Library - Collection Development Policy

Carroll Community College Library
Collection Development Policy


  1. Purpose of the collection development policy
    The collection development policy describes the principles used in developing and maintaining the collection of the Carroll Community College Library. It states the rationale for the selection and de-selection of materials acquired by the Library in its efforts to foster information literacy. The primary role of the Library is to promote learning by providing pertinent materials and services in support of the programs and curricula of the College.

  2. Intellectual Freedom
    The Library endorses the American Library Association Library Bill of Rights and Intellectual Freedom Statement (Appendices I and II). It is the responsibility of the Library to:

    • Make available the widest diversity of views and expression including those which are unorthodox or unpopular with the majority

    • Oppose and challenge all attempts to impose censorship on the Library

    • Preserve the constitutional right of freedom of expression

  3. Common principles in collection development
    The Library's commitment to meeting the instructional and learning needs of the students and faculty of the College underlies all decisions regarding the selection of materials for the collection. Some overarching concerns in the consideration of materials include:

    • The variety of formats in which information is made available

    • Financial constraints

    • Availability of standing orders

    • The cost of processing and maintaining materials

  4. Organization of collection development
    The responsibility for the selection of materials for the Library is shared by the faculty and the professional librarians. Each of the professional librarians acts as a liaison between the Library and an academic division.
    Responsibilities of the liaisons include:

    • Meeting with faculty (alone and in divisional meetings) to receive materials suggestions and to learn of curriculum changes and developments

    • Peruse the review literature for possible purchases

    • Distribute publisher's literature, bibliographies, web sites, and product descriptions to appropriate faculty members for collection suggestions

    • In coordination with faculty members, analyze and evaluate collection subject area resources

    • Assist faculty in identifying tools for collection development

    • Serve as a resource person for library instruction needs

    Faculty members are expected to communicate all collection development needs through their appropriate liaison.

    Recommendations for the collection by College students and staff are also encouraged.

    The Senior Director of the Library and Media Center serves as the chief collection manager who coordinates all selections and deselections. Final authority for any problematic or contested selection decisions rests with the Senior Director.

  5. Selection criteria
    The Library obtains pertinent library materials in accordance with the following priorities:

    1. Materials to support the College's curriculum, programs, and, in general, student learning.

    2. Materials to help faculty members perform teaching and research activities.

    3. Materials not directly related to College programs but of educational, informational, or recreational interest for an educated and informed College community.

    The selection of materials is based on the following list of criteria.

    • Relevant to the College curriculum

    • Projected or existing demand which cannot be met by current resources
    • Faculty recommendation
    • Favorable reviews in the literature
    • Information is timely/current
    • Information is authoritative
    • Information is accurate
    • Format is appropriate to the content
    • Physical quality
    • Level of difficulty and scope is appropriate to community college students
    • Cost of material is justified in terms of anticipated use
    • Any maintenance costs
    • Access restrictions (particularly with regard to electronic resources)
    • Licensing restrictions
    • Physical space requirements
  6. Selection criteria by format
    1. Books
      Book titles are purchased which support the College's curriculum and support such student activities as the writing of research papers, secondary reading, and the completion of class assignments. All book acquisitions (purchased and donated) are based on the criteria stated above, although each title does not need to meet all of the criteria. Special priority may be given to new programs or courses so that a basic collection in that area may be available. Once the primary collection needs in supporting the curriculum have been met, other book titles which are recreational or supplementary in nature may be purchased.

      In general, hardbound editions are to be purchased where the material is considered to have long-term value or is expected to have heavy use. Paperback editions are purchased if there is a temporary need for duplicate copies, if a hardbound edition is unavailable, if the hardbound edition is disproportionately high in price, or if the subject matter is of a time-limited nature.

