WKU Library Collection Development Policy


Updated December 7, 2017

I. Introduction

The purpose of this document is to establish written principles for the development and management of the Wenzhou-Kean University (WKU) Library collections, guiding the Library in the selection, acquisition, evaluation, and maintenance of information resources in electronic and print formats. It also serves as a tool to communicate the Library’s collection development procedures to faculty, administration, students, and other stakeholders in the university community.

The primary goal of the Library is to build a collection that supports the needs of learning, teaching, and research at WKU, making available to all students, faculty, and staff in a convenient and cost-effective fashion, the digital, print, and other scholarly resources that they need. As the University grows, the Library aspires to participate in and encourage cooperative collection development and resources sharing with peer institutions. WKU Library strives to accord with the Association of College & Research Libraries’ Standards for Libraries in Higher Education.

II. Budget

The collection budget is used for the purchase of all formats of information resources, including serials and books in print or electronic format, audio, video, or other non-print materials. Factors considered are the balance between books and serials, electronic and print formats, the strengths and weakness of the collections, collections to support new programs and courses, and the cost of materials. The university allocation is supplemented by funds from gifts and donations. The WKU Head of Digital Library & Collection Development shall manage the budget to accomplish spending targets set by the Library Director.

III. Selection

The overall responsibility for the collection rests with the Head of Digital Library & Collection Development. Other Library staff, such as the Library Director and Subject Librarian(s), will recommend acquisitions. Teaching faculty members are strongly encouraged to recommend materials for acquisition in their subject areas. Students, university staff, and other interested parties may also make recommendations for purchase to the Library.

Collection decisions are also affected by the existing electronic resources, digital resources, and shared resources. The Library also benefits from group pricing on expensive electronic resources. As a member of OCLC, the Library shares their resources with other member libraries through interlibrary loan and reciprocal borrowing arrangements.

IV. Selection Principles

The Library complies with all of the provisions of the Copyright Law of the People’s Republic of China and the Implementing Rules for the Copyright Law of the People’s Republic of China. The Library recognizes the Code of Ethics of the American Library Association and the confidentiality of user information. In addition, the Library shall consult the U.S. Copyright Law (17 U.S.C) and its amendments, as both students and faculty that visit the SINO-Foreign partner Kean University campus in New Jersey will be subject to U.S. Copyright Law, including any misuse conducted with kean.edu email.

Selection of materials is a continuous process affected by the changing curriculum, as well as the availability of new materials. The primary criteria for selection is the extent to which the material is relevant to the curriculum, improves the overall collection, and enhances access to information. The general policy for selection applies equally to all types of materials being considered for the Library’s collection. Given the size of the university and the finite resources allocated to the Library, it is unlikely that the Library can provide all the materials that may be necessary or desirable. Therefore, in selecting materials, the following priorities apply (in descending order):

  1. Materials supporting the curriculum.
  2. Essential reference tools (including research databases).
  3. Materials supporting research needs of faculty, staff, and students.
  4. Materials supporting cultural and general information.
  5. Materials for recreational reading.

Online databases and electronic formats are preferred over paper or microform when available, appropriate, and cost effective for abstracts, indexing, and supplying full-text articles.

V. Donation of Materials

The Library welcomes gifts of books and other cultural heritage materials that extend and complement existing collections. As an academic library, the Library shall not accept all donations. Although exceptions may be made for rare and unique items, materials that fall outside of our collecting policy generally include:

  • Popular fiction/trade hardcover and paperbacks (except by authors)
  • Popular magazines
  • Issues of periodicals (exceptions may be in made in special circumstances)

Gifts are accepted with the understanding that they become the property of Wenzhou-Kean University upon receipt and that the Library may make all necessary decisions as to their retention, location, cataloging, and other considerations relating to their use and disposition. Materials accepted but not added to the Library collections may be exchanged with other University departments, or disposed of through charitable organizations, or other means. The Library shall not accept drop-offs of large amounts of gift materials unless a large donation has been discussed.

All gifts will be reviewed by an appropriate Library staff member prior to acceptance by the Library. The Library will need to collect identification from the donor, such a business card or letter with name and contact information.

In-kind gifts to the Library may provide donors with income tax benefits. The Library cannot appraise any donations; however, a letter of acknowledgement for volumes donated to the Library will be sent to each donor. This letter may be used for income tax purposes. Donors wishing to claim a tax deduction may want to consult with their income tax collectors or tax service companies for the proper procedure.

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