Ion beam sputter-deposition has been used to produce high temperature superconducting (HTSC) thin films with controlled orientation. Room temperature scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) studies of ion beam sputter-deposited Y-Ba-Cu-O thin films indicate that the growth mode depends on whether the films are a- or c-axis oriented. The c-axis oriented films appear to grow by a screw dislocation mechanism, producing layered spirals similar to those observed in films grown by plasma sputtering and laser ablation-deposition. STM images of the a-axis oriented films show a growth mode which appears to produce layered structures perpendicular to the substrate with no spirals. Scanning tunneling spectroscopy (STS) studies of the a- and c-axis oriented films tend to reflect the anisotropy of the Y-Ba-Cu-O structure. Both the c-axis and the a-axis oriented films have semiconducting characteristics, possibly due to a native oxide, with a band gap estimated to be 1.4 eV. The c-axis oriented film, however, exhibits more fine structure in its density of states. This apparent anisotropie band structure reflects the anisotropie Y-Ba-Cu-O microstructure and superconducting characteristics. Investigations with x-ray photcelectron spectroscopy (XPS) establish a substantial chemical difference between the two surfaces inferring more substantial native oxides and air-induced by-products on the a-axis oriented film.