      Generally, the Library does not purchase more than one copy of each title added to the collection. Multiple copies may be purchased if faculty or librarians deem it necessary.
    2. Textbooks
      In general, the Library does not purchase textbooks adopted for classroom use for the collection. The collection does, however, include some textbooks which have met the above criteria and are expected to remain important over time. Faculty members are welcome to place copies of textbooks on reserve each semester if deemed necessary.
    3. Children's Books
      The Library purchases selected, high quality children's books to support the Early Childhood Education degree program and the Early Childhood Learning Center. In general, only "starred" reviews, titles on a "best of the year" list, or award winners are purchased for this collection.
    4. Reference Books
      Reference book purchases are based on the criteria listed above. Subject specific encyclopedias, dictionaries, statistical compendia, almanacs, chronologies, etc. are purchased as resources allow. In general, the Library should be purchasing more and more reference materials in an electronic, web-based format to accommodate remote access. In addition, greater emphasis should be placed on circulating materials to accommodate user preference.

      A de-emphasis on the purchasing of major general print encyclopedias will occur as web-based encyclopedias develop and become more accessible.
    5. Foreign Language materials
      Only those foreign language materials including audiovisual programs which support the college's curricular objectives and which aid in foreign language study will be purchased for the collection. Specific faculty requests for foreign language materials including periodicals and audiovisual programs will receive the highest priority.
    6. Microform
      A de-emphasis on the purchasing of microform titles will occur as more full text periodicals and serials become available online. Over time, microform titles will only be purchased for resources which require complete retrospective holdings or for which no electronic version exists in the databases to which the Library subscribes.
    7. Periodicals
      The purpose of the periodicals collection is to provide access to current information in support of the college curriculum. In addition, periodicals provide general interest, recreational reading for the college community.

      Selection criteria for periodicals
      • Relevance to the curriculum
      • Recommended by faculty
      • Indexed (without full text) in available indexes (with an emphasis on online resources)
      • Cost
      • Scope
      • Audience level
      • Coverage of a unique subject area

      The renewal of periodicals is done on an annual basis. Any deletions
      or additions to the renewal list are done with the consultation of the

      Backfiles of periodicals will be kept for a relatively short period of time
      to reflect the role and mission of the community college. In some
      areas, notably Art, the retention of the backfiles in paper may be
      considered preferable to other formats.


    8. Newspapers
      The newspaper collection will consist of representative regional newspapers and national newspapers. Relatively small back files of the newspapers will be held with the exception of the New York Times. Greater emphasis on access to electronic newspapers will occur as funding permits.
    9. Standing Orders
      Standing orders are created for materials such as annuals, almanacs, yearbooks, and principally reference resources which have been recognized to be of lasting value to the collection and which require new editions on a regular basis. For the most part, standing orders are to be placed through Baker and Taylor as this allows for the greatest discounts and reduction in processing costs. The standing order renewals are to be reviewed annually for any additions or deletions.
    10. Media
      Audiovisual materials are purchased to support the curricular needs of the college. The emphasis in the selection of audiovisual titles is placed on titles which will be directly used by the faculty for instruction or in support of instruction. Multiple copies may be required for selected titles to accommodate student and faculty use.
      Emphasis in the purchasing of audiovisual materials should be in the following formats:
      • DVD – Digital Video Discs
      • Videorecordings (VHS) – if available in no other format
      • Compact discs

      Audiovisual materials are replaced or updated in the latest format

      In general, faculty members are encouraged to preview audiovisual materials prior to purchase. Selection criteria for audiovisual materials include:

      • Relevance to course work
      • Faculty recommendation
      • Price/cost
      • Favorable review in media literature
      • Demand by students
      • Accuracy of content
      • Authority of author/director/producer
      • Depth and scope of subject matter
      • Availability of closed captioning (dvds and vhs)

      (Telecourse purchasing, recording, and distribution is determined by Academic Affairs and faculty.)

    11. Electronic Resources
      As with other learning resources, the library purchases electronic resources to support the research needs of the curriculum. The dynamic nature of electronic resources is such that an ongoing review of available technologies and products must be made. In general, a movement toward web-based electronic resources will allow for the greatest accessibility by the greatest number of users both on and off campus. When appropriate, electronic resources, particularly with regard to reference materials, will be purchased in lieu of or in replacement of print titles.

