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Electronic Records Program 1994-1995 Report

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Appendix 4

Electronic records sent to the State Archives must be reviewed through a formal accession process so that access and retrievability are ensured. The following draft accession guidelines are designed to handle accessions for simple type of electronic records (e.g. database, spreadsheet, or document files).

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Electronic Records Accession Guidelines

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Physical Validation

This involves checking the formats and structures of files to validate that it matches documentation.

Text files
Number of files
Size (MBytes)
File Relationships (ie. merge files)
Database, spreadsheets and similar files
Number of files received
Number of files match documentation
Field types match documentation (yes or no)
Number of logical records match documentation (yes or no)

Informational Validation

This involves determining if the information within the files matches the records schedule and documentation. This is particularly important for databases. Some of the validation process may require special programming to examine databases for a range of values. This will be decided at accessioning.

Values in a database field are within an acceptable range (if no, attach sheet indicating which fields in the table have values outside of the range)
Verify through sampling fields which do not have a definable range of values

Reappraisal

If it is found that the electronic records do not match the documentation or records schedule then the Archives will take the following steps:

  • Contact the agency to retrieve an accurate data set,
  • Reappraise the value of the series based on its degree of inaccuracy and traditional archival values,
  • If the reappraisal indicates destruction, notify the agency of the pending destruction,
  • Do not destroy any series until an attempt has been made to receive an accurate data set.

Create or modify RLIN record as necessary

Enter accession in acession log and electronic records maintenance log

Copy files to designated storage location

Create preliminary register

  • Title page
    • Heading
    • Agency, Division, Subdivision name
    • Series title
    • Accession number
  • Access restrictions
  • Accessioning Archivist
  • Abstract
    • General information about origin and functions of series
    • Informational content
    • Information on relationship of series to other series or internal file relationships
  • Technical information
    • attach documentation received from agency

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