About the Online Archives Search

The Online Archives Search (OAS) provides access to information about the holdings of the University of Sydney Archives. The information is retrieved from the archives control system which is used to manage the holdings.

The information consists of structured details and descriptions of the records (eg, minutes of meetings, correspondence files, records of students and staff, examination papers and results, building plans & photographs) and of the administrative entities (eg, organisations, faculties, offices or business units) and persons associated with the University which created the records held in the Archives.

The Online Archives Search brings you information about the records, not direct access to any of the actual records. NOTE: some records (those less than 30 years old, or less than 50 years old, where they contain personal information) are not available to researchers

Understanding the Archives Control System

The archives control system is organised on the principles of the Australian series system. Record items are kept and described in series (chronological sequences or accumulations of records created through similar work activities) and the series information is related to the information about the administrative entity or person which created them.

You can start searching at any level (record item, record series or administrative entity or person) and navigate between levels from the results page by clicking on the hyperlinks. The information retrieved is displayed in tables. All hyperlinks take you to a second page where you can find links to more series created by the same entity or to predecessor and succeeding entities or record series.

Definitions of archival entities in OAS

Organisation (educational)
Autonomous, high-level body established for educational purposes which has created records
Unit of an organisation established to undertake specific activities
Individual associated with the University of Sydney whose personal records are held by the Archives
Records created by
Categories of entities whose records are held by the Archives
Information created or received and kept as evidence and information in conducting business activities and /or for legal purposes
Records accumulated by the same activities or kept by the same agency over time
Single record entity in an accumulation of records. May be a single page, a bundle, a volume, or folder holding papers
Period of years during which records were created

Entities are linked hierarchically. In OAS you can view a list of record Series created by an Agency or Person, or a list of Agencies or persons associated with an Organisation.

From the Item level entity you can establish what record series the item belongs to, but you cannot, at present, see a list of items in a series. If this is what you are seeking, please contact the to request a list of items in series.

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