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last updated: 4/20/2012

Collection Development Policies - Core Collection

Core Collection


  1. Introduction
    1. Purpose of the policy statement
      The Undergraduate Services Core Collection exists to support the undergraduate curriculum, and is particularly geared to students enrolled in 100-200 level courses. Selection for this collection provides for the information needs as well as the cultural interests of undergraduate students. The collection is designed to support introductory research in almost every discipline.

    2. Audience
      The Undergraduate Collection originated in 1962 when materials were acquired from various used bookstores, gifts and direct purchases to establish the Undergraduate Library collection. According to the collection development policy in place in the 1980's:

    3. Description of institution/department and clientele
      "The Undergraduate Collection does not stand alone on the IU-Bloomington campus. It is part of a complex library system. Consequently for purposes of collection development the UGL collection is considered in the context of its location and the relationship to the Research Collections and the campus libraries."

    4. Brief overview of the collection
      Following a collection review in 1994, staff in UGL worked to implement the recommendations that included:

      "Circulating Collection Recommendations: Eliminate the concept of a collection for undergraduates in its present configuration. However, the committee recognizes the need to provide ready access to basic works and heavily used titles. It recommends that the IU-B Libraries create a core collection of heavily used materials needed for the support of the instructional mission of the University."

      1. History of the collection
        The current Core Collection emerged from a massive review of the Undergraduate Library Collection that spanned three years. Each of the approximately 110,000 volumes in the collection was reviewed by staff for suitability in regards to the undergraduate curriculum, circulation statistics, and condition. Material that was not retained was either transferred or withdrawn in accordance with IUB retention policies at the time.

        The Core Collection is small, approximately 30,000 volumes, and materials are easy for undergraduates to find. The loan period is short to keep materials circulating and readily available to a wider audience. Core Collection materials cannot be borrowed through interlibrary loan. Our goal is to keep the collection at its current size by reviewing the collection annually and transferring unused materials to other collections. The collection is geared toward immediate use of current, high-interest titles, and out-dated, little-used material will be removed.

      2. Collection strengths and weaknesses
        In addition to the circulating Core Collection, Undergraduate Services maintains a Career Reference collection, a Reference collection, a software reference collection, and a browsing collection. The Career Reference collection is designed to assist users with their investigation of educational and career options. It contains college directories, study guides for the GRE, GMAT, TOEFL and other exams, financial aid and scholarship information, guides to studying or working abroad and resume and interview resources.

        The Reference collection is a basic reference collection designed to support the reference needs of primarily freshmen and sophomores. Because of the proximity of the Research Collections Reference Collection only heavily used materials are collected.

      3. Subject areas emphasized or deemphasized
        The browsing collection is a small collection of circulating popular fiction.

        The software reference collection supports the popular applications on the computers in the Information Commons.

      4. Collection locations
        The Core Collections are located on the first and second floors of the Main Library West Tower. The reference, career reference and browsing collections located on the first floor of the West Tower are available 24/7.
  2. Scope of Coverage
    1. Languages collected and excluded
      -English only, exceptions being foreign language dictionaries and language instruction texts.

    2. Geographical areas covered and excluded
      -All geographical areas are covered

    3. Chronological periods covered and excluded
      -All time periods are collected

    4. Dates of publication of materials collected; current vs. retrospective coverage
      -Generally more current material is selected, however a number of "classics" in all disciplines are retained

    5. Formats collected and excluded
      -We collect electronic and print monographs for the circulating Core Collection. Fund 97 also purchases or contributes to the cost of databases that support the information needs of the beginning researcher and are multi-disciplinary. Print journals and magazines are not collected.
      -Materials that require specific equipment such as microform and software are not included in the Core Collection.
  3. Collecting responsibility
    The Head of the Information Commons Undergraduate Services Department and the Core Collections Librarian are primarily responsible for Core collection selection. We also purchase material requested by faculty and students if appropriate for the collection. Other ICUS librarians and Reference Assistants make suggestions. SALC librarians will suggest purchases that are more appropriate for the Core Collection than their research collections.

  4. Related collections
    The materials in the Core Collection support the instructional and recreational needs of first and second year students. Because the collection is small it can not support all research needs. Because of this users of the Core Collection also use the other collections of the IU-B Libraries.

  5. Principal sources of supply and major selection tools
    The library staff uses the following selection tools, with additional sources as needed: Choice, Library Journal, Booklist, Publisher's Weekly, New York Times Book Review, New York Review of Books, and publishers catalogs. The majority of our books are ordered from Ingram on a shelf ready plan. Ingram also has a variety of selection and collection development tools on their web site. Databases are selected from vendor blurbs and demonstrations and are evaluated through trial periods.

  6. Preservation
    1. Criteria for selection for preservation and/or mass deacidification
      The Core Collection currently does not participate in the mass de-acidification project nor does there appear to be a need to. Heavily used materials that are out-of-print are sent to the bindery.

    2. High-priority areas of the collection for preservation review and treatment
      There are no high-priority areas for preservation and review.
  7. Selection criteria for ALF
    -The initial weed of the Core Collection to reduce from 32,000 to 15,000 volumes will entail identifying materials that have not circulated in the past 4 years.

    -If the material is duplicated in the Research Collections stacks, or in a campus library, the material will be sent to ALF.

    -If the material is of a consumable nature (ie. Test books, computer manuals, career guides, old textbooks) and is outdated, the material will be removed for discard.

    -Material in poor physical shape that is a duplicate, without value as an artifact, will be withdrawn. (ie. UGS Core has many copies of paperback books used for classes.)

  8. Digital projects
    At this time there is no need to digitize any materials from the Core Collection.
  9. Other resources and libraries
    Patrons in the Information Commons/ Undergraduate Services are referred most often to other libraries on the IU-B campus including the Career Development Center Library. The Monroe County Public Library is also often used as a resource.

    Consortial agreements
    There are no consortial agreements related to the Core Collection.



Core Collection Home Page <Revised December 2004


last updated: 4/20/2012