The job of a Librarian and Archivist provides many standards and codes to follow in order to provide a justified platform within scholarly fields. The Society of American Archivists provides a vision and mission for this organization to achieve greatness and expand people’s understanding in this field of work. It is important to recognize that documenting special collections incorporate places such as libraries, colleges, and government buildings that need their histories recorded (Society of American Archivists). An important concept and belief that I have heard within this field, “Everything has a history”, this statement, I hold true, in an archivist's work, these professionals access histories from the past that provide hidden narratives in order to give back to the public. Professionally, the SSA is known as North America’s expert organization composed of archivists who devote their time and efforts to archives (Society of American Archivists style="user-select: auto;">). Archivists have the knowledge to develop a new perspective for the world to see, “Archivists systematically identify, select, protect, organize, describe, preserve, and make available to users archival materials” (Society of American Archivists).

The importance of the Society of American Archivists provides access to important documents for the public’s research projects and knowledge. Such as standards, these archivists provide have to follow a set standard. As an archivist searching and digging through the past, these scholarly professionals must embody certain values and ethics into their work. These values will provide their work with motivation and expand their ‘user communities’ (Society of American Archivists xii). Because of the ethics surrounding scholarly archival research, it will exhibit a deeper and more meaningful experience in user communities (Society of American Archivists xii). Therefore, some connections I have made based on "Describing Archives: A Content Standard" includes not only a professional side of this job, but also ethical values as well which include some of the following: 

  •  Utilization of a Neutral standing

  • Accessibility

  • Accepting and understanding other backgrounds of cultures and where information comes from

  • Relationships and connections between records and information

  • Use of Archival language, in a manner that enables users to find information easily in digital platforms or physical documents

  • Appreciation of aged documents, factual information, and digital formats (Websites, emails, social media) 

These direct observations listed above from the Society of American Archivists provide a significant function of their jobs. The type of standard archivists follow include being able to interpret a clear and knowledgeable understanding of where information has come from, what is not known and assertively being able to know how certain information is known (Society of American Archivist XV). As one could think, you would try to answer the who, what when, where, how and why questions, which are important to the concepts of writing overall. The interaction of resources and documents for the public is one of the functions for an archivist to achieve. Archivists are required, professionally, to provide documents for the public to access, in addition to detail and log their findings about documents to the public for the people to view(Society of American Archivist XV). Overall, the major goal of their jobs is to make information accessible for the public to use and go back to when it is needed for the public in people’s research(Society of American Archivist XV-XVi). Moreover, the content of each collection within archives is important for everyone to know. It is better for a collection or work to contain an explanation of the account rather than no content at all. Thus, this is why the job of an archivist is so important to the public and for the greater good (Society of American Archivist XVi). Furthermore, an archivist works by researching, describing, and helping the public acknowledge the archivist greater understanding of their work. These techniques provide a greater purpose for the largest number of people to ensure and provide quality work for viewing of the public.

The most important values an archivist follows moral and ethical principles but also technical assessments according to the Society of American Archivists (Society of American Archivists). Based on the Society of American Archivists, “Describing Archives: A Content Standard”, some of the theories are based on their work that derives from these types of Archival principles and theories. The type of standard archivists follow include being able to interpret a clear and knowledgeable understanding of where information has come from, what is not known, and assertively being able to know how certain information is known (Society of American Archivists XV). As one could think, you would try to answer the who, what when, where, how, and why questions, which are important to the concepts of writing overall. The interaction of resources and documents for the public is one of the functions for an archivist to achieve. Archivists are required, professionally, to provide documents for the public to access, in addition to detail and log their findings of documents to the public for the people to view (Society of American Archivists XV). Overall, the major goal of their jobs is to make information accessible for the public to use and go back to when it is needed for the public in people’s research (Society of American Archivists XV -XVi). Moreover, the content of each collection within archives is important for everyone to know. It is better for a collection of work to contain an explanation of the account rather than no content at all. Thus, this is why the job of an archivist is so important to the public and for the greater good (Society of American Archivists XVi). Furthermore, an archivist works by researching, describing, and helping the public acknowledge the archivist's greater understanding of their work. These techniques provide a greater purpose for the largest number of people to ensure and provide quality work for viewing of the public.

Footnotes: 

  • Society of American Archivist book, “Describing Archives: A Content Standard”(Chicago: Society of American Archivists, 2019), Page vii-xvii.