Collection Development Policy


This collection development policy is a statement of the principles and guidelines used by the Midway College libraries in the selection, acquisition, evaluation and maintenance of all library materials. It will be used both in providing consistency among those responsible for developing the collection and in communicating the library’s policies to faculty, students, staff and the administration. It is understood that as the programs and other information needs of the college change, so too the collection development will change to meet these needs.


The acquisition and maintenance of the library’s materials collection is a primary function of the library’s mission. Collection development refers to the process of building and maintaining the library’s entire materials collection, in both print and non-print formats. The collection development process includes the formulation of policy and procedures, budget allocation, needs assessment, selection, collection maintenance and evaluation, and resource sharing.

The primary goal of the library’s collection development efforts is to build a collection that supports the needs of the courses and programs at Midway College. The library also recognizes its responsibility to respond to the research needs of the faculty. With the understanding that no library can supply materials to satisfy all of the needs of its users, the Little Memorial Library will encourage cooperative resource sharing agreements with other libraries in the region and throughout the state.


The development and maintenance of library collections is a joint responsibility of the college faculty and the professional staff of the library. Final authority for the selection of materials rests with the Director of Library services.

It is expected that the teaching faculty will work with the library professional staff to select appropriate library materials. The librarians depend upon faculty expertise to provide assistance in selecting titles for acquisition. All requests for materials are reviewed for their adherence to the selection guidelines and must be approved by the librarians. Student and staff requests for acquisition of materials are also welcomed and encouraged and will be reviewed by the same standards as are requests from other sources.


It is responsibility of the Director of Library Services to allocate the materials budget in such a way as to fulfill the library’s collection development goals. Funds remaining after the payment of online database subscriptions, standing orders and serials subscriptions are divided between the academic programs in the following priorities: (1) faculty requests, (2) programs under review for accreditation, (3) new degree programs, and (4) balancing of collection by the librarians.


Midway College recognizes that today’s libraries are not simply repositories for books and other print materials. In the midst of the information age, learning occurs most effectively when all types of media—electronic databases and periodicals, videodiscs, print periodicals, computer software, books—are available and used. All of these materials are considered potential resources to be considered for acquisition into an organized and balance collection. The selection of materials is a continuous process affected by the changing curriculum content and needs and the availability of new materials. The general policy for selection applies equally to all types of materials being considered for library acquisitions.

General Policies for Selecting Materials

Standards and Ethical and Legal Principles
Midway College supports the statements on collection development contained within the Standards for College Libraries.

The principles of intellectual freedom as outlined in the Library Bill of Rights of the American Library Association (see appendix) shall be adhered to in the selection of library materials. It is the responsibility of the librarians and all faculty selecting materials to ensure that all points of view are represented in the collection and that materials are not removed from the collection because of partisan and/or doctrinal disapproval.

The library does not add or withdraw, at the request of any individual or group, material which as been chosen or excluded on the basis of stated selection criteria. An individual or group questioning the appropriateness of material within the collection will be referred to the Director of Library Services.

The American Library Association’s Code of Ethics states that “Librarians must protect each user’s right to privacy with respect to information sought, received, and materials consulted, borrowed, or acquired.” (ALA Policy Manual 54.15, Code of Ethics, point 3) In addition, the library adheres to ALA’s “Policy on Confidentiality of Library Records” and “Confidentiality of Library Users.”

Midway College complies fully with all of the provisions of the Copyright Revision Act of 1976 and its amendments. The library strongly supports the Fair Use section of the act which permits and protects citizen’s rights to reproduce and make other uses of copyrighted works for the purposes of teaching, scholarship and research.

Criteria for Selection of All Materials
1. Relevancy to the curriculum and appropriateness to the clientele
2. Timeliness of material
3. Reputation of the author, issuing body, and/or publisher
4. Price/relative cost of material in relation to the budget and other available material
5. Appropriateness of the medium
6. Strength of present holdings in the same or similar subject
7. Demand; frequency of ILL requests for material on the same or similar subject

The library generally will not purchase the following categories of materials: vanity press materials, textbooks adopted by the college curriculum, titles in foreign languages not in the college curriculum, titles in certain subject areas not serving the library audience, and materials requested by a program or faculty to be used exclusively by that program or faculty.

Policies for Selection of Specific Types of Materials

Duplicates are not normally purchased. Duplicate materials will be added to the collection if warranted by heavy usage of copies already held by the library.

The library will not buy fiction that is anticipated to have only short term interest among
readers, but will attempt to select established literary works and new works of promise in the
literary field; especially those works which would support literature course offerings. As part
of the selection process, librarians will evaluate the work in terms of the author’s earlier
writings and current reader interest.

The library does provide a small selection of popular fiction and nonfiction through a lease program.

Foreign Language Materials
Except for dictionaries, the library collects primarily English-language materials.
Literature and language materials needed to support the curriculum are collected as needed.

