The Importance of Digital Archiving

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An image from the ATE Impacts book, from COMPASS, an instructor and student discuss code on a computer

Needing an archiving refresh? Check out the information on our website about ATE Central's Archiving Service!

Whether you’re just getting started with ATE, or you’ve been part of the community for a while, the information provided will help guide your archiving efforts. As you may know, archiving with ATE Central is an NSF requirement for grantees but also supports sustainability, ensuring your project or center’s deliverables are available beyond the life of your ATE funding.

During a discussion with Kendra Bouda, ATE Central's Metadata and Information Specialist, we asked her a series of five questions about archiving.  The answers provide an overview of the archiving service, and a general outline of how the process works.

What is an archive?

  • An archive is a collection of materials – often composed of primary source documents – that has been preserved for its enduring value. For ATE Central's Archiving Service, deliverables and select administrative documents are collected, stored, and made available in a digital format.

Why should I archive?

  • No matter how far along you are in meeting the goals of your project or center, dissemination and continued access to the materials you create are vital. By archiving your materials with ATE Central, your colleagues, fellow ATE grantees, and others can benefit from the easy access provided.

Am I required to archive with ATE Central?

  • Yes. Grantees who received funding in or after 2015 are required to archive their deliverables—as described in their initial grant proposals—with ATE Central.

If I am required to archive with ATE Central, what must I archive?

  • The deliverables created by your project or center will make up the majority of your archived material. Depending on the scope of your project or center’s work, this might include course content, informational videos, research reports, or other items created during the lifecycle of your grant.

When should I get started and how do I plan for archiving with ATE Central?

  • The earlier the better! The sooner you prepare to archive with ATE Central, the easier it will be. Ideally, you’ll start planning to archive before you create your very first deliverable. But don’t feel discouraged if you are mid-grant or even at the end of your grant and haven’t started archiving. Information on our website will help guide you through the process and ATE Central staff are, of course, always happy to help!

For specific questions about archiving, don’t hesitate to contact the team at

    ATE Impacts

Last Edited: December 19th, 2022 at 2:35pm by Meredith Whye

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