LIBR 284-01
LIBR 284-10
Seminar in Archives and Records Management
Topic: Photographic Preservation
Summer 2013 Greensheet

Gawain Weaver
Contact information: E-mail is the best way to reach me, (415) 717-0264
Office location: San Anselmo, CA
Office Hours: 10am-6pm Pacific Daylight Time

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This course will be available on D2L on Thursday, May 30. You will be enrolled into the site automatically. I will send more information about course access as we approach this date through MySJSU. Class begins June 3, 2013.

Course Description

“Preservation of Photographs” offers a broad introduction to the history, technology, identification, and care of photographic materials from 1839 to the present day. Photographic and photomechanical processes will be examined and discussed in detail. A sample set of 18 historic photographs and a handheld microscope give the student experience in identification of photographic processes.

Topics on the care and preservation of photographs include understanding photographic deterioration, selection of appropriate enclosures, environmental monitoring, the effects of temperature and relative humidity on collections, the importance of cold storage for certain photographic materials, and digitization issues for photographic images within a preservation environment.

Course Requirements

This course will be conducted using the D2L course management system. Lectures are posted weekly with relevant discussion forum questions to encourage discussion. Assignments and or quizzes for each week are included in each Lesson. Students are required to:

  • Complete all readings
  • View/listen to weekly lectures
  • Respond weekly to discussion items
  • Complete assignments (scavenger hunts) as posted on D2L
  • Complete quizzes as posted on D2L
  • Submit the 5-page research paper electronically by midnight on August 9th


The online discussions, quizzes, and scavenger hunts are distributed throughout the ten weeks of the course

  • Week 1-8: assignments supports: SLO #1
  • Week 9: assignment supports: SLO #4
  • Research Paper: assigment supports: SLO #1  and or SLO #4
  • Participation in Online Discussions
    A significant portion of the grade in this course is based on participation in online discussions. Such participation should demonstrate your completion and thoughtful analysis of the weekly readings and lectures through original postings and replies to other students' postings. As stated in the Discussion Forum Grading Rubric, 1 original post and 1 reply to a another student’s post is required each week. Each post and each reply is scored on a scale of 1-25. The average of these is your point score for the discussion for that week. If you fail to make either posting, you will receive a 0 for that posting.
  • Research Paper
    The text of this formal research paper should be no less than 2000 words not including citations or bibliography. The topic must be approved by the instructor, and should be on a photograph preservation topic (not photohistory or aesthetics). A one paragraph description of the topic is due by Friday, July 5th (earlier is fine). The formal research paper will be graded on the quality and depth of your research, and your critical analysis of the literature. Reference list should include at least 10 citations, and a bibliography is not necessary, but may be included if you wish to list sources not cited but used in your background research.  Formatting and references should adhere to the rules of the APA Publication Manual. The research paper is due by midnight on August 9th.
  • Quizzes
    Quizzes are administered through D2L and do not require production of a separate document. There are 7 quizzes throughout the course, and they are worth 20 points each. They can be taken only once. The questions are formulated from the course lectures and readings. The questions can be tricky and require some thought and research to answer correctly.
  • Scavenger Hunts
    Four scavenger hunts (15 points each) will be assigned during the course. Two of them will involve research on a photographic process (short bibliography, weblinks, early examples of the process in a museum, archive, or library imagebase or website), and two of them will involve using to find and describe specific views of a photograph

Course Calendar
Important Dates to Remember:

June 3 Class Begins
July 5 Research Paper Topic Due
August 9 Research Paper Due, Class End

The deadline for weekly quizzes and other weekly assignments is midnight on Sunday at the end of each class week, unless specified otherwise in D2L.

All dates subject to change with fair notice

Course Grading
Everyone begins the class with a grade of “B” the standard grade for graduate work. Students who complete all assignments on time and as assigned, will receive a B provided the quality of work meets the minimum requirements commensurate with graduate work. Above standard work is defined as clearly displays one or more of the following criteria:

  • Originality in the approach to the assignment
  • Greater depth of analysis above and beyond the basic assignment.
  • Substantive comments to the discussion board that indicate a depth of understanding beyond simple summary of readings and questions.
  • Superior organizational, written, or communication skills in the presentation of materials.
  • Use of The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, Sixth edition, as the official style manual for formats, citations, and bibliography. Please see for a list of sources providing assistance.

Penalties are assessed in the following situations:

  • Errors in spelling, grammar and syntax will be subject to penalty based upon rate of errors and not using APA format.
  • Disorganized format, lack of structure and failing to follow the full assignment will be subject to penalty.

Assignments will contribute to your final grade as follows:

Participation in Online Discussions 200 points
Formal Research Paper 200 points
7 Online Quizzes (20 points each) 140 points
4 Scavenger Hunts (15 points each) 60 points




The total number of points for this class is 600. See grading scale below to translate into a letter grade.

Late Assignments
Late assignments will not be accepted without prior notification and approval of instructor, and will be subject to a reduction of points earned towards the assignment. All weekly assignments (quizzes, scavenger hunts, online discussion posts, etc) are due by midnight Sunday at the end of each class week).

Extra Credit
Extra credit will be given for the creation of Quick ID Sheets (2 Quick ID Sheets maximum, up to 10 points for each one, judged for completeness and accuracy), for any photographic or photomechanical process not included in the course. A template and instructions are provided in D2L.

