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Collections Development Policy -- Mount Allison University Libraries

Collections Development Policy - Building


The approach to collecting is one of cooperative work and shared responsibility.  Librarians are assigned specific subject areas for which they assume primary responsibility.  Faculty, students and staff are encouraged and expected to participate in the process by ordering titles and recommending areas for development.

An important issue now, and likely for some decades to come, is the question of balancing the provision of access to externally held resources, and the acquisition of materials to be housed on-site.  The Library will be constantly monitoring and assessing the various new and old media, in order to evaluate the best way to build collections which have a stable base, but at the same time, are sufficiently flexible to respond to the requirements of the curriculum and expectations of students accustomed to working with constantly changing technology.

While considerations of format and methods of delivery are important, it must be remembered that the subject content of the collection is of primary importance.

Collection Building - Faculty Members

All members of the teaching faculty have an important role to play in the development of Library collections which provide for the scholarly needs of their students.  Through the recommendation of specific titles and discussion of areas of development, they contribute their subject expertise and breadth of knowledge to the collection building process.

While all members of faculty are encouraged to deal directly with the Library if they so choose, academic departments may wish to maintain Library co-ordinators who will act as liaison with the Library, encourage colleagues to submit requests for materials and discuss implications of Library policy with department colleagues.

Procedures for ordering materials (Appendix D) will be distributed each September.

Collection Building - Students

Collection development is directly influenced by reference and other public service work done with students.  It is during the provision of such services that Librarians become familiar with their scholarly needs, and are able to respond through searching out and acquiring materials which will respond to those requirements.

We will also purchase material requested by students if the titles fall within our subject collection guidelines and meet the stated criteria.

In addition, we have for some time, been able to respond to the need for titles which focus on issues of modern lifestyles, and other subjects which are not directly part of the curriculum, through a fund specifically for this purpose.  The fund is built through the annual sale of Library discards and duplicates.

Collection Building - Librarians

Librarians will work with individuals and departments to ensure a consistent and systematic building of each segment of the collection.  In addition to recommending titles, the Librarians will be responsible for maintaining contact with the members of the community who make use of that part of the collection, working with them toward the goal of building collections which respond to the scholarly needs of students.  They are responsible for the analysis of these subject collections and for ensuring that needed material is provided in the formats most appropriate to the subject.

Subject responsibilities of Librarians will be outlined and distributed to the community each year.  The Librarians will keep abreast of developments in the curriculum through participation in the work of the Academic Matters Committee and other committees of Senate.  In addition, the Librarians will maintain a file of current departmental handbooks, course outlines and assignments as a method of keeping informed of developments within courses.

The Collections Development Librarian co-ordinates the efforts of the Librarians involved in collections work and is responsible for monitoring the effectiveness of the processes and criteria presented in this statement.  In addition, this position is responsible for maintaining an awareness of the interdisciplinary relationships within the collection.  In conjunction with the Collections Librarians and the Head of Technical Services, the Collections Development Librarian will make recommendations concerning the annual allocation of the materials budget.