Have questions about your research? We can help!
About University Archives
- Ready Reference Collection
- Contributing Materials and Consultation Services
- UCLA History in Library Special Collections Research Guide
The mission of the UCLA University Archives is to identify, collect, arrange, describe, preserve, and provide access to official university records in all formats, including electronic, that document the history of administrative offices and departments, academic departments and programs, related organizations, and activities of faculty, staff, students, and alumni.
In coordination with the UCLA records manager, the university archivist serves as a records consultant and identifies official university records held by administrative and academic offices, departments, and programs.
The University Archives promotes and maintains its designated obligations regarding official university records through partnerships with:
- UCLA Office of the Chancellor
- University of California (UC) Office of the President
- UC university archivists on all ten campuses
Processed archival records administered by the University Archives are available to anyone.
However, priority service is provided to record requests originating from UCLA and UC-affiliated staff, faculty, students, and alumni.
The UCLA University Archives, established in 1949 by Provost Clarence A. Dykstra, is the official repository for non-current UCLA records having permanent historical, fiscal, legal, or administrative value. Records in the University Archives date from the late nineteenth century, when UCLA's predecessor was founded. In 1881 the California state legislature authorized the establishment in Los Angeles of a normal school for the education of teachers, which was named the Los Angeles State Normal School shortly after its creation. In 1919 the school became the second campus of the University of California and was renamed the Southern Branch of the University of California. The name was changed in 1927 to the University of California at Los Angeles, and a comma replaced the word "at" in 1953. The campus has been located in the Westwood area since September 1929, having moved from its previous site on Vermont Avenue near downtown Los Angeles.
The University Archives contains approximately seven thousand linear feet of records, including:
- Correspondence files of chancellors, deans, directors, and chairs
- Minutes of meetings
- Publications of administrative units and academic departments
- Biographical files on persons affiliated with UCLA
- Photographs, films, videotapes, and audiotapes of campus events;
- Architectural drawings and records
- Curricular materials
University Archives finding aids currently available online can be found through the Online Archive of California. Contact the Ahmanson-Murphy Reading Room for more information on collections whose finding aids are not yet online.
A ready reference collection is available through onsite paging. It includes:
- Biographical files arranged alphabetically by name (including curriculum vitae, photographs, biographical statements, and other materials)
- Photograph files arranged alphabetically by subject
- Subject files arranged alphabetically by subject
- Departmental histories
- Course catalogs (Note: catalogs dating from academic years 1882-1883 to 1918-1919 produced by the Los Angeles State Normal School)
- Yearbooks (Note: The 1993-1994 yearbook is missing online but a copy is available in the library)
- Commencement programs
- Student directories
- Daily Bruin
- History Sources, including the Daily Bruin organized by year
All other primary source materials, indicated by a record series number, are stored off-site and must be paged by the Ahmanson-Murphy Reading Room staff; users can then consult them in the reading room. Finding aids for the University Archives collections can be found on the Online Archive of California. When requesting material, provide the record series name and number and the box numbers. Materials should be requested 2-3 days in advance.