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Research Guides

Discover Archives

SearchTips for Discover Archives - finding archival records (primary sources) at U of T

Why introduce students to archives and primary sources?

The archives is a learning laboratory. Students are generally thrilled to interact with tangible pieces of history, while getting hands-on experience doing research.  Research with primary documents is no longer limited to graduate students, and it’s not just for history courses. Our campus archives have hosted classes in engineering, physics, museum studies, politics, medicine, architecture, anthropology, cinema studies, literature and many more subjects where an archival component can vastly enrich the student experience.

What archivists can do for you

We can help you incorporate archives and primary sources into your courses by:
●     Helping you design effective assignments
●     Providing advice on appropriate readings
●     Finding source material to fit the course/assignment topic
●     Visiting your class to lecture on archives and archival research methods
●     Hosting your class in the archives, to view select material
●     Providing ongoing research support for you and your students
●     Building archival learning in your courses
●     Creating archival assignments

Contact one of the archives at U of T.

Further reading on teaching with archives

Roff, Sandra (2007). “Archives, Documents, and Hidden History: A Course to Teach Undergraduates the Thrill of Historical Discovery Real and Virtual” The History Teacher, Vol. 40, No. 4 (Aug., 2007), pp. 551-558:
Matyn, Marian (2000). “Getting Undergraduates to Seek Primary Sources in Archives” The History Teacher, Vol. 33, No. 3 (May 2000), pp. 349-355.
Weiner, Sharon A., Sammie Morris, & Lawrence J. Mykytiuk (2015) Archival Literacy Competencies for Undergraduate History Majors. The American Archivist: Spring/Summer 2015, Vol. 78, No. 1, pp. 154-180.