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HE & Archives: Forging a new relationship in Essex Sarah Girling Cultural Access, Learning and Participation Officer.

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Presentation on theme: "HE & Archives: Forging a new relationship in Essex Sarah Girling Cultural Access, Learning and Participation Officer."— Presentation transcript:

1 HE & Archives: Forging a new relationship in Essex Sarah Girling Cultural Access, Learning and Participation Officer

2 University of Essex student visits Essex Record Office Aims The team What we delivered Who took part Evaluation What next?

3 Essex Record Office Based in Chelmsfor d Founded in 1938

4 Essex Record Office 8 miles of archival shelving Home to the ESVA

5 Aims Target young people – break down barriers

6 Ages of visitors to ERO (PSQG Survey 2012)

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9 Aims Target young people – break down barriers Why University of Essex? Give the students ideas for research topics – foster repeat visits Increase use of Searchroom

10 Chart showing declining physical visits

11 Aims Target young people – break down barriers Why University of Essex? Give the students ideas for research topics – foster repeat visits Increase use of Searchroom Introduce students to Seax, original documents and Searchroom technology

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13 Aims Target young people – break down barriers Why University of Essex? Give the students ideas for research topics – foster repeat visits Increase use of Searchroom Introduce students to Seax, original documents and Searchroom technology Critical awareness when using sources

14 The Team Neil Wiffen – PST Manager Sarah Girling – Heritage Education Officer Hannah Salisbury – Audience Development Officer Ruth Costello – Archivist Tony King – Senior Conservator Martin Astell – Sound & Video Archivist Archive Assistants Grahame Harris, Edd Harris, Gloria Harris and Sarah Ensor

15 What we delivered Behind-the-scenes tour –Searchroom –Repositories –Conservation Studio –ERO ‘Treasures’

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20 What we delivered Behind-the-scenes tour Case studies Introduction to original documents

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22 What we delivered Behind-the-scenes tour Case studies Introduction to original documents Introduction to Essex Sound and Video Archive Research task – in the Searchroom, using primary and secondary sources

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24 What we delivered Behind-the-scenes tour Case studies Introduction to original documents Introduction to Essex Sound and Video Archive Research task – in the Searchroom, using primary and secondary sources Discussion

25 Who took part? University of Essex made the visits a compulsory part of first year study, with students writing a reflective report on their visit 77 first year History undergraduates took part

26 Evaluation Students’ opinions were asked at the beginning and the end of each day

27 Would you use the ERO for your research?

28 Students’ perceptions Beginning of the day: Dusty, old, strict, complex, lonely, difficult to understand, difficult to access, outdated, didn’t know what the ERO was, used by ‘important historians’ End of the day: More interesting, easier to use and more useful than expected; more variety than expected; can be used for more than strictly local history

29 What did the students enjoy? Research task Seeing ERO ‘Treasures’ Tour Case studies Conservation Learning about the range of sources available

30 What did the students think? [I] enjoyed realising how many sources [are] available for use and what knowledge they can provide The activity was good as it gave an experience of what you would do for your dissertation etc. [I enjoyed] viewing primary sources rather than having secondary sources Archives and old records are much more accessible than I thought

31 What did the tutors think? Almost all the students gave positive comments in their reflective reports. Many of them said that they were inspired by the presentations on sources and would use the ERO in future research projects. Several of them also expressed interest in developing knowledge and experience of conservation and archive work. Dr. Amanda Flather, First Year Director, Department of History, University of Essex

32 Challenges Mobile phones Engaging students in discussion Group dynamics Space/potential disruption

33 What next? We will repeat the visits in 2014 We will work with second year students to help them choose dissertation topics Building long-term relationship with the University of Essex

34 Contact Sarah Girling archive


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