Group of students and instructor examining documents and photographs laid flat on a round table.

Guide: Incorporating Special Collections and Archives into Your Teaching (2022)

The goal of archival instruction sessions taught by Special Collections faculty is to give students the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to effectively and efficiently find, interpret, and use archives, manuscripts, and other types of unique primary sources. In addition to these archival literacy competencies, registration, proper handling of materials, research techniques, search strategies, intellectual property principles, and reproduction policies are highlighted.

Our sessions are tailored to the needs of particular classes or special interest groups and serve as an introduction to highlights from the holdings of both the College of Charleston and the South Carolina Historical Society related to a course topic. Special Collections archivists can also give informational seminars intended for departmental faculty and staff who wish to incorporate primary source materials into their course work.

After an archives instruction session, students will be able to:

  • Describe the procedures for using Special Collections and archives in order to properly access and handle primary source material in the holdings of both the College of Charleston and the South Carolina Historical Society
  • Apply evaluative criteria in order to identify if source material is a primary, secondary, or tertiary information
  • Search archival holdings in the online catalog and finding aids in order to retrieve holdings information necessary for completing call slips

If you would like to arrange for a visit to the reading room or instruction session, please complete our Instruction Request Form and Mary Jo Fairchild, our Research and Instruction Coordinator, will reach out to help you plan!  Please reach out as early as possible to arrange for instruction!

Please note:

  • All requests for instruction *must* be submitted at least 2 weeks before the date of the projected visit. The earlier a request is received, the more likely it is that we will be able to accommodate your date preferences. 
  • Instructors or a designated substitute must be present for the duration of the session.