SFU Records Retention Schedule and Disposal Authority (RRSDA)
Records Disposal Authority Forms

Description | PIB | Authorities | Retentional rational | Rentention and filing guidelines | Status

RRSDA number


Record series

Records Disposal Authority Forms

Office of Primary Responsibility (OPR)

Archives and Records Management Department

Retention periods

Records Active retention (in office) Semi-active (records centre) Total retention Final disposition
Archives and Records Management Department S/O Nil S/O Full Retention by Archives
Electronic records contained in Archives' RRSDA database S/O Nil S/O Destruction
Paper or electronic copies held by all other departments S/O Nil S/O Destruction

CY = Current calendar year; CFY = Current fiscal year; CS = Current semester; S/O = Superseded or obsolete; OPR = Office of Primary Responsibility; Non-OPR = All other departments.

Description, purpose and use of records

Written instruments authorizing retention periods and final disposition (destruction or transfer to Archives) for university records.

Records consist of original, signed Records Retention Schedule and Disposal Authority forms (RRSDAs), original, signed Unscheduled Records Disposal forms (URDs), paper copies, and electronic copies.

RRSDAs are drafted by the Archives and Records Management Department in consultation with the concerned department(s) and come into force upon approval and signature of the University Archivist. The signed originals are filed in Archives; departments are sent paper copies. Electronic versions exist in the Archives' RRSDA Database and on its web site.

An RRSDA is either "on-going" or a "one-time disposal." "On-going" means the schedule provides continuing authority to regularly dispose of records according to its provisions. "One-time" means it applies only to the records specified and does not provide continuing authority for disposals of similar records in the future. All approved, on-going RRSDAs are posted on the Archives' web site.

Unscheduled Records Disposal forms (URDs) were used by the Archives in 1994 as one-time disposal authorities for records stored in the University Records Centre (URC) during the URC clean-up project. These forms are no longer used. Departments were sent paper copies and electronic versions exist in the Archives' URD Database.


These records are created, used, retained and managed in accordance with the following authorities:

Retention rationale

Signed disposal authorities constitute the legal basis for archival transfer and destruction of university records. Departments can consult current RRSDAs on the Archives' web site as needed. Obsolete RRSDAs have long-term value for documenting appraisal decisions.

Retention and filing guidelines

Archives and Records Management Department (OPR)

Paper files:

When an RRSDA is signed and becomes current ("in force"), file it according to RRSDA number (a serial number based on year the RRSDA was drafted – sequential number, e.g. 1999-044 = 44th RRSDA drafted in 1999). Open a new file for each year.

An RRSDA becomes non-current when it superseded (replaced by a new RRSDA), obsolete (discontinued for some other reason), or a one-time RRSDA is implemented (all the office files and URC boxes it applies to are disposed of). When a new RRSDA amends and replaces an old one, note the reasons for the amendment / replacement in the new database record; use the "Previous RRSDA" field to record the number of the amended RRSDA. Remove the original to the Non-current RRSDAs files, also arranged by year. As of March 2000, all URDs have been implemented and are considered non-current.


Keep only records of current (= "in force") and working draft RRSDAs in the database.


When a new RRSDA has been approved, signed and filed, update the word-processing Index of All Approved RRSDAs. Keep the Index filed with the active records.

Before destroying the URD Database, use it to generate an Index List (by department) and file with the URDs.

Web site:

Only on-going RRSDAs currently in force are posted on the web. Always update the web site with any revisions; destroy the web versions of obsolete RRSDAs.

All Other Departments (non-OPR):

Copies of the signed RRSDA are sometimes sent to departments for information purposes. Departments need not retain these after viewing, but may do so if they wish. When implementing an RRSDA, departments should always first consult the web version, as this will reflect any later revisions. Departments are notified of revisions to RRSDAs via the Records Management List-serv.


RRSDA is in force.

Approved by the University Archivist: 9 May 2000

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