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Archives and Special Collections: Musicians' Union Archive Trainee 2019

The role

The Library Archives and Research Support Team provides a range of specialist services to researchers, providing advice and support to research staff and students alike.  Areas of specialism include open access, citation analysis and bibliometrics, research data management and curation, scholarly communications, repositories, metadata standards and policies, research lifecycle, RMS, and intellectual property, and the University Archives.  The team proactively promotes developments in these areas to the research community, and working in partnership with the Research & Enterprise Office and Learning & Teaching Support Team, provides workshops and other events to develop and/or refresh the skills of researchers. 

The Musicians’ Union Archive Trainee post (digitisation) is a six-week fixed-term post funded by the Musicians’ Union to provide experience and training for working in the heritage sector. The trainee will work in the University Archives under the supervision of the University Archivist on a project to digitise The Musician, the journal of the Musicians’ Union. They will prepare the items for digitisation, carry out the digitisation of the material to recognised professional standards and assist in the publication and promotion of this new resource.  

Since its transfer to the University of Stirling Archives in 2009 the Musicians’ Union Archive has been one of our most used collections with researchers from around the UK (and further afield) using the collection for a wide variety of research projects. The archive also receives a large amount of enquiries from members of the public engaged in family history research whose relatives were professional musicians. In 2016 a new history of the Union was published which has generated further interest in the collection (Cloonan, M. & Williamson, J., Players’ Work Time – A Social History of the Musicians’ Union, Manchester University Press). 

The timing of this 6 week post is flexible but we expect it to be completed during the summer of 2019. The post is advertised at Grade 4 SP 14 (£20,836) in line with the salary recommendations for para-professional staff issued by the Archives and Records Association in 2018.   

Key Duties and Responsibilities

Specific Tasks:  

  • Preparing the collection for digitisation by assessing condition of items, removing staples and other external fasteners, numbering each individual page
  • Creating metadata for each page of each item to be digitised, recording condition and content  
  • Digitising items to IIIF-standard 600dpi TIFFs  
  • Preparing new resource for upload to new archives / art collection catalogue  
  • Liaise with Musicians’ Union re promotion of new resource through the union’s publicity channels and also promote via University Archives social media channels 

 General Tasks:

  • Responding to enquiries directed to the Research & Scholarly Communications team, by email, telephone or in person. 
  • Production of user support materials in partnership with the librarians and/or archivist, to inform and enable researchers and users. 
  • Publishing online content on behalf of the librarians and/or archivist, including the University website, blog and social media.
  • Supporting team members with general administrative/clerical support. 
  • Any other duties commensurate with the job grade as reasonably required from time to time. 

Person specification


  • Educated to Higher, A-level or equivalent, including English and Maths   


  • ECDL or other similar IT qualification.
  • Evidence of working towards a postgraduate qualification in archives (or similar heritage qualification). 

Knowledge & Experience 

  • Experience of providing excellent administrative, clerical or other related support services.
  • Experience of engaging with a wide range of stakeholders, including for example, members of the public.
  • Demonstrable IT literacy – including MS Office, Internet, email and social media. 


  • Experience of working in an archive, library or academic research environment.
  • Experience of working on a digitisation project. 

Skills & Attributes  

  • Excellent communication skills, including written and verbal.
  • Demonstrable ability to prioritise workload and to work to deadlines.
  • Demonstrable organisational skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills to deal with research staff, and the wider academic community.
  • Excellent attention to detail.
  • Equally able to work as part of a team, or alone without supervision. 


  • Able to work flexibly, providing cover outwith regular shift pattern. 

Behaviours / Competencies

We place great importance on behaviours and attitudes during the selection process to ensure that we bring people into the University who support the way we do business.  In addition to the duties and responsibilities associated with this role, the role holder will be required to evidence that they can meet the qualities associated with the following behavioural competencies, as detailed within the AUA Competency Framework.  

1. Managing self and personal skills

Being aware of own behaviour and mindful of how it impacts on others, enhancing personal skills to adapt professional practice accordingly.

2. Delivering excellent service

Providing the best quality service to external and internal clients. Building genuine and open longterm relationships in order to drive up service standards.

3. Finding solutions

Taking a holistic view and working enthusiastically to analyse problems and to develop workable solutions. Identifying opportunities for innovation.

4. Embracing change

Being open to and engaging with new ideas and ways of working. Adjusting to unfamiliar situations, shifting demands and changing roles.

5. Using resources effectively

Identifying and making the most productive use of resources including people, time, information, networks and budgets.

6. Engaging with the wider context

Enhancing your contribution to the organisation through an understanding of the bigger picture and showing commitment to organisational values.

7. Developing self and others

Showing commitment to own ongoing professional development. Supporting and encouraging others to develop their professional knowledge, skills and behaviours to enable them to reach their full potential.

8. Working together

Working collaboratively with others in order to achieve objectives.  Recognising and valuing the different contributions people bring to this process. 

9. Achieving results

Consistently meeting agreed objectives and success criteria. Taking personal responsibility for getting things done.