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Education

Published on April 3, 2008

Author: Maria

Source: authorstream.com

Pluralizing the Archival Paradigm: A Needs Assessment for Archival Education in Pacific Rim Communities – Reflections on the Research Protocol and Data Collection:  Pluralizing the Archival Paradigm: A Needs Assessment for Archival Education in Pacific Rim Communities – Reflections on the Research Protocol and Data Collection Yang Lu March 21, 2007 Archivists -- The Power to Represent:  Archivists -- The Power to Represent Traditional image of archivists – passive, impartial and objective In fact, at the center of archives – power (the power to create social memory and national identity) Especially in today’s electronic era – exponential production of electronic records and continuous change of the means and media to produce and preserve documents Archival Education vs. the Marginal Communities:  Archival Education vs. the Marginal Communities Archives -- the memory institution of the powerful Representation of the marginal communities -- archives “about the community rather than of the community” Then… How do we ensure that archivists undertake the representation responsibilities without prioritizing or marginalizing the voices and traditions of certain groups or communities? Part of the answers lies in education – pluralism in archival education The Pluralizing the Archival Paradigm Through Education Project:  The Pluralizing the Archival Paradigm Through Education Project A seed project aiming for an initial exploration of the archival education landscape in the Pacific Rim region and providing baseline data to build up future research A collaborative project funded by the University of California Office of the President’s Pacific Rim Research Program and involving researchers at UCLA, Monash University in Melbourne, and Renmin University in Beijing Purposes: 1) to identify the current availability and scope of the archival education across the Pacific Rim 2) to identify a methodology for follow-up research and development activities Research Design – Three Components:  Research Design – Three Components 1st: survey of educators in Archival Science and related areas -- the current status of archival education in the Pacific Rim 2nd: survey of professionals from archival and other cultural and government repositories 3rd: survey community leaders and relevant scholars Research Design – Subject Identification and Recruitment:  Research Design – Subject Identification and Recruitment Identification: 1) publicly available information (websites, directories of various academic departments, museums, and governmental sections, and publications) 2) China: name list from Bin Zhang Means of recruitment and survey: 1) Mail or email 2) Face to face Data Analysis and Results -- Survey of Archival Educators:  Data Analysis and Results -- Survey of Archival Educators Number of Countries and Educators Surveyed and Response Rate:  Number of Countries and Educators Surveyed and Response Rate I. Origination of the Archival Programs: Major Political Shifts and Social Events :  I. Origination of the Archival Programs: Major Political Shifts and Social Events Earliest countries: independent of colonial rule promoting national sovereignty and cultural identify Economic revival and/or judicial stipulations II. Evolution of the archival programs:  II. Evolution of the archival programs Disciplinary location: History  elsewhere in the 1980s and 1990s A movement away from certification and vocational programs to full-fledged degree programs The rise of doctoral education III. Areas of Focus and Targeted Sectors of the Archival Programs:  III. Areas of Focus and Targeted Sectors of the Archival Programs Areas of Focus: All mainstream areas of archival theory and practice Most frequently mentioned: electronic or digital records management Least mentioned: juridical context, legal issues affecting archival access and use, archival collecting, and management of non-textual archival materials III. Areas of Focus and Targeted Sectors of the Archival Programs:  III. Areas of Focus and Targeted Sectors of the Archival Programs IV. Curriculum Design:  IV. Curriculum Design Frequently mentioned: government needs and initiatives, international standards, and social needs (in particular, the state of the job market for archivists) Less frequently mentioned: local history and culture and the historical background of the archival education program V. Consideration of Local and Community Needs and Issues:  V. Consideration of Local and Community Needs and Issues VI. Program Outreach and Academic Collaboration:  VI. Program Outreach and Academic Collaboration Outreach: 1) websites and brochures 2) word-of-mouth and distance education Academic collaboration: 1) faculty exchange 2) cooperative teaching and exchanges of courses through distance education VI. Program Outreach and Academic Collaboration:  VI. Program Outreach and Academic Collaboration Incentives for collaboration: 1) obtain specific expertise 2) faculty and programmatic improvement, 3) lack of local experts and faculty 4) build cooperative relationships 5) exposure to differences Impediments for collaboration: 1) salary and tuition differences 2) local and military policies and regulations 3) lack of time for learning 4) lack of communication channels with other countries 5) need for a shared language of instruction 6) difficulties with articulation of credits 7) cultural differences. VII. Distance Learning :  VII. Distance Learning 50% participate in some form of distance education – mostly short courses (VHS video, online, CD/DVD, correspondence, TV) 15% distance education under development 45% no participation in distance education (difficulties in administering the logistical and financial aspects; full-time status; recent internal changes in program structure or faculty; the inappropriateness for research training) Summary :  Summary The establishment of many Pacific Rim archival programs, ranging from 1950s to 1980s, was closely associated with major political shifts and social events. The traditional cultural and historical imperatives in archival education were giving away to an economy-driven paradigm with an overall emphasis on information, technology and business. Correspondingly, targeted employment sectors are predominantly occupied by government, and increasingly, industries and enterprises. Current archival programs focus on teaching international standards and best practices, covering all paradigmatic aspects of contemporary archival theory and practice, especially electronic/digital records management. However, areas that are critical for understanding alternative perspectives and modalities of recordkeeping are rarely covered. Summary :  Summary Although local and community needs were considered, they were not truly identified or catered to, and played little role in curriculum design in these archival programs. International collaboration on the development and pluralization of archival education is highly desireable in order for faculty to acquire additional expertise and have their own expertise exposed to others, but in practice is hard to accomplish. Distance education was moderately utilized in the Pacific Rim but mostly was short training courses.

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