34381 - Computer Science for Archive Keeping (1) (LM)

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Quality education Industry, innovation and infrastructure Partnerships for the goals

Academic Year 2021/2022

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course students will know the main elements of the archival document and the related finding aids for computer processing. From one side they will recognize problems related to the description according to the standards in use ; on the other they will be aware of the issue of conservation and preservation over time. They will be able to devote special attention to the creation of open access environments for digital documents in the field of historical archives.

Course contents

The basic principles of general and special archivistics will be introduced in order to understand the basic requirements for the design of digital document systems. The main national and local archival information systems will be illustrated and used. If possible, meetings are also planned at archival institutes to explore practical cases of application of computer tools to the description and management of archival documentation. The regulatory and institutional aspects related to the production, management and conservation of electronic records in Italy will also be included.


All students:

  • Maria Guercio, Archivistica informatica. I documenti in ambiente digitale, Roma, Carocci editore, 2019 (except the last chapter).
  • Stefano Vitali, Passato digitale. Le fonti dello storico nell’era del computer, Bruno Mondadori, 2004


Attending students, in addition:

    • M. Nerini, Corso di Archivistica informatica 2021/2022educational material in support of the lessons, downloadable from "Insegnamenti online - Supporto online alla didattica" (https://iol.unibo.it [https://iol.unibo.it/] ).


    Non-attending students, in addition:

    • Federico Valacchi, Diventare archivisti: competenze tecniche di un mestiere sul confine, Milano, Bibliografica, 2015.

    Other texts can be agreed with the teacher.

    Teaching methods

    The course is structured into frontal lessons. Visits to some State Archives are include in order to ensure a direct approach to documentary heritage, and application models of information technology for their management and use.


    A partial workshop approach is to be expected, along with the examination of some particular case studies and the practical elaboration of specific systems and solutions.

    Assessment methods

    Attending students:

    The oral examination includes the assessment on the basis of three questions, two of which related to reference texts and the third related to the contents of the course.


    Non-attending students:

    The oral examination includes the assessment on the basis of three questions, related to reference texts.



    The assessment will test:

    • knowledge of the main theoretical problems of the discipline
    • proper use of the specialized lexicon of the discipline;
    • ability to expose contents and their logical organization
    • consistency of the argumentation

    The following evaluation scale will be used, with the vote expressed on numbers ranging up to 30:

    • Excellent (30 cum laude)

    • Very Good (28-30)

    • Good (25-27)

    • Satisfactory (22-24)

    • Sufficient (18-21)

    Teaching tools

    Digital instruments and technologies, including audiovisual materials, will be used both in the presentation of issues and in the exemplification of concrete cases.

    Guided tours will be made to archives and archival institutions.


    Office hours

    See the website of Miles Nerini