Gifts to the library are encouraged. Gifts of cash and gifts in kind are accepted at the discretion
of the Director of Library Services with the understanding that there are no conditions attached
to their disposition. Only those materials which prove to be in good physical condition and
which conform to the collection guidelines are actually added to the collection. All others are
disposed of by sale, exchange, donation or discarded. The library will only acknowledge with
a gift letter those items that have been accepted. The library will acknowledge the number of
items donated, but cannot legally provide an appraisal or estimate of the value of the donated
material. The appraisal of gifts for tax purposes is the responsibility of the donor.

Non-print Materials
Non-print materials are considered as any research and/or instructional materials whether
electronic products, videodiscs, compact discs, etc. Requests for non-print
materials will be evaluated on the same basis as are book materials.

Hardbound monographs will normally be selected over paperbacks. Paperback monographs
for the regular collection will only be acquired when hardback editions are not available or
when there is a significant price difference between the hardback and paperback editions.
When making a choice of a paperback over hardback the long-term value and expected use of
the title should be considered.

Textbooks and Lab Manuals
The purpose of the library collection is to supplement and expand the curriculum. Textbooks that are selected and adopted for class use will not knowingly be purchased for the library collection. Exceptions are those which have earned a reputation as “classics” in their fields or when a textbook is the only or best sources of information on a particular topic. Textbooks and laboratory manuals will be evaluated and added to the collection based on the guidelines stated above. It is the responsibility of the students to purchase their textbooks.

Selection and Evaluation Tools

Subject-specific and standard library reviewing sources will be used when making selection decisions:
1. Choice reviews
2. Professional library journals
3. Subject bibliographies
4. Reviews in subject-specific scholarly journals

In addition, librarians will use faculty expertise as a resource for selection and evaluation of the collection.



Archives are those records of an organization or institution that have been selected for preservation because they possess enduring value. The Midway College Archives houses materials that are of enduring value to Midway College. The archives is under the supervision of the Director of Library Services or her designee. It is the responsibility of the individual administrative offices to decide which materials are to be archived and the responsibility of the library to catalog them.


Instructors choose the materials for course reserves and the loan period for student use. Formats can include, but are not limited to, books, photocopies of journal articles and class notes, videotapes and CDs. Items may be from the library collection or be the instructor’s personal property.
“Fair use” will be observed in the photocopying of copyrighted material. In general, this means one copy of an article, a chapter of a book, a short story or poem, a map or a chart. Each instructor is responsible for obtaining copyright permission for multiple copies or retaining photocopied copyrighted material on reserve for more than one semester.
The library is not responsible for the loss or damage to personal property placed on reserve. Students can only be billed for lost/damaged library property.


The serials collection supports the courses and programs offered by Midway College. Serials are publications issued in successive parts bearing numeric or chronological designations and intended to be continued indefinitely. Serials are issued in print, non-print and electronic formats. All formats will be considered in the library’s purchase and/or access decisions. The selection of serials requires a continuing commitment to the base cost of the title, including maintenance, equipment and storage space. Items in the serials collection normally do not circulate. The serials collection is reviewed by the librarians with faculty input.

Librarians consider the following priorities in the selection and deselection process:
1. Curriculum support for students
2. Undergraduate research
3. Graduate research in degrees offered by the college
3. Relevance to the mission of the library

General Selection Criteria

Serials will be selected and deselected based on how well they support the
continuing information needs of the college community. Factors to be considered are;
1. Support of academic programs
2. Cost
3. Accessibility within resource sharing services
4. Full-text availability through electronic means
5. Usage or projected usage
6. Indexing and abstracting in sources accessible to library users
7. Demand for title in document delivery requests

The library has established an annual serials review procedure at which time all decisions for cancellations and additions of serials subscriptions are made and appropriate formats are reviewed.



Weeding is the withdrawal of damaged or obsolete materials from the library’s
collection; an integral part of collection development and maintenance. Librarians are responsible for conducting an ongoing weeding effort and for maintaining the quality of the entire collection. Faculty will be expected to assist in the deselection process in their respective disciplines. The following general guidelines are applied in the deselection process:

1. Superseded editions are routinely deselected from the collection.
2. Duplicate copies of seldom used titles are deselected.
3. Materials which cannot be repaired or rebound or for which the cost of preservation
exceeds the usefulness of the information contained are deselected.
4. The currency of information is extremely important in some fields such as
health sciences, technology and business. Older materials must be
regularly deselected so that outdated or inaccurate information is


The library is committed to building collections that meet the needs of the curriculum at Midway College. However, the library recognized the fact that it cannot realistically contain within its collection all of the information necessary to satisfy the needs of all of its users. Therefore, the library will supplement its collection through resource sharing and interlibrary loan services to serve the research needs of the faculty, students and staff. Resource sharing encouraged free exchange of materials among the participating libraries to the mutual benefit of all.


The Collection Development Policy will be continually reviewed by the library staff. Any changes in policy will be submitted to the Educational Resources Committee for approval.

Revised September 2011