Responsibility for Collection Development

The responsibility for developing the collection is shared among faculty and librarians. The Library Director administers the budget for library materials, but as subject specialists and those most closely associated with the curriculum, the faculty are the primary selectors of resources purchased for the collection and take the lead in assuring curricular support. Librarians review orders to keep abreast of faculty interests and curricular needs. In the case of non-book materials librarians consider the impact of requested materials on facilities, such as needed hardware and archival quality of materials.

Librarians also work to balance the collection, to see that all major points of view are represented. In addition, the librarians survey the collection overall, to look for areas which might not be represented, or which, while not directly in the curriculum, are necessary to a college library.

To facilitate communication between the library and faculty, the library assigns each department or program a library liaison. This librarian works closely with faculty of the department to develop the collection in the appropriate subject areas. The liaison librarian explains library policy and procedure, alerts faculty to new resources, and is the conduit for material orders, questions, and comments. Faculty are encouraged to share their research needs and interests and to alert librarians to upcoming changes in the curriculum. This partnership also takes on joint tasks, such as developing departmental collection development guidelines, evaluating journal collections, and deselecting materials that have outlived usefulness.