Revised June 2020, Dec 2020, May 2022
The Library exists to support the total program of the University. Therefore, the development of the Library collections should parallel the development of the University itself. Library materials will be acquired, as funds allow, in accordance with the following priorities*, ranked in descending order of importance:
a) historically strong collections linked to current research areas of the University; and b) the research needs of students and faculty when consonant with teaching programs;
a) form a basic collection in support of anticipated future programs of the University;
b) support interest in topics of current concern to members of the University community; c) augment the Library’s special collections
In order to prioritize expenditures and collecting practices, the following hierarchically-arranged objectives will be utilized:
Within the parameters identified above, the Library will attempt to include all subjects, viewpoints and methodologies.
* The Library subscribes to several e-book packages whose content is chosen by the vendor They include thousands of titles, some of which may not follow these selection criteria.
All materials purchased with funds allocated to the Library become Library property, available for the use of the entire University community. It is inappropriate to use Library funds to acquire materials for the exclusive use of any group or individual. Departmental or personal office collections should be purchased with the funds of the department or person using such collections.
In selecting materials to support undergraduate instruction, priority will be given to materials in English or in English translation, since that is the language of instruction and reading assignments in the College. Exceptions are made when the subject of study is other languages and literatures and when seminally important works are not available in English translation. Translations from English into other languages or from one foreign language into another will not be acquired unless significant scholarship is also represented.
Duplicate Copy Policy:
Budgetary and space constraints preclude the purchase of duplicate copies. Requests for duplication of a print title in e-format, or vice-versa, will be decided on a case-by-case basis, according to the following criteria (and general guidelines above) :
1. Print item is damaged, missing or lost
2. E-book is required for an on-line or remote/hybrid class; the library is responsive to the increased emphasis on online education
3. Faculty member or distance doctoral student has specific need for e- access to the title
4. Title is in high demand
As necessary for reasons of currency, space, and physical condition, Library collections may be reviewed for discard or alternate format (if available), following the same principles used in selecting materials for acquisition. (see weeding policy)
Library and Faculty Coordination with materials purchases
Since the faculty of the three schools are most directly involved with the teaching and research programs of the University, they are expected to have a key role in selecting materials supporting these programs. Structurally, it is the departmental library liaisons who coordinate this faculty role in all three schools. The Library also offers to meet with academic departments and with new faculty, both to inform them of strengths in our collection that seem to match their interests and to benefit from their perspectives on the collection.
All faculty are strongly encouraged to recommend specific titles for purchase. The Library staff will order titles ONLY upon faculty recommendations for purchase, as long as funds are available and the item requested falls within the guidelines of the acquisitions policy statement (below)*. The library collection will maintain its currency ONLY if faculty makes recommendations for purchase. How can the faculty help build our collection?
The Library will purchase monographs in print or electronic format following these criteria:
Criteria for purchasing books previously requested via ILL apply
In addition to faculty requests, the Library also has initiated several Demand- Driven and Evidence-based ebook programs, whereby ebooks are purchased based on direct usage by users.
*Acquisitions policy statement:
All faculty acquisition requests are reviewed by the subject liaison and/or the Director of Collections for relevance to the curriculum and probability of use. We ask that all faculty book purchase requests follow these guidelines for appropriateness:
The Library reserves the right to refuse purchase of a book that does not adhere to these guidelines.
It is critical that faculty or departments planning new academic programs be in conversation with appropriate subject librarians, the Director of Collections or the University Library Director about the adequacy of Library collections to support the proposed program and the costs of developing and maintaining such collections. Budget proposals in support of new programs will include funding for Library collections.
**Procedures for faculty to request purchase of books may be found here
Students seeking to have items added to the collection may submit requests. These requests will be given serious consideration whenever the material requested meets the guidelines of this policy. Faculty input may be requested before the item is purchased. Requests from students working remotely will be given the highest priority.
The Library does not purchase the materials a student needs for a thesis or dissertation unless the materials fall with the guidelines of this policy. For other materials, students doing advanced research should rely on Interlibrary Loan or make other appropriate arrangements; the Library will help students to locate off-campus resources.
Purchase of books for the Methodist Library:
This policy is based on the necessity of book access for Methodist researchers on the premises, while being mindful of the limited Library materials budget and general collection policy which discourages duplicate purchases.
