For depositors: Donating material to the Berkeley language archives

The Survey of California and Other Indian Languages supports the documentation, study, and revitalization of the indigenous languages of California and the Americas. We maintain a major archive of field notes and other documentary materials, some of it digitized and available online; we also curate the collection of linguistic field recordings in the Berkeley Language Center. For more information about the scope and nature of our collections, please read our Collection and Mission webpages.

Donations of materials within the scope of our collections policy are welcome. If you have material you would like to donate to the Survey of California and Other Indian Languages, or to the Berkeley Language Center, please contact the Survey Director, Andrew Garrett, by telephone, email, or letter.

In accordance with professional standards and the Society of American Archivists code of ethics, please be aware that our aim is to promote, rather than to restrict access to records. In special cases, we can restrict sensitive information for the lifetime of the donor or other contributor.

What we collect

The Berkeley language archives collect primary sources on California and other indigenous languages. We selectively collect secondary sources, focusing on severely endangered languages, unpublished papers and talks, and material of unusually high research interest.

Primary sources include original writings and works of oral literature, field notes and audiovisual recordings that document California and other Indian languages, as well as correspondence, notes, slip files or databases that contextualize and elucidate the literature or field records. Secondary sources include scholarly papers, articles, journals and books that draw on primary research to address topics relating to California and other Indian languages.

Steps to donate material

  1. Contact Andrew Garrett, Director of the Survey of California and Other Indian Languages, to discuss whether your material is within the collecting scope of the Berkeley language archives.
  2. Organize the material and record metadata. Use the Berkeley language archives metadata form and sample spreadsheet.
  3. Complete the gift agreement.
  4. Package the material well and mail it to the Survey or bring it personally:

Survey of California and Other Indian Languages
Department of Linguistics
University of California, Berkeley
1203 Dwinelle Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720-2650

Prearchiving for depositors at Berkeley

Potential depositors who are currently at Berkeley (faculty and students) can use the CLA prearchive interface to deposit their digital materials with us. You can find a guide to the process of prearchiving here.