|DIVISION:||Academic Information Services|
|DATE:||July 27, 1989; revised August 10, 2006; revised December 16, 2011|
|PURPOSE:||To articulate criteria for selecting and managing access to information resources.|
|APPLICABILITY:||Academic Information Services faculty and staff are guided by this policy in selecting new material and managing existing resources.|
As described in its mission statement, the Library provides resources to support University programs and the University community. The Library's primary aim is to support the instructional curricula of the University, both undergraduate and graduate, and to support faculty research and scholarship. In accord with the University's role as a regional center for higher education, the Library also considers the interests of the general community. Recreational interests are considered to a lesser degree.
The Dean bears responsibility for collection development and materials selection. The Dean has delegated overall coordination and selection to the Collection Development Librarian. Participation in collection development and material selection are the responsibility of all members of the Library faculty, who serve as liaisons to departments. Departmental faculty are invited to recommend materials to support their instructional programs and research interests.
Librarians will strive to remain informed of other library collections in the region and refer its clientele to them. Olson Library will not duplicate the special collections of local libraries or general popular collections provided by public libraries.
Current-year publishing will be the primary focus of selection,
defined as the current fiscal year plus the preceding full
calendar year. While materials may be purchased in any format
according to the needs and practices of various scholarly disciplines,
electronic format is generally preferred. The Library seeks
representative and standard works for its collection, not
A more complete list of limitations appears in Section II. B.
In selection, consideration will be given to available alternative means of access, including statewide cooperative lending programs (e.g., MeLCat), interlibrary loan, and online availability via the open Web.
The Olson Library collection is housed in the Edgar L. Harden Learning Resources Center. For the main collection, location is determined by type, material format, or usage. Olson Library may create separate locations for some materials, such as government documents, pre-K-12 materials, audiovisual material, reference material, special collections, the Tyler Collection, and microforms.
Olson Library participates in creating and contributing bibliographic data to national databases and adheres to national cataloging and classification standards. The classification of materials does not necessarily match curricular or departmental definitions.
Olson Library supports the concept of intellectual freedom and the idea of "freedom of expression" as guaranteed by the First Amendment. It further subscribes to the Library Bill of Rights, as approved and adopted by the American Library Association. Thus, the Library bears a responsibility to collect materials with content representing various points of view without endorsement, restriction, or prejudice.
A library user who deems material to be objectionable may register a complaint by completing a Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials. This form must be completed and signed by the person who initiates the request. The form and the material will be forwarded to the Collection Development Librarian, who will be responsible for reviewing the material in accordance with present selection criteria and collection-development objectives. The Collection Development Librarian may consult reviews and outside advice and will review the request with the Dean. The person who has placed the complaint will receive a reply from the Collection Development Librarian in writing indicating the Library's position and any action planned or taken.
Challenged materials meeting the Library's selection criteria will not be removed as a result of pressure. The Library Bill of Rights states in Article I that "materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background or views of those contributing to their creation," and in Article II, that "materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval."
The following questions are considered in selection:
In addition to considerations listed above, periodical titles are strongly preferred that are indexed in standard sources. Olson Library aggressively pursues opportunities to increase access to electronic journals by partnering with consortia and other Michigan academic libraries to negotiate as a group with publishers and other providers. The library provides access to high-quality collections of open-access journals and supports enterprises that make journals accessible online at reasonable cost. The library closely monitors usage statistics to inform decisions on selection and renewal of print and electronic serials.
The Library avoids acquiring the following types of materials:
Gifts are welcome if they meet criteria governing purchased materials. Monetary appraisals or receipts stating value cannot legally be given. The Library must be free to dispose of material not needed. Gifts accepted for inclusion in the collection will be cataloged, processed, and made available to students and faculty according to standard Library procedures. Gift Policy
Worn, damaged, or lost materials may be replaced with new copies, updated editions, or alternative formats, with electronic formats preferred. Other material from within the same discipline may be substituted.
Removing outdated, superseded, damaged, or duplicated material from the collection is a vital part of collection development. Retaining material that is no longer useful can diminish the vitality and appeal of a library collection; valuable materials can easily be overlooked if marginal material is allowed to accumulate. Weeding makes a higher proportion of materials visible to users, and participation in commercial redistribution projects can generate revenue for access to current and future information resources.
While the following general criteria are used to deselect library material, differences are recognized among disciplines and subjects. Materials in the humanities or mathematics retain value much longer than materials in the hard sciences, medicine, or technology, which can become outdated quickly.
Liaison librarians, in consultation with the Collection Development Librarian, take primary responsibility for selecting new materials.
User requests are given special priority. Purchase-request forms are provided on the Library’s web page for recommending titles for purchase. Consultation with a librarian is encouraged.
Normally, only a single copy of a title will be purchased. When demand is very great, as measured by circulation data, a second or third copy may be purchased.
Textbooks designated for current courses are not purchased. Other types of materials required for current courses may be considered if they meet existing selection criteria.
Requests may be rushed to meet immediate needs.
CONTACT: Douglas Black, Collection Development Librarian, (906) 227-1208, or firstname.lastname@example.org