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OU Administrative Policies
and Procedures

371 Wilson Blvd., Suite 4000
Rochester , MI 48309-4482
(location map)

OU Administrative Policies
and Procedures

371 Wilson Blvd., Suite 4000
Rochester , MI 48309-4482
(location map)

480 University Archives


RATIONALE: The mission of the University Archives (Archives) is to preserve the institutional history of Oakland University (University).

POLICY: The Archives collects, organizes, preserves and makes accessible the significant Records that chronicle the history of the University. The Archives thus becomes the institutional memory of the University, preserving the contributions of many individuals to its growth and development and providing historic information for research and reference. The Archives’ holdings are non-circulating and are open by appointment to the public.

SCOPE AND APPLICABILITY: The Archives is the repository for official and quasi-official Records created by the University’s administration, academic departments, faculty, students and campus organizations. The Records exist in a variety of diverse Formats and include electronic Records.

In order to promote the orderly flow of institutional Records from the source of origin to the Archives, several principles including those of ownership, transference, confidentiality and Formatting must be established: 

  1. All Records created within the University for an official purpose are the property of the University. 
  2. Excepting confidential Records, official Records of the University should be periodically transferred from the originating office to the Archives. 
  3. With the Provost’s approval and consistent with applicable law, the Dean of the Library (or his/her designee) shall determine which of the Records collected by Archives warrant preservation in the archived collection, and shall determine how the archived collection is to be administered as well as when and how archived Records may be accessed. 
  4. Certain Records, for reasons of confidentiality, among others, may be closed from public view or have reasonable restrictions placed on their use, unless otherwise required by law. 
  5. Records may be reformatted before they are added to the archived collection. In such event, the librarian in charge of Archives (Archivist) may choose to contact the office of origin to determine if the Records should be returned or destroyed, but this is not required. 
  6. Records may be deaccessioned (removed) from Archives if the Archivist determines that they are no longer of enduring value, are duplicative of other Records in the Archives, or are available in another Format. The Archivist may choose to contact the office of origin to determine if the deaccessioned Records should be returned or destroyed, but this is not required. 
  7. Other units may establish individual Archives, with procedures and schedules coordinated with the Archivist to ensure that the objectives of the University's Record management program are met. Unit Archives shall observe archival standards and University policies regarding the condition of the Records and the storage facility, as well as the maintenance and accessibility of the collection. No Records in unit Archives shall be destroyed without the approval of the Archivist.


Records: Items held in the Archives, which include but are not limited to: official reports, minutes and correspondence, budget and audited financial statements, publications, and ephemeral materials.

Formats: The permanent form of archived Records, which include but are not limited to: print documents, photographs, negatives, slides, audio and visual materials, maps, prints, microfilm, objects, and electronic files.


Instructions for Transferring Permanent Records to OU Archives

The Archives works to retain and preserve University Records that have permanent historical value. The Archives does not store Records that are scheduled for destruction.

Step 1: Identify Records

Step 2: Prepare Boxes or Folders

Use standard sized storage boxes (12”x15”x10”) with lids and handles.

When possible, remove files from hanging folders before boxing and place in separate folders corresponding to the hanging folders.

Keep files in their original order when placing them in boxes. Finding files in original order is very important to researchers.

Do not overfill boxes. Overstuffed boxes pose a safety hazard and can damage the Records.

When possible, loose pamphlets and other items should be placed in folders before being put in boxes.

Package odd-sized items in the manner best suited to protect them during transportation.

Step 3: Describe Box Contents

Create an inventory list for each box. Indicate the department name, box number, date range of materials, and all folder titles.

Step 4: Paperwork

Fill out a University Archives Transmittal/Inventory Form (Transmittal Form, Appendix A). Use only one Transmittal Form for each shipment of Records.

Send the Transmittal Form AND a copy of the box/folder list to the Archives, Attention: Archives.

Keep a copy of the Transmittal Form and box/folder inventory list for your Records.

The Archives will confirm the receipt of the transmittal request via e-mail or phone, and will mail a memo that describes the delivery process.

Write the box number on each box label as it relates to the box/folder list. Use a thick black marker for visibility.

Step 5: Schedule Delivery to Archives
When boxes are labeled and ready for transfer, contact University Mail Services to arrange for pick-up.

Contact the Archives staff with any questions.


OU AP&P #481 Records Retention and Disposal


Appendix A: University Archives Transmittal / Inventory Form