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  • Collection Development Policy

    I. Introduction

    A. Purpose

    The purpose of this document is to:

    • Provide planning guidelines for the long term development of the collection.
    • Provided working guidelines for the selection of library materials.
    • Provide guidelines for the maintenance and continuous assessment of the collection.

    B.   Virginia Peninsula Community College Vision and Mission Statement

    C.  Virginia Peninsula Community College Learning Resource Center Mission Statement

    The Learning Resources Centers advance the mission of the college through a comprehensive, readily accessible collection of informational materials, instructional technologies, and other academic support services that meet the ever-changing educational needs of students, faculty, and staff. The Learning Resources Centers provide a supportive environment, tools, and expertise that nurture and enhance the teaching and learning process for the entire college community.

    While supporting the overall mission of the college and the Learning Resources Centers, the mission of the libraries is to provide the information services and resources required to enhance, support, and respond to the ever-changing needs of the students, faculty, staff, and community at large served by Virginia Peninsula Community College.

    D.   Description of the Collection

    The library provides and supports student and faculty access to information resources in various formats (including print, media and electronic databases). The Virginia Peninsula Community College library's physical collection is housed in and accessible from the Hampton and Historic Triangle campus libraries.

    E.   Resource Sharing Agreements

    Upon request of a patron, items can be transferred between the Hampton and Historic Triangle campuses within two working days of a request. Additionally, VIVA membership provides free interlibrary loans among its members, thereby providing access to the library resources of Virginia’s senior research universities.  The Virginia Tidewater Consortium for Higher Education’s (VTC) reciprocal borrowing agreement makes participating academic library collections available to Virginia Peninsula Community College students, faculty, and staff.

    II. Responsibility for Collection Development

    To ensure the quality and comprehensiveness of the total collection, the library assumes responsibility for building the collection. Faculty members are encouraged to recommend materials for purchase throughout the year, and their recommendations are given first priority. A professional librarian or designated paraprofessional is assigned to each of the college’s divisions to act as a liaison.  The division liaison is responsible for making the library staff aware of new and updated courses and curricula which will require library support.  Liaisons also select and deselect materials, review gifts, monitor the strengths and weaknesses of their discipline’s collection, and maintain communication between the library and the division. The professional librarians and division liaisons are responsible for material selection and collection development.

    III. Budget Allocation

    The Virginia Peninsula Community College Library is responsible for its materials budget.  Allocated amounts are not assigned to divisions; rather, the library considers the overall balance of the collection along with immediate needs when allocating resources.  In a particular year, budget allocations may be adjusted to support new courses or programs, programs under review, programs up for re-accreditation, or quickly changing fields.

    IV. Scope of the Collection

    The scope of the Virginia Peninsula Community College Library collection is defined by the college curricula.

    The Virginia Peninsula Community College Library attempts to collect at the “Initial Study or Instructional Support” level as defined in the American Library Association’s Guidelines for the Formulation of Collection Development Policies [David L. Perkins, ed.  Collection Development Committee, ALA Resources and Technical Division, 1979].   At the Initial Study or Instructional Support Level, collections provide information about a subject in a systematic way, but at a level of less than research intensity, and support the needs of general library users and undergraduate students.  The collections include:

    • An extensive collection of general monographs and reference works and selected specialized monographs and reference works.  These resources may be in print or online format.
    • An extensive collection of general periodicals and a representative collection of specialized periodicals in print or online format.
    • A limited collection of foreign language learning materials for non-native speakers.
    • An extensive collection of works of well-known authors and selections from the works of lesser-known authors.
    • Access to an extensive collection of print and online electronic resources, including bibliographic tools, journals, databases, etc.

    A “Study” or “Instructional Support” level collection should be systematically reviewed for currency of information and for assurance that essential and important information is retained, including significant numbers of classic retrospective materials.

    V. Selection Criteria

    The primary criterion for selecting any item is its relevance to Virginia Peninsula Community College’s teaching mission.  As funds permit, the library will also purchase general informational resources, recreational reading, and faculty research materials. Faculty research materials will be obtained through interlibrary loan if the requested item does not meet the library’s collection criteria. The professional librarians, division liaisons and the acquisitions librarian are responsible for material selection.

    The following selection criteria apply to all purchasing and gifts but may assume greater or lesser importance depending on the type of material under consideration.

    • Relevance to the college’s curricula
    • Faculty recommendations
    • Holdings of previous editions
    • Contribution to the breadth or depth of the collection
    • Currency considered in tandem with lasting value of the content
    • Appropriateness of content level (community college or undergraduate level preferred)
    • Authoritativeness and accuracy
    • Demand (based on circulation statistics, reference requests, and interlibrary loan requests)
    • Ease of access and user friendliness
    • Inclusion in Virginia Peninsula Community College library-owned bibliographies and indexes
    • Recommendation in standard reviewing resources
    • Availability at other libraries or online (Periodical titles included in the full-text VIVA databases are not purchased in paper format.)
    • Accreditation requirements
    • Relative cost of materials in relation to the budget
    • Format
    • Paperbacks are preferred for leisure reading and subject fields which become quickly outdated.
    • Hardbacks are preferred for items considered permanent additions to the collection.
    • Non-print material such as audio-visual items and electronic sources are purchased in a format compatible with current technology.
    • Textbooks, workbooks, or disposable materials are purchased for the circulation collection only when they are considered the best source on a particular topic.

