Archives Collection Policy

The mission of the University Archives is to document the functioning of the Tulane University of Louisiana throughout its existence by selecting, preserving, arranging, describing, and providing appropriate access to the university’s records of permanent historical, legal, fiscal, or administrative value.

The following types of records are maintained in the University Archives:

  • Organization documents (e.g., charters, constitutions, by-laws), policy statements, and reports (along with their supporting documents), minutes, substantive memoranda, correspondence, and subject files for Tulane University's:
    • Board of Administrators {closed to the public}
    • President’s office
    • academic and administrative offices, units, and committees
  • Reports of:
    • self-studies and accreditation visits
    • annual budgets and audits
    • academic and administrative offices and units
  • Records of:
    • departmental operation, e.g., minutes, reports, syllabi, faculty vitae, correspondence
    • retired, resigned, terminated, or deceased personnel employed by Tulane
    • the registrar’s office: noncurrent student transcripts, calendars and class schedules, enrollment records, and graduation programs
    • academic, honorary, service, and social organizations of students, faculty, administrators, and staff actively connected with the university
  • Publications, newsletters, posters, and booklets about or distributed by Tulane, e.g., books, posters, magazines, catalogs, special bulletins, yearbooks, student newspapers, university directories and faculty/staff rosters, alumni magazines, lecture series, and ephemeral materials.
  • Special format materials documenting the operation and development of the institution, such as:
    • still photographs, digital images, slides, negatives, motion picture films, audio, audiovisual cassettes and multi-media productions
    • maps and plans of the campus and its buildings
  • Student final projects:
    • Ph.D., Master’s, and Honors theses, dissertations and portfolios
    • Social Work group reports
  • Electronic records and descriptive aids for maintaining access to the records
  • Artifacts related to Tulane University (as space permits)

Because we are an institutional archive, records that we maintain are created by the university and they come to us through departmental transfer rather than by donation from outside sources. Personal research and papers of faculty, students, and alumni which are not related to the official operation of the university are considered to be the private property of the individuals who produced them, and as such, they are not deposited into the University Archives, but instead may be donated to whichever archival repository the creator chooses.    

University Archives and Tulane University School of Medicine Archives

A distinction should be made between the University Archives and Tulane University School of Medicine records. Although there is no organized archive of historical documents pertaining to the Medical College of Louisiana and the Medical Department of the University of Louisiana, scattered records of the medical school’s early history do exist. Many of the early administrative and matriculates ledgers from the predecessors of the Tulane School of Medicine have been transferred to the University Archives, so we have records and/or registers of medical students dating from 1834 to around 1957. For more recent years, medical students' records are maintained by the School of Medicine’s Office of Graduate Medical Education. Of course, all living students' records are confidential and may only be released with the student's written consent.