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Library Policies: Collection Development Policy

The Purpose of the Collection

The primary purpose of the collection of the College of DuPage Library is to support the academic programs of the College with print, audiovisual, periodical and electronic resources. The library’s collection also serves the professional growth and development needs of the College’s faculty and staff. In addition, the collection will supplement other sources to address the cultural and enrichment interests of students, staff, faculty and the community as a whole.

The Purpose of the Collection Development Policy

This policy is designed to guide the systematic development and management of the College of DuPage Library’s collection of print, audiovisual, and electronic materials. Rising costs, increases in publishing output, and increasing demand for information in a wide variety of formats require careful materials selection based on an understanding of the mission of the Library and the College. The collection must be systematically shaped and developed in order to make the best use of our financial resources. This policy is intended to present collection development and information access program guidelines to meet the following objectives:
To assist librarians in selecting current, diverse, balanced collections of materials to support the instructional and institutional needs of students, faculty and staff in support of the stated purpose of the collection To provide a basis for the consideration and incorporation of faculty suggestions as part of collection development and management To serve both traditional and distance education students and faculty by supplying integrated access to collections of materials in all appropriate formats in the most cost-effective manner To assist with short-range and long-range fiscal planning

College Mission

The mission of College of DuPage is to be a center for excellence in teaching, learning, and cultural experiences by providing accessible, affordable, and comprehensive education.

Mission of the College of DuPage Library

Library Mission Statement

The College of DuPage Library’s mission is to be an exemplary academic library that supports the educational goals and purposes of the college. The Library is dedicated to providing instruction and access to resources and services that support the academic program and the general information needs, diverse cultural interests, intellectual development, and professional growth of the entire college community.


  • Educate the college community in accessing and evaluating information, library research skills, and critical thinking through a comprehensive information literacy program.
  • Select, maintain and provide access to a collection of materials chosen for their quality, currency and relevance to the academic curriculum and the educational needs of the community.
  • Provide an environment conducive to individual and collaborative research and study.
  • Deliver reference and information services that support the college's academic curriculum and programs and promote lifelong learning throughout the college community.
  • Recruit and support through continuing professional education a library staff whose knowledge, skills and abilities evolve with the changing landscape of information and education.
  • Endorse the Library Bill of Rights and the Code of Ethics as set forth by the American Library Association, affirming the library as a forum for information and ideas.

Revised: January, 2013

Collection Development Responsibility

Role of the Reference Librarians

Collection development, including materials selection and deselection, is the responsibility of each full-time faculty librarian serving as Library liaison to specific departments or disciplines at the College of DuPage.

This includes responsibility for:

  • Long and short range planning for developing the collection.
  • Evaluation of collections and needs.
  • Regular communication with the Library’s Technical Services staff.
  • Active liaison with their faculty and administrators.
  • Judicious and timely expenditure of their materials budget within the budget set by the Library administration.

Role of the Dean and Associate Dean

The Dean and Associate Dean are responsible for overseeing the overall growth and development of the collection, the allocation of the materials budget, and the expenditure of funds under the policies, procedures and guidelines developed by the library faculty in conjunction with the administration. The Dean and Associate Dean are responsible for final approval of the collection development policies and expenditures.

Role of the Technical Services Librarian

The Technical Services Librarian monitors the collection development budget including book, continuation, audiovisual, periodical, and electronic resources funds, maintains vendor relations, and regularly updates librarians on budget activities and status.

Criteria for Selection of Materials

Librarians select print and non-print materials using a number of selection tools. These include:

  • Professional journals.
  • Popular reviewing sources.
  • Vendors’ notifications
  • Standard bibliographies.
  • Publishers’ and producers’ catalogs.
  • Requests submitted by the community of Library users.
    Particular attention is paid to faculty requests for materials to support the development and delivery of the College’s instructional programs.

The Library also accepts gift materials (see Donation Policy for details)

When selecting materials, an overriding consideration is appropriateness for community college use. Most materials should be written or produced on a level that the average community college student can use or benefit from, or at a level that students in a particular field are expected to attain.

Other considerations may be:

  • Reputation of the author, issuing body, and/or publisher
  • Presentation: style, clarity, reading level
  • Aesthetic considerations: literary, artistic, or social value; appeal to the imagination, senses, or intellect
  • Special features: detailed, logical, accurate index; bibliography; footnotes; pictorial representations
  • Physical and technical quality of paper, typography, and design; physical size; binding; durability; when there is an option of paper, hard copy, or electronic format, the selector may choose the format based on expected use, lasting value of content, cost differential, and quality of binding.
  • Depth of current holdings in the same or similar subject
  • Demand as determined by circulation or frequency of interlibrary loan requests for material on the same or similar subject
  • Cost of material relative to the budget and other available material
  • Accessibility in online formats
  • Ease of access or user-friendliness
  • Usage expectation
  • Need for information in format type other than print

Considerations for Specific Types and Formats of Materials Collected


Books/monographs are collected in hardbound, paperback or audio editions based on the librarian’s judgment as to which format is suitable. The Library supports the research needs of faculty pursuing advanced degrees primarily through the use of interlibrary loan for items not in our collection.

