Skip to Content



Preservation 101: Preservation Basics for Paper and Media Collections


The Preservation 101 course is designed to provide a foundation for effective collections stewardship by guiding participants through preservation topics such as environmental management, deterioration of materials, and emergency preparedness.  The course prepares participants to complete a preservation needs assessment and provides structured guidance on developing an institutional disaster plan.

Preservation 101 is available in two online formats: as a free, self-guided course, and as a paid course led by an instructor with activities and participant interaction.  The facilitated version is updated frequently to include new research and standards for preservation practices.

The facilitated version of Preservation 101 is an interactive online course. A series of 10 live webinars builds on self-paced study between sessions, using assigned readings and other resources to supplement the “classroom” discussions.  The instructor provides lesson plans and feedback on assignments. Participants will have access to webinar recordings and additional tools, while engaging in weekly dialogue with the instructor and fellow participants.

Revised and updated for the 2015 session, the course uses the free online version of Preservation 101 as its textbook, adding expanded resources and assignments, interactive discussions and activities, and new content covering audiovisual and digital formats as well as digital preservation. Putting theory into practice, participants will develop recommendations for improvements that can be made within their institution, and can use these recommendations to build a long-range preservation plan.

Benefits of Preservation 101, The Instructor-led Course

  • 10 live webinars led by a preservation specialist, who provides weekly lectures and oversees the online forum.
  • An introduction to the characteristics of paper-based materials, photographs, audiovisual media, and digital content.
  • Examination of key causes of deterioration in archival collections and strategies for slowing deterioration and preventing loss
  • Discussion of conservation treatment options; prioritization; and reformatting strategies for preservation and access.
  • Guidance for using dPlan™: The Online Disaster Planning Tool, with the optional goal of having a completed basic disaster plan by the end of the course.
  • Opportunities to share experiences and concerns with other participants through online discussion and chats.
  • Dozens of supplementary resources to help guide your local preservation assessment and planning.
  • A Certificate of Completion
  • Eligible Certified Archivists (CAs) earn 20 Archival Recertification Credits (ARCs) through The Academy of Certified Archivists.

Classes begin February 12, 2015, and are held every other Thursday through June 18, 2015.  Meeting times are 2pm-4pm ET.

Who Shoud Attend?

  • Staff of cultural heritage institutions who have taken on a preservation role; who are prioritizing preservation activities; or who are advocating for larger preservation projects
  • Town, municipal, or county records keepers
  • Corporate archivists
  • Students or graduates of library and information science or museum studies programs

Registration Closed (2015 Course)

Cost: $650 Regular rate
         $500 Student rate (limited space available; copy of current student ID is required)


Contact: Eva Grizzard, NEDCC Preservation Specialist,, 978-470-1010 ext. 224

Preservation 101: Preservation Basics for Paper and Media Collections

PLEASE NOTE: The self-guided version of Preservation 101 is currently being updated and will be available soon.

Self-guided Preservation 101 provides the basic introductions, texts, and resources to help build an effective preservation program for an institution.  Modules, activities, and readings are posted for participants to work at their own pace.  Each section requires two to three hours to complete. 

NOTE: No instructor is available to work with participants in this self-guided version.  No continuing education credit is available for completion of this course.


Preservation 101: Preservation Basics for Paper and Media Collections was developed with funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities.  Designed as an introductory course, it grounds participants in the theory and practice of preserving library and archival collections.