LIBR 259-10
Preservation Management
Spring 2014 Greensheet

Emily Holmes
Other contact information:
If you prefer to speak by telephone, you may reach me at 212-854-1336, M-F 8am-4:30 pm ET
Office Hours: by appointment

Greensheet Links
D2L Login and Tutorials
iSchool eBookstore

D2L Information: This course will be available beginning Jan 20, 2014. You will be enrolled into the site automatically. The course will run on a Thurs-Wed schedule, beginning officially on January 23.

Course Description

An introduction to the principles and practices of library and archives preservation, including examination of the composition of paper, book, and non-book materials; agents that contribute to deterioration; current methods for preventing and remediating deterioration, including environmental controls, disaster planning and recovery, binding, digitization and other reformatting technologies, collection maintenance and rehousing;  the preservation and curation of digital objects, and the management of preservation efforts, including preservation assessment and decision-making; and the standards and professional ethics that support them.

Topics will include:

  • Introduction to library preservation and its recent history
  • Paper and books
  • Audiovisual materials
  • Environment and its effects on library materials
  • Care, handling and security
  • Disaster planning and response
  • Reformatting
  • Digital preservation and digital curation
  • Metadata supporting long term digital preservation
  • Digital repositories
  • Preservation management and surveys
  • Selection for preservation

Each weekly module will include a brief introductory video, a lecture with slides that will last approximately 45 minutes to an hour, and a required discussion section with suggested discussion topics and sometimes an additional short reading or watching assignment for in depth discussion.

Course Requirements

There will be three short written assignments and a final project as well as required weekly discussions. The aim of the short written assignments is two-fold: 1. to learn more about the practical applications of the theory we will be discussing in class, and 2. to practice writing professional reports as will be expected of you in future professional positions. Thus, reports will be graded both on your preservation judgement, but also the organization, succinctness and professionalism of your written work. Details about each assignment available on the D2L course site.

  • Assignment One: You will read and analyze a sample environmental report from an academic library (provided on D2L); in the role of preservation librarian or curator, write a concise professional report, stating the problems you see with the environment, along with a list of possible solutions to these problems (SLO 2, SLO 3, SLO 6)
  • Assignment Two: You will be randomly assigned a type of media to research (i.e., daguerrotype, wax cylinder, LP, etc.) and will provide a general description of it, as well as details about what makes it vulnerable and the types of preservation interventions you would suggest to support your media types' long term preservation (SLO 2, SLO 3, SLO 7)
  • Assignment Three: You will research a long term digital repository, briefly describe it and give information about the organization it serves. Map the functions of this repository to the main roles and functional entities of the OAIS conceptual framework (a list of these will be provided on D2L) (SLO 4, SLO 7)

Assignments that are turned in late will lose one half grade for each week that paper is late. Assignments are due by 11:59 pm PT of the due date and must be submitted via the D2L Dropbox

Each short paper is worth 15% of grade

Final Projects: You may choose one of two possible projects:

Option One: Complete a  partial Preservation Assessment on a Library or Archive (SLO 2, SLO 3, SLO 6, SLO 7)

  1. Choose a library to conduct a preservation assessment. If you are currently working in a library, I would recommend that you choose that one, since you have access to more information about it. If not, you may choose another library (you are allowed to estimate on statistics, etc. if necessary for this exercise, but should try to answer most the questions as accurately as possible)
  2. Identify the library's name, the type of library it is (public, academic, etc), whom it serves, and the type of collections it houses. If it has a preservation department, describe it briefly.
  3. Go to:
  4. Fill out the "General Building Worksheet", the "Worksheet for Mixed Collections", and another specific collection worksheet of your choice (pdf files).
  5. On a separate sheet make recommendations for improvements or changes based upon your findings, or, if you find that no changes are necessary, support that with your findings.

You will also keep a journal of the experience and will report on the final project message board on your progress throughout the semester.

Option Two: Create a Digital Preservation Policy for a Library, Archive or Business (SLO 2, SLO 4, SLO 5, SLO 7)

  1. For this assignment, you will establish a relationship with a local institution (library, archive, public radio/tv affiliate, business, etc) that is building its digital collections and that has not yet produced a digital preservation policy.
  2. Design and implement a needs-assessment interview to gather pertinent information about the institution and its collections
  3. Produce a digital preservation policy in conjunction with the institution’s staff.
  4. Produce a list of short and long term goals for your institution regarding implementing their digital preservation policy and plan.

You will also keep a journal of the experience and will report on the final project message board on your progress throughout the semester.

30% of grade

Weekly class discussions: Since development of connections is especially challenging with online courses, individual participation is all the more important. Therefore, it is mandatory that students participate in each weekly discussion board. This allows a further exploration of topics in preservation and also assures that we are meeting all student learning objectives. Each student should contribute between 100-200 words per week. Interaction with your peers in the group (i.e., responding to posted messages) is especially encouraged.  25% of grade

Course Readings
No up to date and comprehensive textbook on preservation is currently in print. Many of our basic readings will come from the Northeast Document Conservation Center’s online course, Preservation 101, at

Other online sources will be assigned and for items where there is no online source, assigned readings will be available on reserve through the King library.

Course Calendar
To be posted on D2L January 20, 2014

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

Student Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Describe the evolution of preservation theory and practice.
  2. Identify the decision-making process behind selection for preservation.
  3. Summarize the causes of deterioration of various types of information objects.
  4. Identify key concepts and standards in digital preservation, including the OAIS model and repository development.
  5. Define the principles of a workable preservation policy in libraries, archives, and corporate DAM settings.
  6. Identify and apply disaster planning, prevention, response, and recovery strategies.
  7. Locate and evaluate tools, research, and other resources on preservation.

Core Competencies (Program Learning Outcomes)

LIBR 259 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.
  2. N Evaluate programs and services based on measurable criteria.


No Textbooks For This Course.

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.

icon showing link leads to the PDF file viewer known as Acrobat Reader Download Adobe Acrobat Reader to access PDF files.

More accessibility resources.