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Microforms: Microfiche, Microfilm, and Microcards

This guide is designed to help you find and use microforms in the Alvin Sherman Library.

What are microforms?

Microforms are microphotographic reproductions of documents, often on film.

Two common types of microforms are microfiche and microfilm.


Microfiche are small sheets of film with printed miniatures of documents. They are flat and usually stored in an envelope. US Military Veterans and service members who were discharged prior to 2002 likely received a copy of their service record, Official Military Personnel File (OMPF), upon discharge.

Several microfiche cards stacked on each other


Microfilm prints are either 16mm or 35mm and are wound on a spool. For easier viewing, these spools can be loaded onto a microfilm reader which can advance to the next page with a click or button push.

spool of microfilm