Contact Us

For more information about how to contact the OSU Archives, please visit our Location, Hours, & Staff Information page.

Using Materials

The holdings of the University Archives are open to faculty, staff, students, and the public for research. Reference assistance is provided by Archives staff to help determine the materials appropriate for specific research projects.

Reference Services

To learn more about our how to do research in an archive, visit our Reference Services web page.

Using Archival Reources in the Classroom

The OSU Archives encourages the use of University Archives' collections in graduate and undergraduate classes. Instructors interested in using the Archives in their classes should contact us at (541) 737-2165,, or the Ask An Archivist form. Please allow several weeks for us to make arrangements.

Research orientation sessions

The staff is pleased to work with instructors to have their classes use Archives' materials in their course work. This can be an information consultation session or a formal workshop.

For an example of an undergraduate student workshop, see Ethnic Studies 351: Ethnic Minorities in Oregon, Using Archives: Cultures & Customs in Historical Records, June 16, 2008.

For an example of a faculty/graduate student workshop, see How to Create Assignments with Primary Sources: Setting Students up for Success, Center for Teaching and Learning Workshop, Feb 27, 2008.

For an example of a department presentation, see the OSU Archives Presents: Calling all Extension Offices! workshop given to the Extension Offices on April 15, 2008.

Orientation sessions introduce students to the University Archives procedures and give an overview of our resources. For more specialized class sessions we work closely with faculty and instructors to identify and assemble materials for hands-on examination in a classroom setting.

Orientation sessions provide general introductory information and a survey of our holdings including a discussion of major collections. Registration, proper handling of materials, research techniques, intellectual property principles, duplication fees, and feasible time lines are highlighted. Basic search strategies and tools, and useful tips to help students find materials and make the most of our rich resources are also included. Sessions can be tailored to include specific topics and other information as needed. Archivists can also give informational seminars intended for a group of graduate teaching assistants or departmental faculty and staff who wish to incorporate primary source materials into their course work. These can be arranged to incorporate specific topics desired by the group.

Classroom instruction

The University Archives welcomes faculty and staff to contact us about incorporating our expertise and resources into their instruction plan. We work with instructors to design assignments and create active learning exercises that encourage the research use of primary materials. Customized presentations on specific topics and based on original primary sources introduce undergraduate and graduate students to original research materials. A general orientation to finding and using resources is included.

Primary source documents can inspire as well as teach students to identify, define and solve problems by locating and critically evaluating information. Students learn to verify sources, track down connections, and find evidence from content and physical clues. Integrating research methodology and archival resources into assignments enhances student learning and fulfills student outcomes. Students learn to communicate effectively and understand the role of creativity, innovation, and discovery across disciplines. We have rich documentary sources, many of which have not been researched. Your students could make important discoveries!

We are happy to partner with our research librarian colleagues to hold joint sessions to introduce students to primary and secondary sources.

Requesting a session

Staff can give a presentation in your classroom, or classes can be held on-site in the University Archives. Communicating with the instructors enables the staff to prepare materials ahead of time, understand the process behind the assignments and enhance the research work of the students. Advance arrangements and consultations are required for class visits and major classroom research assignments.

Contact us as far in advance as is feasible to schedule a class session. Please provide your contact information, the proposed date and time of your visit, number of students, and background about your class.

Learning more about our collections

In addition to orientation sessions, workshops, and classroom instruction, we are also available to provide specialized tours, classes, and orientations for K-12 students and other interested groups.


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