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Archival Studies (Certificate NDP) 
Program Description

The Graduate Certificate in Archival Studies is designed to give students a solid grounding in the core knowledge of the archives and records management profession. The curriculum is structured around the guidelines for graduate programs set by the Society of American Archivists, ensuring that students will be competitive for jobs in a range of institutions possessing archival collections. 

For graduate students in other degree programs, the Certificate will provide an opportunity to learn more about archival practices as they affect the composition and meaning of cultural artifacts and the historical record. In addition, the program will offer advanced continuing education opportunities to practitioners working in libraries and archives, especially on the challenges posed by the emerging of digital recordkeeping.

Student Outcomes
This program is built around the official guidelines of the Society of American Archivists (SAA) for graduate archival studies programs, which call for a minimum of 18 credits as a foundation for archives and records management professionals. Upon graduation, students will have a thorough grounding in the core knowledge of the profession, focusing on the nature of records and the basic archival functions of records appraisal, acquisition, arrangement, description, preservation, reference, access, outreach, and archives administration. Students will also gain essential contextual knowledge of the organizational, legal, and cultural factors shaping archival records as they are created and managed over time.

Department/Academic Unit(s)

School of Information -

The ever-increasing pace of technological innovation requires a more information-savvy workforce that understands not only the how, what, where, when, and why of technology and data but how to apply that knowledge.  At the University of Arizona’s School of Information, we have faculty and students engaged in research and education around all aspects of the information sciences without regard for disciplinary boundaries. We do research in: artificial intelligence; data management and curation; computer vision; computer-mediated communication and learning; natural language processing; social networking; human computer interfaces; dark networks; computational art creation; eCommerce, eGovernment, and eHealth; computational music; library sciences; educational and entertainment technologies; and much more.

We are preparing our graduates to be the doers, thinkers, solvers, and game-changers, not only of the problems and opportunities we see now, but also of the myriad scenarios we can’t yet imagine but are sure to arise during our students’ lifetimes.

College of Social & Behavioral Sciences  
Campuses where offered
Main Campus - Tucson UA Online  
Admissions Contact
Barb Vandervelde
Graduate Program Coordinator
Kathryn Chavez
Director of Graduate Studies
Martin H Fricke
Graduate College Degree Counselor
Kristi R Davenport
Tuition and Fees
Please refer to the UA Bursar's Office Tuition and Fees Calculator for up-to-date information about tuition and fees. 
Please refer to the UA Registrar's's Office Special Course Fees for up-to-date information about special course fees. 

Admissions Information

Admissions Requirements

The School of Information applies the same minimum criteria as it does for the Master of Arts in Library and Information Science.

  • a bachelor's degree from an accredited school/institution
  • a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

All students are required to complete certificate coursework within 4 years.

If you are not a current student in the School of Information, Master of Arts in Library and Information Science program, please carefully read the minimum requirements to apply for certificate admission.

Please complete this online application for admission to the Graduate College with and pay the application fee.  As part of the online application, you are required to submit the following materials.  Please do not email or mail these materials to the School of Information or Graduate College.  These materials are inputted into your online application:

  • Upload unofficial transcripts from ALL higher education institutions attended in ‘Supplemental Questions’ section;
  • Upload a current resumé or curriculum vitae (CV) in the ‘Supplemental Questions’ section;
  • Write a 750-1000 word written statement of introduction and interest in the program in the ‘Supplemental Questions’ section;
  • Provide email addresses and contact information for two (2) recommenders in the ‘Letters of Recommendation’ section.

Please email official e-Transcripts to directly from the institution or mail one (1) official transcript to the following address (do not send to the Graduate College).  Official transcripts from ALL higher education institutions attended are required.

School of Information
The University of Arizona
Harvill 409
1103 E 2nd St.
Tucson, AZ 85721

If you are a current student in the Master of Arts in Library and Information Science program and meet the minimum requirements for this certificate, please submit the following:

  • Complete and submit a GradApp application;
  • Write a 750-1000 word written statement of introduction and interest in the program in the ‘Supplemental Questions’ section;
  • Unofficial transcripts, a current resume, and letters of recommendation are not required for current students.  Write ‘NA’ for these fields, and submit the application.

Both the application and written statement will be reviewed by the Certificate Coordinator for a decision.  Please contact Barb Vandervelde, Manager of Administration at 520-621-3567 or with questions.

Standardized Tests

No standarized tests required.

Financial Aid

Financial Aid Opportunities are available for students completing a certificate program through UAOnline.  Please contact the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid (OFSA) for more information.

There are funding opportunities available through the School of Information, if completing both a Master of Arts in Library and Information Science and a certificate program.  Please see the School of Information Financial Aid webpage for information and deadlines to apply:

Admissions Deadlines


Admission Deadlines:

Fall Semester: February 15

Spring Semester: October 15

Summer Semester: March 15


International Admission Deadlines:

Fall Semester: February 15

Spring Semester: September 1

Summer Semester: March 1

International Conditional Admission
International applicants will not be considered for conditional admission by this program.
Other Information
The GRE Institution Code for The University of Arizona is 4832

Completion Requirements

Degree Requirements

Certificate Requirements
The certificate requires a minimum of 12 to 15 credit hours in total (depending on admissions qualifications), including 9-12 units from required courses and 3 units from an elective course. Students completing the certificate only are advised to present a minimum of 18 units of courses consisting of core archival knowledge to meet Society of American Archivist recommendations for Graduate Programs in Archival Studies.  

Required Courses [12 credits]:
LIS 504:  Foundations of Library and Information Services (3 units)
LIS 540:  Introduction to Archives (3 units)
LIS 640:  Advanced Archives (3 units)
LIS 671:  Introduction to Digital Collections (3 units)

Elective Courses [3 credits]:
LIS 530:  Cataloging and Metadata Management (3 units)
LIS 541:  Preservation (3 units)(available to main campus students only)
LIS 557:  Documenting Diverse Cultures and Communities (3 units)
LIS 570:  Database Management and Development (3 units)
LIS 584:  Introduction to Copyright (3 units)
LIS 641: Community-focused Archives and Museums (3 units)
LIS 672:  Introduction to Applied Technology (3 units)
LIS 673:  Managing the Digital Information Environment (3 units)
LIS 674:  Preserving Digital Collections (3 units)
LIS 675:  Advanced Digital Collections (3 units)
LIS 693:  Internship (3 units)
LIS 699:  Independent Study (3 units)

Minor Requirements

No minor requirements for this program.

Student Handbook  
Persistent link:
Last revised 28 Aug 2019