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Depositing Student Records with University Archives: Appraisal Tips

A guide to help you deposit your student records annually.

Your Records Tell A Story

Think of the various records you create as storytellers of your group's history. To begin telling your story, consider questions like:

  • What sets our group apart from others?
  • What impact has our group had on Northwestern University and our fellow students/members?
  • What has changed for our group over the years?
  • What is my group trying to accomplish this year?

Then consider what records document the answers to those questions. That's your story!

What is Appraisal?

Appraisal (n) process of determining whether records and other materials have permanent (archival) value.

Head of McCormick Library Public Services / Assistant University Archivist

Dana Lamparello's picture
Dana Lamparello
307 Deering Library
Northwestern University Library

Digital Archivist

Kelsey O'Connell's picture
Kelsey O'Connell
109 Deering
Northwestern University Libraries
(847) 467-7697

Concept of Appraisal

Selecting what files to keep and ultimately transfer to the Archives is your decision, and it's an important one because what you select will ultimately tell the story of your Residential College as it exists today. So when appraising your files, consider what is absolutely necessary to tell that story but remember you can't (nor should you) save everything.

Be mindful!

Be especially mindful of

  • Duplicative information (one copy is plenty!).
  • Anything that may jeopardize the privacy of your fellow residents or members.
  • Always consider having photographed or filmed subjects sign a waiver before archiving them. Northwestern University's Global Marketing team has offered templates: Photograph Release Form and Multimedia Release Form.