common sense. This is the reason why the Archivschule received from its board
the order to build up its own, new master course for records management in
addition to its traditional archival education. This course will include aspects of
archival science, just as the archival education course includes lessons in records
management, but these are two different courses with different priorities.
Implementation of bachelor and master courses in Amsterdam 2002
and its consequences
One more main organizational step of the Dutch archival education was to
change the training at the University of Amsterdam as well as at the 'Hogeschool"
[Polytechnics] to bachelor and master courses in 2002. This was very early if one
compares it with the other European countries24 and especially with the German
discussion about the Bologna Process, which started at the universities often not
before 2004 and at the Archivschule not before the end of 2006.
The educational programme was restructured, modularized and the student's
workload was newly defined.25 It was not only another system but also the
moment to change from a more knowledge based education to a focus on
competencies. This means that the students themselves had to analyze a given
problem, and try to find out what kind of knowledge and skills they need to solve
it. Hans Scheurkogel named this "leren-leren-concept"26 or competencies-focused.
This was not only a necessary change as a result of the Bologna Process but
also an answer to the continuously growing list of content an archivist should
know and as Theo Thomassen wrote: "a change from the industrial based to the
information based education".27
The students shall learn to solve any problem by themselves guided only by
the lecturers. The focus is not only on the knowledge of all aspects of archival
sciences, but the ability to solve a given problem in a given time.
One problem of this new kind of education is that the graduates of this course do
not have as wide a knowledge of all kinds of facts as their predecessors. However
the older archivists, who are looking for new staff, expect this kind of knowledge
and do not see the advantages, which this education involves. At the moment
it is hard to say whether these misunderstandings and the different results of
the discussion about the job description are also responsible for the end of the
Archie/school as an independent institution, but this seems to be a possibility from
an external point of view.
Since the Dutch discussion about the job description of an archivist continued,
the content of archival education at the Hogeschool and the University of
Amsterdam has changed a little bit to cater for the needs of those who focus
KARSTEN UHDE TIMES ARE CHANGING
25 The new curriculum is explained in: Theo Thomassen: 'Archiefopleiding krijgt nieuwe structuur' in:
Archievenblad, Mei 2001, p. 12-14.
26 Hans Scheurkogel: 'De archivaris: welk beroep, welke opleiding?' in: Archievenblad, 106 2002, p. 18-19, here
27 Theo Thomassen: Modelling and re-modelling archival education and training. Paper of the 1st European confe
rence of archival educators and trainers, Marburg 2001, published online at: www.ica-sae.org/mrconfpaperl.
html (as at 04.02.2010).