Ebooks will be considered when they provide the most current and/or cost-effective format or when they provide collections in support of distance education courses and programs.

Reference materials including periodical indexes and electronic reference

Reference works are judged for inclusion in the Reference collection on the basis of the recommendation of the subject librarians (taking into consideration any faculty input), timeliness, cost, suitability of item for the community college library (i.e. level of item written for community college or undergraduate college student), ability to fill a need in the existing reference collection, plus review source recommendations and inclusion in end-of-year “Best Reference Title” lists.


The Library licenses access to electronic resources including article and digital image collections. Selection decisions are made on the basis of content, utility, ease-of-use, potential for off-campus access, subject specialist recommendations, evaluations from trials, collection overlap, affordability, and usage. Databases that are offered by consortial arrangement may be preferred when they offer the best pricing structure. The Collection Development Committee monitors the budget for databases and makes recommendations to the faculty librarians as a group for purchase and deletion based on the listed selection criteria.

Popular Fiction and Nonfiction

Selection criteria include appeal to the college community and media coverage of the author or title. Particular attention is paid to best-selling and award-winning fiction and non-fiction.


The Library selectively collects textbook materials. In some instances, the selecting librarian may decide to purchase textbook material to assure adequate coverage of a discipline. Textbook material may also become available through gift donations and will be evaluated according to gift procedures.

Periodicals including Magazines, Journals, Newspapers, E-journals

Subject librarians make recommendations to the Collection Development Committee for the purchase of periodical titles to be added to and maintained for the Library’s collection. Magazines, journals, newspapers, and e-journals are added based on such considerations as faculty recommendation, support for the curriculum of the College, student interests, cost, indexing in electronic or print form, and the presence of alternative access full-text/full-image versions in the library’s electronic databases.

When back issues of periodicals are to be retained indefinitely, they may be maintained in either microform, bound, or electronic form based on the recommendation of the respective subject librarian.

Government Documents

Government publications in all formats may be added to the collection either through purchase or as gifts. Individual subject librarians will decide on the selection, location and retention of such materials based on the item’s content and use in support of research and instruction at the College. The Library does not maintain a separate collection of government documents.

Patrons needing government documents not owned by the Library will be referred to Interlibrary Loan or local depository libraries.


Librarians will decide on the selection, location, and retention of maps or atlases based on the item’s content and how it will support research and instruction at the College.

Audiovisual materials, e.g. videos, DVDs, music CDs, models, maps, video/audio streaming services

Non-print materials (e.g., VHS and DVD videos, compact discs, models, streaming media services) are evaluated on the same basis as are books according to the “Criteria for Selection of Materials” with special emphasis on the suitability of the format to the content, the quality of the production, and the Library’s ability to provide the equipment, access and support that is required in order to use the material.

Popular Videos

The Library’s collection of popular video titles is limited in size due to space and technological considerations plus budget priorities. Selection criteria include enduring value, artistic or cultural merit, quality of technical production and number of awards won. Our focus is on academic rather than recreational use, although these two may overlap.

Computer Software

The Library does not collect software application packages such as CADD/CAM, Adobe Illustrator, etc. to support coursework at the college. Software is available in College computer labs.

Internet Resources

The Library selects and provides access to Internet resources based on the resource’s content and how it will support research and instruction at the college. Evaluative considerations such as authority, purpose, currency, accuracy, presentation, and stability will also be used to determine the inclusion of Internet resources in the Library’s catalog.

Curricular Materials

Curricular materials required for teaching specific course sections, such as main textbooks, lab manuals, teachers’ manuals, lesson-based video sets, etc., will typically be purchased by the respective department or Division.

Class instructors are urged to consult their subject/liaison librarian regarding curricular as well as supplemental educational resources that support course learning outcomes. These materials, whether books, online videos, DVDs, etc., may already be available in the Library or the librarians can help to identify an alternative or open access resource. The librarian can also consider whether the requested material is of potential interest beyond that course. If that is the case, the librarian can choose to purchase the item(s) for the Library’s collection (regardless of format).

If materials of any format are already in the Library’s collections, they can be placed on reserve at the COD Library, or, in the case of online resources, directly linked from a course shell. On occasion, a copy of a course textbook is purchased for the Library collection at the discretion of the subject librarian; in other cases, the Library receives donations of textbooks. In either case, textbooks for current courses are typically placed on reserve for one or more course sections until superceded by a later edition. In this way, they can be used by the largest number of students taking that course.

For online course materials requiring licenses for students in particular courses, a faculty member should seek funding from his/her own department or Division, and work with Learning Technologies staff on the licensing structure, purchase, and integration into the course shell/LMS.

Special Collections


The College of DuPage Archives, housed in the Library, organizes and maintains a collection of historical and official records of the College. Items such as minutes of the Board of Trustees, legal documents relating to the organization of the College, College catalogs and class schedules, newspaper clippings, news releases, books and articles written by faculty and staff, minutes and records of campus-wide committees, and College-produced brochures, photographs, slides, and video recordings will be collected for and preserved in the Archives. The Archivist reserves the right to discard duplicate material and to decline to add items not closely related to the history of the College. The Archives does not collect student, personnel or departmental records, syllabi, and financial records unless they have historical interest or value.


