Collection Development Guidelines

Franklin University Nationwide Library is committed to acquiring the resources needed by the University’s students, faculty, and staff.

Purpose and Goals of Collection Development

Collection development is the process of building and maintaining the library's collection. The collection development policy establishes the guidelines used by the Franklin University Nationwide Library in the selection, acquisition, evaluation, and maintenance of information resources in print and non-print formats. The collection development policy reflects the philosophies stated in the mission statements of both Franklin University and the Franklin University Nationwide Library and communicates the guiding principles for the collection to faculty, students, staff, and other interested persons while providing guidance to those responsible for developing the collection.

The primary goal of Franklin University Nationwide Library's collection development efforts is to build a collection that supports the needs of the undergraduate and graduate programs at Franklin University. Because the library also recognizes its responsibility to respond to the research needs of the faculty and staff by providing access to specialized information sources, the library participates in and encourages cooperative collection development and resource sharing agreements with other libraries through OhioLINK and OCLC’s WorldCat Resource Sharing.

General Library Standards and Principles

The Franklin University Nationwide Library supports the principles and performance indicators outlined in the American Library Association’s Association of College and Research Libraries’ (ALA-ACRL) “Standards for Libraries in Higher Education”.

The Franklin University Nationwide Library supports the principles outlined in the American Library Association’s “Library Bill of Rights” and “Code of Ethics” and complies with the provisions of the “U.S. Copyright Law”.

Responsibility for Library Collection Development

Librarians serve as liaisons with each academic department and are responsible for developing the library collection in their assigned areas. Using qualitative and quantitative assessment measures, librarians are responsible for determining the strengths and weaknesses of their assigned areas. Faculty work with their assigned liaison to recommend resources for the collection that directly support existing, new, or re-designed curricula, or have a lasting value for faculty scholarly development.

Library Materials Funds

The library’s acquisition budget consists of four object codes. The funds from the four object codes are used to purchase materials for the collection, including book, serial, periodical, database and audio-visual formats, and are supplemented by funds from gifts and donations to the library.

Subject to availability, the library intends to allocate funds to each new program or course in addition to support for ongoing courses. Liaisons will work with faculty to acquire appropriate one-time purchase materials (books, media). Ongoing purchases (periodicals, databases) may also be considered on a case-by-case basis. 

Selection Process and Guidelines

Selection of material is a continuous process affected by changing curriculum, availability of new material, changes in access to content from existing electronic resources, changes in consortium driven resources, usage of existing resources, and other factors. As with all library purchases, the three primary criteria for selection are how it: 1) supports the curriculum, 2) improves the overall library collection, and 3) enhances access to information. In nearly all instances, if electronic access is available for the desired material this format will be chosen over print or analog versions because it enhances access to the information for the student population at Franklin University.

The general guidelines for selection of library materials include, but are not limited to;

  1. Relevance to the curriculum
  2. Lasting value of content and format
  3. Reputation of author, publisher or issuing entity
  4. Material style, clarity, quality
  5. Material features such as an index, table of contents, quality of medium, stability, compatibility with library systems, etc.
  6. Strength of existing collection in the same area
  7. Usage level of similar materials in same collection area
  8. Price—relative cost of material in relation to the budget and other needed material
  9. Currency of material
  10. Language
  11. Availability from other libraries through consortia
  12. Subject specific and standard library reviewing sources
  13. Current material is preferred over historical or retrospective

The general guidelines for items not selected include, but are not limited to;

  1. Outdated audio-visual formats
  2. Microforms
  3. Print material when it is already available electronically
  4. Items that have four or more copies available through consortia
  5. Items restricted by an accompanying license prohibiting distribution.

Collection Maintenance Process and Guidelines

De-selection (weeding) of the library collection is an ongoing process conducted by each library liaison throughout the year. Material that is outdated, inaccurate or damaged beyond reasonable repair will be removed from the collection. When possible, damaged material will be repaired and returned to the collection.

Ownership/Access Statement and Cooperative Collection Development

It is the goal of the library to maintain the most cost-effective collection of print and electronic materials and provide access to resources that best support the students, faculty and staff of Franklin University. The library will continue to work with consortia to provide access to information resources available through cooperative collection development. When electronic resources are determined to be critical to curriculum support, the library will attempt to purchase rather than lease this content. When purchase is not an option, the library will budget for continued access to the resource and if it becomes cost-prohibitive, will collaborate with faculty to evaluate alternate resources.

Challenges to Library Material

The resources acquired for the Franklin University Nationwide Library are selected according to the collection development guidelines, general criteria, and discipline-specific needs. Appearance of any resource does not mean that the library advocates or endorses the ideas found in that resource. Because Nationwide Library strives to provide collections that represent a diversity of viewpoints, library users may occasionally find materials owned by the library to be controversial or objectionable.

Resources in the Nationwide Library may be challenged by students, faculty, and staff of Franklin University. However, a challenge to a resource must be based on the failure of that resource to fall with the library's collection development guidelines,  including the commitment to intellectual freedom. To proceed, patrons may submit a written or emailed complaint to the Library Director, indicating their concerns with the material and how it fails to meet the guidelines. The complaint should also include full contact information for the concerned patron. The complaint will be reviewed by the Director and library staff in consultation with higher administrators as needed, and the complainant will receive a letter in return indicating the final decision.

Collection Development Policy Review Process

The Franklin University Nationwide Library will review the Collection Development Policy as needed and any substantive changes in the policy will be communicated to the Franklin University community through established methods. Ultimate responsibility for the collection development policy rests on the Library Director at Franklin University.

Last updated March 15, 2016

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