The National Archives Catalog


Specific Records Type

Mandatory Repeatable Data Type Authority Level Available A/V Only Public Element
No Yes Variable Character Length (700) Specific Records Type Thesaurus Series
File Unit
Item
No Yes
Definition: The intellectual format of the archival materials.
Purpose: Enables users to search for archival materials by the type of document represented in the archival materials.
Relationship: This element is independent.
Guidance:

Choose the correct term from the Specific Records Type Thesaurus.

The physical carrier used to maintain and display the intellectual content of the archival materials will be entered in Media Type.

This data is called an "access point." At the series level, access points must be "anchored" or explained in the descriptive record in which the access point appears. Access points may be anchored in narrative fields like Title, Scope and Content Note, Function and Use, and Shot List or in Creating Organization; access points are not considered anchored by the Container List field. Ask yourself the question "will it be apparent to the user how these holdings relate to the access point I have chosen."

At the file unit and item levels, it is best practice to anchor the terms, and you are encouraged but not required to adhere to best practice.

Examples:
Dispatches
Greeting cards
Letters (correspondence)
Memorandums
Telegrams


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