The juvenile collection supports academic coursework at the College of DuPage. Every effort is made to include titles that have won literary awards such as Newbery, Caldecott, and Coretta Scott King Awards. This collection contains materials from Pre-K through Grade 8.

Career & College Information (CCIC)

The Career & College Information collection (CCIC) contains print and non-print materials relating to careers, colleges and universities, scholarships, the job search, professional school examinations, career certification tests and related topics. Duplicates will be purchased for heavily used items.


Materials are added to the Philanthropy collection on the basis of suitability for local nonprofit users, the recommendation of major review sources (utilizing primarily the Chronicle of Philanthropy with additional sources), the recommendation of Forefront librarians and the recommendation of individual nonprofit staff and/or local philanthropic groups.


The purpose of this circulating collection is to support the recreational information needs of the College community. This collection will consist primarily of award-winning material and/or items that are in high demand by users. Requests for specific titles and for multiple copies are considered on an individual basis. Titles remain in these collections until either their popularity diminishes or their physical condition deteriorates beyond repair.

Graphic Novels

Selection criteria include enduring value, artistic or cultural merit, quality of technical production and number of awards won. The selection supports the needs of students and faculty rather than those of the recreational reader, although these two may overlap.

Popular Audiobooks

The purpose of this circulating collection is to support the recreational information needs of faculty, staff, students and community card holders. The audiobook collection will consist primarily of award-winning material and/or items that are in high demand by users.

Donations (Gift Titles)

The Library reserves the right to accept or discard gift materials as it deems fit, with no restrictions being imposed by the donor.

  • Special collections are not established for donated materials.
  • In exceptional cases, arrangements may be made to pick up donations.
  • Donated materials will be given book plates if requested.
  • Value appraisals are not written for the donor by the Library. Such appraisals should be arranged for by the donor before the items are donated to the Library.
  • A letter acknowledging the acceptance of the gift will be sent to the donor by the Dean.

Librarians will base their add/discard decisions using the same criteria as for purchased materials. Additional considerations include:

  1. The physical condition, currency and anticipated use of the material are the primary criteria.
  2. Textbooks and paperback books are added if they meet the criteria for purchased materials.
  3. Duplicates are only added if proven or anticipated use indicates that this is desirable.

Deselection (Weeding)

The weeding of materials from the Library's collection is a normal and necessary function of responsible librarianship. Items may be discarded due to poor physical condition, outdated information, lack of shelf space, and lack of use (as demonstrated by the item's circulation history). Considerations for weeding Internet resources include: 1) resources that are no longer accessible; 2) resources that are no longer current or reliable; 3) replacement by another resource that offers better access or more comprehensive coverage. It is the responsibility of the individual Librarian to examine the materials in his/her subject area(s) and decide what should be discarded, using professional judgment.

Repair and Binding

The Library performs:

  1. Minor in-house repair of damaged materials;
  2. Repackaging of nonprint materials for secure circulation
  3. Reinforcement of paperback books and covers on dust jackets.

Periodical binding decisions are made by the respective subject librarian. The decision to purchase microfilm in lieu of binding is made by the subject librarian based on cost and availability of funds, frequency of publication, history of holdings, space constraints and problems with theft/mutilation of issues.

Replacement of Materials

The Technical Services Department notifies an individual librarian when an item in his/her subject area is damaged or missing. The Librarian will decide whether or not to order a replacement copy. Some factors to be considered are the item’s past circulation history, information content, cost and expected use in the future.

Intellectual Freedom

The Librarians have the responsibility to develop a collection in their subject areas that supports the teaching, research needs, and cultural interests of a diverse constituency. This may involve selecting materials that some individuals or groups may find incorrect or offensive. As an institution of higher education, which encourages the contemplation of many different issues, the Library collection should have materials that express a variety of views and opinions on various topics. This Library supports the "Library Bill of Rights" and intellectual freedom as stated by the American Library Association.

Cooperative Collection Development

Cooperative collection development means collaborating with other libraries, government agencies or outside organizations, to obtain resources for the Library. Cooperative collection development may take place directly with neighboring libraries or through other means and agencies.

Appendix A: Form for Request for Reconsideration of Library Resources

If you wish to request reconsideration of a specific title, please download below and return the completed Request for Reconsideration Form either via electronic submission or by mail to:

Dean of the Library
College of DuPage Library
425 Fawell Blvd.
Glen Ellyn, Il 60137-6599

The Dean will have the request reviewed by the Collection Development Committee and a recommendation will be forwarded to library administrators for a decision.

Appendix B: Copyright

COD Library copyright resources

The Library complies with and promotes adherence to United States copyright law.

This Collection Policy developed by the Library Collection Development Committee and approved at meeting of Full-time Librarians and Dean of the Library, December 5, 2012.

Updated April, 2013.

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