Required Materials:

Recommended Texts:

  • Gascoigne, B., (2004). How to Identify Prints. 2nd edition. New York: Thames and Co. (Suggested)
  • Lavédrine, B., J.-P. Gandolfo, et al. (2003). A guide to the preventive conservation of photograph collections. Los Angeles: Getty Conservation Institute. (Suggested)
  • Ritzenthaler, M. L., D. Vogt-O'Connor, et al. (2006). Photographs : archival care and management. Chicago: Society of American Archivists. (Suggested)

Course Workload Expectations

Success in this course is based on the expectation that students will spend, for each unit of credit, a minimum of forty-five hours over the length of the course (normally 3 hours per unit per week with 1 of the hours used for lecture) for instruction or preparation/studying or course related activities including but not limited to internships, labs, clinical practica. Other course structures will have equivalent workload expectations as described in the syllabus.

Instructional time may include but is not limited to:
Working on posted modules or lessons prepared by the instructor; discussion forum interactions with the instructor and/or other students; making presentations and getting feedback from the instructor; attending office hours or other synchronous sessions with the instructor.

Student time outside of class:
In any seven-day period, a student is expected to be academically engaged through submitting an academic assignment; taking an exam or an interactive tutorial, or computer-assisted instruction; building websites, blogs, databases, social media presentations; attending a study group;contributing to an academic online discussion; writing papers; reading articles; conducting research; engaging in small group work.

Course Prerequisites

LIBR 200, LIBR 202, LIBR 204, Other prerequisites may be added depending on content

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Identify and explain preservation concerns for many common types of photographic (print and negative) processes.
  2. Apply archival rules of appraisal, arrangement, and description to complex visual archives.
  3. Identify the complex issues relating to photograph digitization and born digital images, including management, access, metadata, and long-term preservation.
  4. Implement cold storage solutions for photographic materials

Core Competencies (Program Learning Outcomes)

LIBR 284 supports the following core competencies:

  1. F Use the basic concepts and principles related to the selection, evaluation, organization, and preservation of physical and digital items and collections.


Required Textbooks:

  • Reilly, J. M. (2009). Care and Identification of 19th Century Photographic Prints. Rochester Institute of Technology. Available through the publisher Image Permanence Institute: 0879853654. arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

Grading Scale

The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:

97 to 100 A
94 to 96 A minus
91 to 93 B plus
88 to 90 B
85 to 87 B minus
82 to 84 C plus
79 to 81 C
76 to 78 C minus
73 to 75 D plus
70 to 72 D
67 to 69 D minus
Below 67 F


In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:

  • C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
  • B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work;
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation.  You must repeat the class the following semester. If -on the second attempt- you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
  • A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.

Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

General Expectations, Rights and Responsibilities of the Student

As members of the academic community, students accept both the rights and responsibilities incumbent upon all members of the institution. Students are encouraged to familiarize themselves with SJSU's policies and practices pertaining to the procedures to follow if and when questions or concerns about a class arises. See University Policy S90-5 at More detailed information on a variety of related topics is available in the SJSU catalog at In general, it is recommended that students begin by seeking clarification or discussing concerns with their instructor. If such conversation is not possible, or if it does not serve to address the issue, it is recommended that the student contact the Department Chair as a next step.

Dropping and Adding

Students are responsible for understanding the policies and procedures about add/drop, grade forgiveness, etc. Refer to the current semester's Catalog Policies section at Add/drop deadlines can be found on the current academic year calendars document on the Academic Calendars webpage at The Late Drop Policy is available at Students should be aware of the current deadlines and penalties for dropping classes.

Information about the latest changes and news is available at the Advising Hub at

Consent for Recording of Class and Public Sharing of Instructor Material

University Policy S12-7,, requires students to obtain instructor's permission to record the course and the following items to be included in the syllabus:

  • "Common courtesy and professional behavior dictate that you notify someone when you are recording him/her. You must obtain the instructor's permission to make audio or video recordings in this class. Such permission allows the recordings to be used for your private, study purposes only. The recordings are the intellectual property of the instructor; you have not been given any rights to reproduce or distribute the material."
    • It is suggested that the syllabus include the instructor's process for granting permission, whether in writing or orally and whether for the whole semester or on a class by class basis.
    • In classes where active participation of students or guests may be on the recording, permission of those students or guests should be obtained as well.
  • "Course material developed by the instructor is the intellectual property of the instructor and cannot be shared publicly without his/her approval. You may not publicly share or upload instructor generated material for this course such as exam questions, lecture notes, or homework solutions without instructor consent."

Academic integrity

Your commitment, as a student, to learning is evidenced by your enrollment at San Jose State University. The University Academic Integrity Policy F15-7 at requires you to be honest in all your academic course work. Faculty members are required to report all infractions to the office of Student Conduct and Ethical Development. The Student Conduct and Ethical Development website is available at

Campus Policy in Compliance with the American Disabilities Act

If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, or if you need to make special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please make an appointment with me as soon as possible, or see me during office hours. Presidential Directive 97-03 at requires that students with disabilities requesting accommodations must register with the Accessible Education Center (AEC) at to establish a record of their disability.

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