Belinda Reich

Audiovisual Collection Policy

The University Audiovisual Archive Mission

The University Audiovisual Archive’s (UAA) purpose is to collect, preserve, curate, and provide access to audiovisual artefacts relevant to the University of ACT’s history and activities. The UAA represents the unique corporate, academic, research, teaching, and social history of the University of ACT (National Archives, 2011, p. 7).

Since the University of ACT’s creation in 1975, the UAA has collected over 100,000 films, videos, audio recordings, and digitised or accepted born-digital files that highlight, document, remember, and showcase the university community in audiovisual format.

Scope of the University Audiovisual Archive Collection Development Policy

The scope of this policy is to guide the development and the acquisition methods of the University Audiovisual Archive (UAA) collection. The policy directs the UAA staff in their role of collecting, and informs the University of ACT and extramural communities about the activities of UAA (Johnson, 2018, p. 83). In summary, the policy describes the UAA’s selection criteria, inclusions, exclusions, collaboration, selection, and the acquisition and communication methods used to acquire items from these groups.

The UAA collects in support of telling the story of the University of ACT and its communities from the past and present that helps build on the University of ACT’s mission “to transform lives and add to human knowledge and understanding in a way that creates a future that benefits all” (Griffith University, n.d.).

This policy aligns with the University of ACTS’s Strategic Plan 2020-2025 (Grifftih University, n.d.), and delivers to UAA users by (Bryson, 2016, p. 27):

The scope of this policy does not include preservation of or access to the UAA. Policies that address these topics can be found here:

  • University Audiovisual Archive Preservation Policy
  • University Audiovisual Archive Access Policy

Collection Statement

Selection Criteria

The University Audiovisual Archive (UAA) will acquire and preserve audiovisual items that represent importance to the UAA pertaining to its mission, and the University of ACT’s corporate and strategic goals (Johnson, 2018, p. 79).

The UAA is focused on moving image and sound items that are related to the corporate, academic, research, teaching, and social history of the University of ACT (National Archives, 2011, p. 7). The current strengths of the UAA collection include historical film, video, and sound from the early era of the university (approximately 1972–2000). The UAA is currently prioritising collection of items created in the past 10 years that are born-digital from the University of ACT corporate, academic, research, students, and teaching areas, to strengthen the collection that will assist the UAA in meeting its mission and the university’s current strategic aims (Johnson, 2018, p. 83). Other criteria that UAA may use to select items for the archive include: relevance of content, depth of collection, quality of material, cost, usage terms, format, access, and overlap with existing resources (State Library of Western Australia, 2013, p. 6).

The Archive’s Collection Manager has reserved rights to make final decisions regarding inclusions and exclusions.


Items that the UAA may accept into the audiovisual collection must directly relate to, or have strong links to, the corporate, academic, research, teaching, and social history of the University of ACT.

Examples of items that may be accepted include:

    • Moving image or audio created for the purposes of promotion, advertising, engagement, or initiatives to an external or internal audience of the University of ACT
    • Moving image or audio related to the campus, community, and social life of the University of ACT, which may include on- or off-campus activity
    • Moving image or audio of speeches, graduations, or addresses
    • Moving image or audio of faculty, schools, institutes, or university guest speeches, addresses, ceremonies, teaching, or conferences

Example of formats that may be accepted (National Archives, 2011, p. 7):

  • 16mm and 8mm film
  • VHS, Betamax, Laser Disk, U-Matic, Betacam, Video8, Hi8, and Digital8
  • DVD, MiniDV, DVCPRO, DVCAM, SD Cards, USB drives, Zip drive, Jaz drive
  • Cassette tape, reel-to-reel tape, Mini-Cassette, Microcassettes, 8-track tape, CD, Digital Audio Tape
  • MP3, MP4, MPEG4, WAV, QuickTime MOV, AIFF, AVI

Due to the University of ACT being created in 1975, the UAA does not generally accept items on formats not listed above, unless the format contains content which holds great significance for the archive or university (National Archives, 2011, p. 13).


The UAA will not accept items that are not time-based moving image or audio. Documentation, artefacts, and photographs related to the corporate, academic, research, teaching, and social history of the University of ACT will be referred to the university’s corporate archive for consideration (National Archives, 2011, p. 8).

Due to operational capacity limitations, formats that are now obsolete or require specialised playback hardware that the UAA does not hold, will be assessed on a case-by-case basis, and may be referred to a partner organisation for assessment (National Archives, 2011, p. 13).


The UAA works in collaboration with the University of ACT’s Corporate Archive and Strategic Office to determine collecting priorities. Additionally, UAA collaborates with State Archives on items that may be of great significance to the university or the community (National Archives, 2011, p. 24).


The permanent removal of items from the collection may occur in the following circumstances (National Film and Sound Archive, 2020, p. 6):

  • Duplicates of items are found beyond the recommended quantity
  • The item is damaged or deteriorated beyond reasonable conservation treatment
  • An over-representation in one area of the collection that impinges on the growth of areas of least strength
  • The item is found to be fraudulently offered to the UAA

Policy Implementation

Acquisition Methods

Within the context of the UAA’s Collection Statement and to align with the University of ACT’s strategic aims, the following acquisition methods are used (Evans & Pymm, 2020):

Deposit per University of ACT Retention Regulations

  • Corporate-created audiovisual items that are produced using the University of ACT’s facilities, hardware, computers, or equipment for the purposes of communication, advertisement, initiatives, or engagement for an internal or external audience are required to deposit a digital copy to the UAA
    • Academic, research, teaching, and social history audiovisual items that are produced using the University of ACT’s facilities, hardware, computers, or equipment for an internal or external audience, and created in the course of employment with the university, are required to deposit a digital copy to the UAA


  • All audiovisual items donated become the physical property of the UAA and all rights to the items must be owned by the donor to be able to enter any negotiations with UAA
    • In cases which the donor requests retention of copyright, the university requires that UAA and the University of ACT be given the option to duplicate and digitise the item for use in the creation of university-wide digital content, or for use on the physical grounds of UAA or the university. This option agreement is negotiated on a case-by-case basis
    • Donors may be eligible for cultural gift tax incentives and can be discussed with the UAA Collection Manager


  • Only used for items that the UAA deems to be greatly significant to the university and cannot be obtained using the donor method and is dependent on available funds. This significance may include cultural, technical, or historical forms. The UAA Collection Manager uses a selection criterion to determine this significance that includes the importance to the university’s strategic priorities and the UAA’s mission (Pymm, 2006, p. 64).


To achieve the aims set out in this policy, the UAA will conduct targeted communication outreach to university staff and students, and to potential donors, that explains these aims and to convey which areas of the collection the UAA is seeking to strengthen, and items that require deposit (Johnson, 2018, p. 241). The UAA uses the university’s internal and external communication pathways to convey targeted messages to various groups to solicit deposits and donations. University-wide awareness communication outreach projects will be implemented to educate different sectors of staff about their responsibility to deposit audiovisual creations and to instruct how the archive can be utilized to further the university’s strategic priorities.


  • Audiovisual Collection Policy

  • August 2021

Audiovisual Collection Policy created for Audiovisual Archiving course in Master of Information Studies at Charles Sturt University.