation topics (full list below). Each course includes 4-6 90-minute webinars. Participants attending all the webinars in a course and completing homework assignments will receive a certificate of completion.

Registration is free and the first course begins on January 9, 2013. Program details are available online and the full press release is copied below.

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Heritage Preservation is proud to announce Caring for Yesterdays Treasures Today, a new series of free, online courses about the preservation of archival and historical collections. Tailored to meet the needs and schedules of staff and volunteers at libraries and archives, each course includes four to six 90-minute, interactive webinars presented by preservation experts.

Libraries and archives shoulder an immense responsibility to protect and preserve Americas treasures. According to A Public Trust at Risk: The Heritage Health Index Report on the State of Americas Collections, libraries hold 63% or about 3 billion of the 4.8 billion collection items in the United States. Archives hold another 360 million artifacts. The survey also revealed:

  • 78% of libraries and 70% of archives have no emergency plan to protect collections with staff trained to carry it out.
  • Almost half of public libraries with rare or archival collections have no staff assigned to preservation tasks.
  • Archives and libraries have significant photograph and audio-visual collections and, increasingly, digital materials.
  • Tuition and travel costs can be an obstacle for professional development.

The courses for Caring for Yesterdays Treasures Today will address these issues and more. Participants are encouraged to submit specific questions about collections care to ensure that the courses are directly relevant to their needs.

The series will be conducted via the Connecting to Collections Online Community. Each course will have its own Web page with handouts and links to additional resources. When each course concludes, participants will be able to continue the conversation with instructors and classmates via the Connecting to Collections Online Community.

Participants will earn a certificate of completion if they attend all the webinars in a course and submit simple homework assignments. Although registration is free of charge, to enable participants to adjust their work schedules and to indicate an institutional commitment to improve collections care, we ask that participants submit a permission form signed by their supervisor to attend these courses.

Course Schedule:

  • Collections Care Basics: Where Do I Begin? - January 9, 10, 15, 16, 17, and 23, 2013 (all webinars at 2:00 3:30 p.m. Eastern)
  • Risk Evaluation: First Step in Disaster Planning - February 5, 7, 12, and 14, 2013 (all webinars at 2:00 3:30 p.m. Eastern)
  • Protecting Your Collections: Writing a Disaster Response Plan - March 5, 7, 12, and 14, 2013 (all webinars at 2:00 3:30 p.m. Eastern)
  • Caring for Digital Materials: Preventing a Digital Dark Age - five 90-minute webinars in April 2013 (dates and times TBA)
  • Caring for Photographic Materials - five 90-minute webinars in May 2013 (dates and times TBA)

Courses on caring for audiovisual materials, fundraising for collections care, and outreach activities for collections care are planned for fall 2013.

Caring for Yesterdays Treasures Today is made possible through an Institute of Museum and Library Services Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Continuing Education grant to Heritage Preservation. The website and webinars are produced by Learning Times.

Find Heritage Preservation on: Heritage Preservation 1012 14th St., NW, Suite 1200 Washington, DC 20005 202-233-0800 www.heritagepreservation.org