      Electronic resources may include:
      • Periodical databases (full text preferable)
      • CD-ROM / DVD instructional / multimedia products
      • Electronic journals
      • Electronic newspapers
      • Online reference tools
      • Electronic books/texts

      Selection criteria for electronic resources include:

      • Relevance to course work
      • Faculty/student demand or recommendation
      • Interdisciplinary in nature
      • Cost (initial and ongoing/maintenance costs)
      • Years of coverage, if appropriate
      • Currency of coverage or information
      • Existence and permanence of backfiles
      • Ease of use (including such things as help screens, tutorials, menus, screen layout, various search modes, keyword, subject , and relevance search options, navigation)
      • Compatibility with campus network and operating systems
      • Vendor reputation
      • Customer support
      • Licensing requirements

      The cost of electronic resources should be recognized as a
      constraint. In general, electronic resources which meet the needs of
      the most number of students in the most number of disciplines will
      receive the highest priority. The Library will make every effort to enter
      into consortial arrangements in the purchasing of electronic
      resources. In general, electronic resources should be purchased with
      campus-wide licensing.

  7. Selection resources
    A number of standard reviewing sources are consulted by collection development liaisons in the selection of materials. The liaisons notify faculty of new materials in their area and share subject specific reviews/literature when appropriate.

    Selection resources include:
    • Library reviewing periodicals (e.g. Choice, Library Journal, Science Books & Films, American Libraries, Booklist, Computers in Libraries)
    • Subject periodicals (e.g. Chronicle of Higher Education)
    • Bibliographic references (e.g. Reference Sources for Small and Medium Size Libraries)
    • Publisher's literature and catalogs
    • Association publications
    • Book reviews (e.g. New York Times Book Reviews, BookWorld)
  8. Deselection/weeding
    It is necessary to remove materials from the collection in order to keep it as up-to-date as possible. Collection development liaisons will work with faculty in weeding subject areas of the collection.

    Criteria for discarding materials include:
    • Dated material or subject matter
    • Poor physical condition
    • Duplication
    • Faculty recommendation to remove material
    • Availability of more recent or relevant material or editions
    • Extremely low usage
    • Title ceased publication (periodical)
    • Cost of subscription increases (periodical, electronic or standing order)
    • Obsolete hardware platform (audiovisual or electronic resource)
  9. Gifts
    Gifts are accepted only when they add strength to the collection and when the donor places no significant limitations on housing, handling, or disposition of duplicate or unneeded items. Storage space and staff time will be considered in accepting gifts. The criteria used for adding gift titles to the collection are the same as above (Section V). The Library sends a written acknowledgement to donors specifying the number of items received, but does not assign a monetary value to the gift. The Library reserves the right to dispose of gifts through local sales, donation to non-profit organizations, or by simply discarding the items.
  10. Consortia
    The Carroll Community College Library takes advantage of a number of consortial arrangements in its efforts to achieve the greatest purchasing power and discounts. Currently, the Library is a member of the Maryland Community College Library Consortium (MCCLC), the Carroll Library Partnership (CLP) and CAPCON (associate member). Additional consortia membership will be investigated when appropriate and cost effective.
  11. Materials budget and apportionment of funds
    The Senior Director of the Library as chief collection development librarian apportions the materials budget among books, periodicals, serials, standing orders, electronic resources, media, and reference.
    While no formula is used to allocate funds by department or discipline, the allocation of funds by discipline is roughly based on:
    • The number of students enrolled in a program
    • Size and adequacy of the Library's current collection and resources
    • Actual use of library materials
    • Cost of materials
    • Research orientation/needs of the discipline
    • Distance learning requirements
    • Accreditation requirements
  12. Ordering materials
    The Technical Services staff orders, receives, invoices, and tracks all library materials. In order to receive the greatest discount and for purposes of preprocessing and cataloging, the majority of books should be ordered from the contracted book jobber (Baker and Taylor). If unavailable from the jobber, books may be ordered directly from the publisher. All periodicals are ordered through the contracted subscription service (Cox). Some periodicals, however, are obtained free of charge or are donated as gifts. Audiovisual titles are purchased from a commercial or educational supplier. Whenever possible, audiovisual materials are to be previewed prior to purchase or ordered on approval.

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