The Documentation Unit of the Akademi was set up in 1953 with the aim of preserving the heritage of the performing arts through the medium of audio, video, and photographic documentation. What started as a small unit with only one member on the staff has now grown in strength with 14 members on the staff and is headed by the Deputy Secretary (Documentation).

Located on the third floor of the SNA Wing in Rabindra Bhavan, the Akademi's Documentation Unit is perhaps the first and the only one in its kind which exclusively specializes in audio / video documentation of the performing arts traditions. It has developed its skills and expertise under the guidance and assistance of experts and scholars who have been associated with the work of the Akademi from time to time.

An integral part of the Akademi, the documentation unit has contributed significantly to the aims and objectives of the SNA.