On April 21, 1979 the Amherst College Board of Trustees voted that “Records of permanent historical value should be deposited in the Archives of the College when retention in active files is no longer considered necessary by the Department, Committee, or Administrator responsible for the records.” Generally, non-electronic records designated for permanent retention should be deposited in the Archives for secure physical storage. The Archives’ staff works with units within the College to physically transfer materials to archival storage and to ensure easy access to original documents when necessary.
Some categories of College records are open to researchers, some require special permission for access, and some are absolutely confidential. These pages are intended to provide guidance for both units of Amherst College that generate records and for users interested in consulting College records.
Requests for official transcripts and certification letters are handled by the Office of the Registrar. Please see their Transcripts & Certifications page for instructions on how to request these materials.
Student health records are retained for a limited time and are strictly confidential. Requests for health records must be made through Student Health Services. See "Requesting a copy of your medical records" on the Student Health Service web page for instructions.
Closed a minimum of 10 years after date of creation. After 10 years, closed until the death of the record’s subject. If no record of the subject’s death exists, closed until 90 years after date of creation. If such records mention the confidential affairs of other students, the records remain closed until the death of those other students (or 90 years after date of creation). See the attached Records Release Policy for more details.
The Amherst College Board of Trustees voted to approve a Records Release Policy at their October 15, 2016 meeting. In light of its commitment to support all manner of scholarship and research, the Amherst College Archives restricts access to college records only to the extent necessary to honor legal requirements and privacy considerations. The Archives will make records available to the public according to the following schedule, unless other, unanticipated or new legal requirements preclude doing so. For the complete Records Release Policy see the attached PDF.
Records Management Policy Schedule
This schedule provides for the review, retention, and disposition of records received, created or maintained by the College in connection with the conduct of College business. The schedule indicates how long various records should be retained and when they should be disposed. It is designed to ensure compliance with federal and state laws and regulations, to eliminate inadvertent destruction of records, and to reduce costs by promoting efficiency in the College’s operations and freeing up storage space.