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Class Instruction

Special Collections & Archives supports a wide variety of teaching and learning experiences and we are always excited to assist in developing creative and innovative ways to use the collections. Since 2010, we have collaborated on over 350 courses and faculty from across disciplines have found meaningful ways to integrate SC&A’s resources into their classes. Many classes visit in order to examine materials specific to a course topic, but we also invite faculty to use our collections to explore concepts such as the nature of evidence and the interpretation of historical materials.

Single class session with no subsequent assignment

Offers students general familiarity with SC&A materials and procedures; experience handling rare and fragile items; experience examining, interrogating, and interpreting documents

Single class session with single assignment (requires student return visit(s) to SC&A)

Offers students greater understanding of SC&A collections; experience interpreting materials and confronting challenges like handwritten documents and incomplete documentation; introduces students to the archival research process

Multiple class sessions with multiple assignments (requires student return visits to SC&A)

Offers students deep understanding of SC&A holdings; ability to examine and interpret primary sources complemented by secondary sources; allows students to undertake archival research and learn about primary research methodology through first-hand experience

Here are some of the ways Bowdoin faculty are integrating special collections into teaching:

Nez Perce War & the Oliver Otis Howard Papers
Public Monuments at Bowdoin College: An Archival Exploration
A Life with Cancer: Martha Hall's Artist's Books at Special Collections & Archives
Archive of the Contemporary: Scrapbooks in the College Archives