GETTING STARTED WITH ARCHIVESSPACE

New to ArchivesSpace? We've put together a number of resources to help you get started using ArchivesSpace.

Downloading ArchivesSpace

ArchivesSpace is a browser based system that is free to download and use. You can learn more about installing ArchivesSpace at https://archivesspace.github.io/tech-docs/administration/getting_started.html.

ArchivesSpace Member Resources

While the ArchivesSpace application is free to download and use, ArchivesSpace does have a membership model to support the continuing development of the application and support its community.  There are some member only resources that are useful to both new and experienced ArchivesSpace users.

ArchivesSpace Sandbox

If you have not yet installed ArchivesSpace, or if you would like to test or practice exercises in ArchivesSpace outside of your installed instance, we have a sandbox that is an open play space. You can access it at http://sandbox.archivesspace.org/. Use the username admin and the password admin to access the full functionality of the application. The sandbox is cleared out frequently and should not be used for anything you want to keep or don’t want anyone else to see. 

Demos & Webinars

We maintain a YouTube channel that contains demos of the application.  Our YouTube channel also has webinars and recordings of presentations from our forums that you may find useful.

ArchivesSpace Workshops

We also have a selection of recorded ArchivesSpace workshops covering a variety of topics.  You can review all previously recorded workshops in the workshops section of our YouTube Channel.

ArchivesSpace 4-session Basics Training

Recordings of our virtual 4-session ArchivesSpace Basics training are also available on YouTube.  This training was offered in May 2021 and uses ArchivesSpace v2.8.1. The 4 sessions are as follows:

Session One: Application overview, accession record & single-level resource record creation
Recording: https://youtu.be/Tqi8RIXFIz8

Session Two: Multi-level resource records, container management & rapid data entry methods
Recording: https://youtu.be/z404nsXgxSw

Session Three:  Creating digital object, agent and subject records
Recording: https://youtu.be/AAb3bhG4EPA

Session Four: Location record creation, importing, exporting, data clean-up & customization
Recording: https://youtu.be/S0FuSAhM-A8

Additional Resources

ArchivesSpace assumes user experience or familiarity with archival fundamentals and terminology.  If you are looking for assistance better understanding archival practice, we recommend reviewing the following resources:

Describing Archives: A Content Standard (DACS)

From the Society of American Archivists, DACS is “a set of rules for describing archives, personal papers, and manuscript collections, and can be applied to all material types. It is the U.S. implementation of international standards (i.e., ISAD(G) and ISAAR(CPF)) for the description of archival materials and their creators.”

DACS is the “out of the box” descriptive standard used by ArchivesSpace.  If you are implementing ArchivesSpace and would like to use a different descriptive standard (like ISAD(G)) as your descriptive standard, you can do so by modifying tooltips within ArchivesSpace and through written internal documentation about using ArchivesSpace.  

Dictionary of Archives Terminology 

ArchivesSpace uses common archival terminology within the application. The Dictionary of Archives Terminology is the “foremost reference on the archival lexicon.” The terms derive primarily from the US and Canada. 

Society of American Archivists Continuing Education 

The Society of American Archivists offers both stand alone courses and certificate programs on a variety of topics, including archival fundamentals. 

Additional reading:

The Archives for Black Lives of Philadelphia Anti-Racist Description Resources

The Society of American Archivists Standards Portal

The Society of American Archivists’ Archival Fundamentals Series

The Academy of Certified Archivists’ Handbook for Archival Certification’s suggested reading list