Course:2: Acquiring Your Collections
Lesson:Lesson 3: Appraisal--Deciding What Records to Acquire
Topic:Lesson Three Summary

 

Lesson Three Summary

Key points to remember include the following:

To appraise the appropriateness of a potential acquisition to your organization, use the "when, why, what, who, how" questions.

You might want to make an exception to your collection policy because of political considerations, because of who the donor is, or because a precedent might be set by accepting them.

The final, fundamental questions to answer are

  • Are the records historically valuable?
    .
  • Are the records appropriate for your repository?

An appraisal scorecard can help you make your decision and document that decision for future members of your organization

What Happens After Appraisal?

If your appraisal decision is to accept the records, then you will proceed with a formal transfer of the records and move them into your collections. We’ll talk about that in the next lesson.

If your appraisal decision is to reject the records, you should:

  • Thank the potential donor
    .
  • Explain your decision in brief, general terms
    .
  • If appropriate, refer the donor to another historical records program where the records might be a better fit.



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