The AABC Archivist's Toolkit: Introduction to Archives

On this page:

  • General Resources 
  • What is an Archivist?
  • Archival Theory and Principles
  • Terminology
  • Ethics
  • Trauma Informed Archives Resources
  • Publications

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Your input is appreciated! Thank you.



Association of Canadian Archivists

Society of American Archivists

Archives Canada Links

Archives Society of Alberta - Archives Tutorial

Library of Congress: Librarians and Archivists: Tools and Resources for Information Professionals

Canadian Council of Archives Toolkit

Archives Canada: Directory of Miscellaneous Resources


Managing Archives (IRMT)


WHAT IS AN ARCHIVIST?                         

What is an Archivist?

So you want to be an Archivist

What do Archivists do all day?



The Spirit of Total Archives: Seeking a Sustainable Archival System

The Tyranny of the Medium: A Comment on "Total Archives"

What is Archival Theory and Why is it Important?

Archival Theory and Practice: Between Two Paradigms

The Place of Theory in Archival Practice

Archival Theory and the Dutch Manual

The Power of the Principle of Provenance

Theoretical Principles and Practical Problems of Respect des Fonds in Archival Science



Rules for Archival Description (RAD) - Appendix D. Glossary.

ASA Archives Terminology: select terms

SAA Dictionary of Archives Terminology (new online version as of April 2020)

AABC Appendix I: Glossary of Archival Terms, A Manual for Small Archives



ACA Canadian Code of Ethics

SAA Code of Ethics for Archivists

ICA Code of Ethics



Archives and Records Association UK. (2017). Emotional Support Guides:

Laurent, N. & Hart, M. (2018). “Emotional Labor and Archival Practice - Reflection”. Journal of the Society of North Carolina Archivists, 15, pp.13-22:

Sloan, K, Vanderfluit, J and Douglas, J (2019). “Not 'Just My Problem to Handle': Emerging Themes on Secondary Trauma and Archivists”. Journal of Contemporary Archival Studies, Vol 6, Article 20:

Thorpe, K and Willis, C (2019). “Aboriginal Histories in Australia Government Archives: Working with Records of Trauma”. Acid Free:

Weber, G (2019). “Gratitude in the Archives”. Garland Magazine:

Australian Society of Archivists. (2020). A trauma-informed approach to managing archives: online course:

Laurent, N. & Wright, K. (2020). “A trauma-informed approach to managing archives: a new online course”. Archives and Manuscripts, 48 (1), pp.80-87:, full text available

Douglas, J et al, Hard Feelings: on the intimate and emotional dimensions of archival work (blog):

Laurent, N. & Hart, M. (2020). “Building a trauma-informed community of practice”. Education for Information, 37 (1), pp.1-6:, full text available



(for publication sources click here

Archives:  Principles and Practices / by Laura Millar (Neil-Schuman Publishers Inc., 2010)

Understanding Archives and Manuscripts (Archival Fundamentals Series II) / by James M. O'Toole and Richard J. Cox. (Society of American Archivists, 2006)

Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology (Archival Fundamentals Series. II) / Richard Pearce-Moses. (Society of American Archivists, 2005)

Archival Theory, Records, and the Public/ by Trevor Livelton. (Scarecrow Press, January 2004)

Imagining Archives: Essays and Reflections by Hugh A. Taylor/ Terry Cook andGordon Dodds (eds.) (Scarecrow Press, Inc., Association of Canadian Archivists & Society of American Archivists, 2003)

Ethics and the Archival Profession: Introduction and Case Studies / Karen M. Benedict. (Society of American Archivists, 2003)

The ANLA Resource Binder for Small Archives. (Association of Newfoundland and Labrador Archives, 2002)

Managing Records as Evidence and Information / Richard J. Cox. (Quorum Books, 2001)

Keeping Archives/ Judith Ellis (ed), 2nd ed. (Melbourne: D. W. Thorpe and the Australian Society of Archivists, 1993)

Canadian Archival Studies and the Rediscovery of Provenance/ Tom Nesmith (ed.) (Association of Canadian Archivists, Society of American Archivists,

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