Bastian / Yakel (15 July 2004) ICA Vienna 3
results of such a project. Our on-going research is guided by three central considerations;
whether there is a core archival knowledge regardless of education venue (History, Public
History, Library, Information, Museums, etc.), the influence that a venue or context may
have on the core knowledge presented in archival education courses, and how the
development of a core knowledge base in archives education relates to the evolution of
Archives as a distinct profession.
Our hypotheses are that a distinct, core archival knowledge base has developed and is
being taught through multiple types of archival programs in the United States and Canada
and that the overall venue or context of the archival courses influences that knowledge base.
Classical theories identify elements of a schema that support distinct areas of work, (e.g.,
professions) including specialized knowledge and systematic theory, identification with a
group, professional culture and ethos, and self-monitoring.
Our study focuses on the idea of
specialized knowledge and systematic theory. The knowledge and theories that educators
have selected as an initial means of introducing new archivists to the profession has a
significant bearing on what an educator considers "core." The following discussion presents
an overview of our data on programs, curriculum, courses and syllabi and by way of
example, focuses on an in-depth analysis of introductory archives courses.
In his 1986 article on professionalism and archivists, Cox noted that specialized
archival knowledge and theory was only partially developed and criticized the bent toward
practice in the literature. Cox also stated "there are only minor distinctions between the
training of archivists and the training of historians or librarians."
Our study does not cover
the quality or do an analysis of the theory / practice quotient in archival literature. It does,