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Post card from the USA

Post Card from USAPOSTCARD FROM THE USA, posted by Nancy MacKay May, 10, 2017

Many IOHA members are looking forward the conference in Finland June 18-21, and if your household is anything like mine, you are spending some heavy-duty time practicing the pronunciation of our host city Jyväskylä.  Other IOHA members may choose to expand their oral historians at home through an online summer course, or to attend an oral history institute in the United States.

If so you have plenty of opportunities. Here is a selection of educational opportunities, online or in-person, of interest to the oral history community.  Opportunities are listed in chronological order of the offering. Though the information is current at the time of posting, be sure to check directly with institution if you are interested in participating, especially about registration deadlines.

Item:  StoryCenter Workshops

Sponsoring Institution:  StoryCenter

Location:  Home office, Berkeley, California. Training is offered online and in person, in Berkeley and in locations around the world

Dates:  throughout the year

Description:  StoryCenter “creates spaces for transforming lives and communities, through the acts of listening to and sharing stories.” It provides ongoing training around the world in all aspects of digital storytelling. The organization also encourages partnerships with local groups around the world to customize training for a particular goal or application.

To Register:  See course catalog,  for offerings in digital storytelling, story facilitation, and special topics. Each course has details about location, length, and cost Some courses are free.

Best contact:


Item: Digital Tools for Oral History

Sponsoring Institution: Baylor University Institute for Oral History (BUIOH)

Location: Online

Dates: May 23, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Central Daylight Time – single three hour session.

Description: The workshop will focus on a selection of innovative options and applications available to the twenty-first century oral historian. BUIOH Director Stephen Sloan and Senior Editor/Collection Manager Steven Sielaff will discuss software and web platforms (most of which are free/open source!) that will enable you to accomplish and enhance your project goals of preservation, access, curation, and dissemination. Since workshops are recorded and provided to participants, if you cannot attend the live session the only thing you miss out on is the ability to ask questions.

To Register: Cost is $75. Note: registration closes May 16.   Follow this link:

Contact:  Steven Sielaff,


Item: Basics of Archives

Sponsoring Institution: American Association of State and Local History (AASLH)

Location: Online

Dates: June 4-July 9

Description: This self-paced course is designed to give organizations and individuals who are responsible for the care of historical records an introduction to the core aspects of managing and protecting historical records collections, using appropriate principles and best practices. Lessons cover the following topics: The course consists of five lessons: archives and archivists, acquiring your collections, processing collections, housing your collections, access and outreach. This is a beginning level course designed for professional staff and volunteers of historical organizations and libraries with historical collections.

To Register: cost is $160 for non-AASLH members; $85 for members. Registration open till May 21 at

Best contact:  or  615-320-3203.

Item: The Field School: participatory action research project

Sponsoring Institution: The Field School, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

Location: On site, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Dates: June 4-July 13

Description: Picturing Milwaukee is a participatory action-research project that explores history and heritage of local neighborhoods. This immersive learning experience provides students a unique opportunity to learn basic skills, ethics, theories and methods within their academic disciplines and then apply such learning in real-life situation. Much of the work is story-based/oral history-based, field recording of the built environment and cultural landscapes and offers an opportunity to learn how to write history literally “from the ground up.” Participants come from around the world focusing on multiple academic disciplines. International students are especially welcome.

To Register: This is a college level class. Students can receive college level credits by enrolling at the University of Wisconsin or can enroll for FREE as a community intern. The application form is here:

Contact: Arijit Sen,

Item: Collections Management

Sponsoring Institution: American Association of State and Local History (AASLH)

Location: Online

Dates: July 9- September 3

Description: This is an 8-week, online, weekly-paced course about managing cultural collections.  Collections management consists all the activities related to the administration of collections. Course topics include collections policies, how to know what you have, what you need to know about your collections, how to know where everything in your collection is located, and optimizing access to the collection.

To Register: $295 for non-AASLH members; $195 for members. Registration is open till June 25 and is limited to 30 people. Register at

Contact: or 615-320-3203.

Item: Advanced Oral History Summer Institute

Sponsoring Institution: Oral History Center, Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley,

Location: Berkeley, California

Dates: August 6-10

Description: The institute is designed for graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, university faculty, independent scholars, and museum and community-based historians who are engaged in oral history work. The goal of the institute is to strengthen the ability of its participants to conduct research-focused interviews and to consider special characteristics of interviews as historical evidence in a rigorous academic environment.

To Register: View details and application here,  Cost: $950.

Best contact: Shanna Farrell

Item: Oral History Intensive Workshop

Sponsoring Institution:  Oral History Summer School

Location: Hudson, New York

Dates: June 18-June 29

Description: This immersive summer workshop is a rigorous introduction to the field of oral history. Over the course of twelve days, we’ll cover interview techniques, project design, recording techniques, and ethics, along with special topics related to the field. No experience necessary. This year’s workshop will include special sessions on ‘Oral History & Care. We’ll explore topics including illness narratives, health narratives, dignity, oral history and medical research, testimony and end-of-life narratives.

To Register: Official registration is closed, but applicants will be considered when space allow. Go to  and clink on the APPLY button. Workshop cost: $1500

Best contact: website: