Digital Preservation Site Visits

Digital Preservation staff participate in site visits when contacted by Collection Management. This page focuses on procedures for Digital Preservation staff while on site visits. Curators and Archives Unit staff can refer to Acquiring Born-Digital Material for site visit procedures. Site Visits gives a general overview of the role of Digital Preservation staff in site visits.


The kind of equipment used on site visits will depend on your communication with donors, curators, and Archives Unit staff. Early site visits with living donors/creators may only involve interviews and photographs. Transferring material during a site visit will require the most equipment. See Using Lab Equipment for more detailed information on where to find equipment in the lab.

Talking to Donors

Coordinate with curators and Archives Unit staff to conduct the donor survey.

  • A donor may fill out an Electronic Records Survey before your visit. In this case, review the Google form responses and compile any follow up questions to ask the donor.
  • When Digital Preservation staff are responsible for conducting the Donor Survey ask the questions in the linked document. Feel free to ask follow up questions until the responses are clear.

Creating Reports

The number and kind of reports you create will depend on your involvement in site visits. Check in with curators and Archives Unit staff to confirm what documents you are responsible for.

  • Digital Preservation staff are always responsible for completing the Technical and Feasibility Memo.
    • This report can be created from information provided by curators and Archives Unit staff when Digital Preservation staff do not participate in site visits.
    • Feasibility should include:
      • Availability of drives to view media.
      • Software requirements to view files.
      • Passwords or encryption.
      • Estimates of transfer time and size.
  • When Digital Preservation staff conduct the donor survey or ask follow up questions the responses should be recorded in a document.
  • Digital Preservation staff might be asked to contribute to a General Site Visit Report. View the linked document for instructions.
  • When a transfer has been scheduled start a Digital Material Transfer form. Update the form once the transfer is complete.

Storing Reports

Documentation prior to acquisition should be saved in the Collection Development DRAFT folder.