    VI. Collections within the Virginia Peninsula Community College Library

    A. Circulating Collection

    Due to space constraints, the combined circulating collection of the two campuses will be maintained at a size of 70,000 titles or fewer through careful deselection.

    B. Reference Collection

    The reference collection is non-circulating and includes works that are intended to directly or indirectly provide information in support of the college curricula.  Standard general reference tools are also included.  Deselected materials may be relegated to the circulating collection as appropriate. If online resources provide the exact or superior content and ease of access as the print version, then both online and print versions of a resource are not purchased.

    C. Reserve Collection

    Reserve items may be either instructor-owned or library-owned materials and are placed on reserve at the request of faculty members.  Upon the request of a faculty member, the library purchases items for the reserve collection provided the materials meet the collection development standards.

    D. Paperback and Graphic Novel Collections

    A collection of paperback books and graphic novels supports the college’s reading courses and also meets the leisure reading needs of patrons. Books in this collection are selected to appeal to patrons while still maintaining reasonable literary standards.

    E. Periodical Collection

    Access to periodical articles is often provided through the online VIVA databases.  Print periodicals which duplicate the online titles are not purchased, however print periodicals are purchased to support Virginia Peninsula Community College curricula where online resources are not available. A few periodicals may be purchased to meet patron leisure reading requests.  Back issues of some periodicals are available on microfilm, and printed indexes to this microfilm collection are retained.

    F. Audio-Visual Collection

    The criteria for selection listed above also apply to audio-visual materials. The choice of format of AV materials is determined by current technology and the type of hardware available in the library and the classrooms.

    G. Children’s Books

    The library maintains a small collection of children’s books to support the education curriculum and leisure reading needs of patrons and their families.

    H. College Archives

    The library maintains the Virginia Peninsula Community College archives. Included in the archives are:

    • Copies of any minutes, meetings, or reports of any committee or division pertinent to the history of Virginia Peninsula Community College, formerly Thomas Nelson Community College.
    • Significant publications of the college (For example – Thomas Nelson/Virginia Peninsula Community College catalogs, self-study reports, faculty and adjunct faculty handbooks, the VCCS policy manual, the Virginia Peninsula Community College administrative manual, Flagstaff and other official newsletters, student newspapers, commencement programs, and Kaleidoscope).
    • External documents which pertain to Virginia Peninsula Community College (For example – SCHEV publications, VCCS curriculum guides, SACS guidelines, and the VCCS policy manual).
    • Newspaper articles specifically about Virginia Peninsula Community College or the professional activities of Virginia Peninsula Community College personnel.

    VII. Gift Policy

    Donations to the Virginia Peninsula Community College are welcomed and encouraged and are contingent upon the approval of the Director of Learning Resources and the professional library team. All donations are first received and processed through the Virginia Peninsula Community College Educational Foundation.

    Monetary gifts may be designated for the library in general, or the donor may wish to consult with the LRC Director to determine specific needs of the library.  Library materials given in memory or in honor of someone will have a book plate inserted with an acknowledgement in each book.

    All donations of materials to the library must meet the same criteria as purchased items and must be in good condition.  After evaluation by the professional librarians, materials may be added to the library collection, offered for book sales or free distribution, or discarded.  Donations will not be returned to the donor.

    Monetary value will not be assigned by the library.  Donors who wish to have an evaluation of their gifts for tax purposes are advised to seek the needed information in appropriate IRS publications and/or have materials appraised prior to donation.

    VIII. Freedom of Information Policy

    Virginia Peninsula Community College library is building a collection which includes diverse viewpoints on many topics and issues. The library does not approve nor endorse any particular viewpoint or belief represented in its collection.  A patron may reject materials for himself but may not restrict access to the materials by others.  A patron who feels that the collection does not provide diverse viewpoints on a particular topic is encouraged to recommend titles which will bring balance to the collection.  All patrons with concerns regarding library materials must submit a Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials form. Forms will be referred to the Director of Learning Resources who has final responsibility for deciding whether to add or withdraw materials from the collection.  The library abides by the Library Bill of Rights of the American Library Association (see appendix A) and by the Intellectual Freedom Principles for Academic Libraries adopted by the ACRL Intellectual Freedom Committee (see appendix B).

    IX. Deselection Guidelines

    Collection development requires not only the careful selection of materials but also the careful deselection of materials.  The professional librarians, in consultation with the faculty, are responsible for the thoughtful and systematic weeding of library materials.

    Considerations for weeding include items that are:

    • Superseded by a new edition or format.
    • Outdated or contain incorrect information.
    • Duplicate volumes unless the item is in heavy demand.
    • Unusable due to poor physical condition.
    • Items determined to be of minimal value when weighed against the collection as a whole.

    Items which should be retained beyond the usual expectations are:

    • Indexes and bibliographies which cite periodicals and books held by the Virginia Peninsula Community College library.
    • Items which contain information about the Virginia Peninsula (for example: local history, geography, environmental issues, biography, business information, etc.)
    • Items which are considered classics in various subject fields.
    • Classic literature and literary criticism of notable authors.
    • Items which appear on current recommendation lists.

    X. Policy Review

    This policy will be reviewed on an annual basis or more frequently as needed.

    Last updated 7/1/2022