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Policies at the Library

Policies of the Henry Whittemore Library

Collection Development

This policy statement is to serve as a guideline in the selection of library materials for the Henry Whittemore Library. As the library environment is moving toward digital media licensing, accessing and preservation, we have made sincere attempts to address electronic resources collection guidelines. The Library acquires information resources in a variety of formats (e.g. books, journals, newspapers and multi-media). The Library accesses information through direct licensing of research databases with academic publishers, societies, database aggregators and consortia of electronic information resources. The trends of e-resources have been in acquiring journals found in the aggregated format of a database, unless a journal is not available through the aggregated database format. General Selection Criteria for local development of information sources follows similar priorities in the Collection Development Policy.

General Priorities

Library materials are acquired with the following priorities in mind:

1. To support the current teaching program of the University, noting that the primary role of the institution is undergraduate education in diverse academic disciplines as well as career oriented professional programs in undergraduate programs

2. To collect with emphasis in those areas of the collection wherein new graduate and undergraduate programs have been developed and to meet appropriate criteria for accreditation

3. To meet the general information, cultural and recreational needs of the academic and administrative community of the University

Collection in subject areas wherein no courses are offered is more selective and is limited to basic reference materials, selected important works, historical surveys, important bibliographies and a few major periodicals in the field


The mission of the Henry Whittemore Library is to acquire, organize, preserve and interpret the collections and resources needed to support the academic programs and information and research needs of the university; to develop and maintain the services necessary for access to and effective use of information and materials in appropriate formats for on and off-site users; to publicize and provide education and instruction to students and faculty in the use of library resources and to promote information literacy; to evaluate and provide services and resources responsive to user needs; and an atmosphere that supports academic excellence. The Library also provides materials for cultural and recreational enhancement and maintains collections perpetuating the heritage of the college through the preservation of its publications, documents, historical records, and significant artifacts.

General criteria for local development of electronic information resources:

Priority for purchases will be given to full text scholarly contents.

Information resources will be purchased in a single format, with the digital format preferred. The digital format allows multiple simultaneous users to access the resource without the limitations of operating hours and location.

To optimize existing financial resources, FSU library collaborates with the state-wide, publically supported academic library group purchasing agreements through, MCCLPHEI, Inc. FSU library also joined WALDO consortium to leverage electronic database purchasing membership in the New England region. Additional access is provided through memberships in other statewide consortiums.

We will maximize use of the online information environment, guiding students and researchers in the use of this rich and rapidly developing world of information.

Renewal and evaluation of information resources:

All subscription and licensed resources will be evaluated based on relevance to the FSU including curriculum, overall usage statistics, cost per search, and total cost of access. As part of evaluation, we will also consult with faculty to determine the importance, current usage, and relevance of resources for teaching and research.

Collection Development Tools:

• CHOICE reviews

• Reviews in scholarly journals

• Reviews in library and book trade journals

• Published bibliographies

• Lists of recommended readings for the college's courses

• Publishers' catalogs

• Scholarly journals and societies websites

Intellectual Freedom

The American Library Association's "Library Bill of Rights" and the "Intellectual Freedom Principles for Academic Libraries" as adopted by the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) will be supported by the Library.  

Request to Purchase

Acquisitions & Serials Librarian administers collection development for all formats of the library materials while the decisions are made jointly by the academic department faculty liaison (See #1). Starting in the academic year, 2012-13, the Library will implement the librarian liaison program (aka, subject specialist librarian) for each academic department (See #2) to better coordinate academic department’s needs.

Request to Purchase and Making Purchasing Recommendations

The library also accepts recommendations from Framingham State University students, faculty and staff for the library materials purchases, as well as recommendations for new subscriptions to journals and newspapers. Recommendations will be weighed on the basis of the principles identified in the Library Collection Development Policy.

Submitting Requests

Faculty may submit requests for purchase to their library liaison using CHOICE cards, On Order Form or On Order book request cards, available by contacting the Acquisitions Department. The library also accepts e-mail, lists, brochures, and publishers' catalogs that provide adequate bibliographic information for verifying requests. The Minuteman Library Online catalog should be checked before submitting a request to verify that the item is not already held by the library.

Acquisitions: Order Status Notification

Records for on-order materials will be sent out by the Acquisitions Department Library Assistant upon placing an order. Once the materials have been received, technical processing is completed and is available in the library; they are also listed through the Massachusetts Library and Information Network (MLIN). Those who place an order will be receiving the final notification card or information by email. This is a simple acknowledgement of the acquisition lifecycles completion.  

Recent Acquisitions Announcement – What’s New

Recent Acquisition information will be included under the What’s New section on the Library Website will be updated with library materials added to our main collection on a month basis.

Guidelines for Donations including Gifts

Gifts/donations Guidelines - In addition to purchasing materials, the library does accept donated resources. When you receive an inquiry concerning donations, before accepting donation and gift items, please review our gift policy and request a list of bibliographic information that includes author, title, publisher and the publication date. Although it may not always be possible, bibliographic information is preferred for each donated item or series of items. In addition, please clarify any shipping or delivery arrangements related to the delivery of donated items. Find out who the donor is. Once the Acquisitions Department receives bibliographic information, we will get in touch with the donor.

Please note that we do not wish to get the following materials: Old editions of textbooks. Old copies of popular magazines, Paperback fiction and Newspapers

Once we receive the donated items based on our initial evaluation, the Acquisitions Department will review the materials to decide whether to add them to the collection. Donated materials are added only if they meet the same criteria as materials purchased directly. The Acquisition Department will determine housing and circulation policies for gifts and will provide a list of titles for tax purposes, or authorize that the materials on the list provided were received as donations/gifts.

Guidelines for Weeding the Print Collection

• Availability: Is the item available electronically?

• Physical Condition: Does it need to be replaced or discarded?

• Publication Year: Is the item outdated? If it is, does it have historical value?

• Edition superseded: Is there a more recent edition?

• Content Accuracy: Does it represent the most advanced state of knowledge in the field? If it doesn't, is it of historical value?

• Relevance: Is it relevant to FSU curriculum, faculty research, authored by FSU personnel or alumni, etc.

Note: Selection guidelines for the Curriculum Library and the Special Collections are excluded in this document, as they operate independently.