In 2019, the Library materials book budget was reorganized into these disciplinary areas:
Budget allocations in each subject area for book purchases are fluid and are based on past spending, upcoming new majors, and the balance between monograph and periodical literature in each field. Allocations may be adjusted throughout the year and with each new fiscal year. Analysis of spending may predicate the need for communication with relevant faculty to request more involvement with purchase requests.
Other budget lines were created for electronic and print journals for the same disciplines above, and additionally:
· General magazines and journals
Electronic Resources budget lines include:
· Electronic resources and databases
· Streaming Media
Books will be purchased in the format requested by the faculty member or selector. If no format is specified, format will be chosen based on cost, with ebook being the preferred format. “Single user option” will be purchased unless “unlimited user” is available at the same or similar cost, or the title is required reading for a class.
If there is a significant cost difference between the preferred and other format, the library will notify the requestor. Decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis.
In the case of titles that have gone through several editions, the latest edition will automatically be acquired unless an earlier edition is specified because of historical value or because it contains material not included in the later edition.
When a book requested is found to be out-of-print, the Library will notify the requestor. Although the Library will make a reasonable effort to acquire the title from a book dealer, it can never be anticipated that an out-of-print work will become available at an affordable price or in a specified length of time. Reprint editions may be acquired when available.
Selection of individual journal titles is made in consultation with academic departments. Individual subscriptions are purchased when current content is required, and is not available in any database package
The selection of new journal titles, as well as the cancellation of current journal titles, will be made with the following criteria in mind:
1. Availability of the journal on existing aggregated databases, with consideration of possible embargo periods.
2. Importance of current content in light of embargo periods
3. Relevance of journal to multiple discipline areas
4. Usage and cost per use over a three year period
Based on the teaching programs of the University, the Library selects appropriate materials to be included in the Documents Depository. United States, United Nations and New Jersey documents not accessible in this way may be ordered individually within the guidelines of this statement. Online access is preferable.
Sources available in electronic format are selected primarily on the basis of their content, applicability to current and future programs, and added research potential. The Library will consider ease and breadth of access, as well as stability of format, overlap with existing electronic resources, and cost when purchasing electronic resources.
New resources are selected upon consultation with relevant faculty.
Databases are acquired based on recommendations from and evaluations by librarians and faculty, They are typically offered either as a one-time purchase of archival content or as an annual subscription with content often added and updated on an ongoing basis . Databases which meet the research needs of multiple departments or disciplines are preferred. Given that the financial commitment required to license or purchase such databases is considerable, the Library usually requests a “trial” from the vendor for the librarians and faculty to review as part of the evaluation process.
Video and Other Audio-Visual Media
The Library maintains a small audio music collection on CD. The Library maintains a video collection to support classroom instruction. These materials are cataloged in the Library’s online catalog. The Library acquires materials in this area at faculty request. The Library also subscribes to several streaming video services. Electronic resources selection policies apply to these subscriptions.
See media policy for streaming media collection policies and here
Materials received as gifts will be evaluated by the same criteria as materials purchased. Since all items generate processing, storage, and access costs, the Library requires that gift materials enhance the academic value of the collection. Gifts should be given with the understanding that items that the Library staff assesses as unneeded (e.g., duplicate copies, materials inappropriate for an academic library, materials outside the scope of the collection) will be disposed of by sale, exchange, donation, or discard.
Acceptance of gifts is determined by availability of staff for processing such gifts . As of May 2022, no gifts are being accepted.
When titles in the collection are reported missing or lost, those requested for teaching or research will be replaced according to the same criteria as titles being evaluated for weeding (see weeding policy). Titles for which there is not an immediate need may not be replaced for a period, since it has been the experience of the Library that many titles reported lost are in fact found within a predictable period of time. When an inventory of the collection is taken, missing items in demand will be replaced if possible, according to weeding criteria. Missing or lost titles may always be requested through Interlibrary Loan.
Although students are expected to provide their own textbooks, the Library will occasionally purchase such material at the recommendation of, or in consultation with, faculty. Textbooks may be ordered (or acquired) for the collections at the discretion of individual selectors in consultation with faculty. Textbooks acquired by the library are subject to the same policies that govern addition and retention of all other types of books.