Public Library Standards 2007 - Collections
The public library assembles, organizes, preserves and makes readily available to all people a variety of print materials, non-print materials and electronic access to information. Collections are the core of a library and need to be current and well balanced. Library materials should reflect the diversity of the community, and an effort should be made to ensure that the collection includes materials its patrons need and want. Collection development should reflect specific, collection- related goals and objectives.
The size of the collection is not the only criterion of measuring the effectiveness of a library’s service to the community. Just as important as the number of items a library owns are the timeliness and usefulness of the materials and alternative methods of providing information. Materials need to meet the changing needs, tastes and interests of the community. Cooperative collection development is important; as are borrowing and lending via Maine Info Net and preservation of local materials in concert with historical societies.
A general collection development policy helps the library to balance its defined roles, the needs and interests of the community, the diversity of American society, the existing collection, the library’s mission statement, the resources of other area library collections and the wide variety of available information formats.
A more specific selection policy provides the framework for the selection, acquisition, organization and evaluation of both current holdings and future resources and services.
|1. * The library has a written policy for the selection and de-selection of library materials and for general collection development. This written selection policy endorses the Library Bill of Rights, Free Access to Libraries for Minors, and the Freedom to Read and Freedom to View Statements. (see appendices B, C, D and E.)|
|2. *The materials selection policy includes a procedure for handling complaints, questions and comments about materials along with a procedure for responding to these concerns.|
|3. The collection development and materials selection policies are reviewed by the library board and the library director every three to five years.|
|4. The library has a disaster plan outlining procedures to follow in case of fire, water or other damage to the collection.|
|5. The library has a preservation plan for rare book and local history collections.|
Collections – Selection, Acquisition and Evaluation - General Development
A library’s collection should contain a wide range of materials in a variety of formats, including electronic resources. Materials should be available in sufficient quantities to meet the needs of the community. Although volume per capita and other quantity goals are noted below, quantity should be balanced with quality-of-collection goals.
|1. The library allocates sufficient funds to maintain the quality of its collection as measured by a percent of total operating expenditures.
_______15% ______ 20%
|2. * The library provides no fewer than 6000 volumes.
N.B….Nonprint items are counted as volumes; periodicals are not.
|3. The library provides at least as many quality volumes per capita as recommended below.
N.B….Nonprint items are counted as volumes; periodicals are not.
|4. The library maintains an acquisition rate of at least 5% per year based on the optimum recommended volumes per capita.|
|5. The library maintains a current reference collection.|
|6. Every three to five years every item in the collection is evaluated for retention, replacement or withdrawal to determine its usefulness according to the library’s collection development policy.|
|7. The library has an up-to-date collection, 25% of which is circulating materials published in the last 5 years.|
|8. To maintain the quality of its collection, the library systematically withdraws materials no longer useful at the rate of at least 5% per year based on the optimum recommended volumes per capita.|
|9. The library staff spends time regularly studying and developing the collections using standard review sources, e.g.. Public Library Catalog, Fiction Catalog, Children’s Catalog and current review journals, e.g., Booklist, Library Journal, and etc.|
|10. Materials are selected in anticipation of, as well as in response to, requests from library users. The library provides a mechanism for patrons to suggest items for purchase or titles to be withdrawn.|
|11. *The collection is continually updated to meet the changing needs, tastes and interests of the community.|
|12. Orders for new materials are placed at regular intervals throughout the year to ensure a steady flow of new materials for the public.|
|13. The library acquires materials representing a range of viewpoints in support of ALA’s statement on Freedom to Read. (see appendix C.)|
Collections – Selection, Acquisition and Evaluation - Periodicals
|1. The library provides sufficient periodicals either in print or electronic format to meet the recreational and informational needs of the community with a minimum of 20 print periodical titles.|
|2. Most periodicals are indexed in print periodical indexes or electronic databases owned by the library.|
|3. As obtaining current information from electronic sources becomes more common, hard copies of periodicals are chosen primarily for browsing rather than for reference use.|
|1. The library calculates the following measures annually as part of the evaluation of the collection:
The library anticipates and responds to user needs, providing information in a variety of formats.
|1. The library provides or has access to the Internet and full-text electronic information resources including: MARVEL! Maine’s Virtual Library and local databases.|
|2. The library serves as the memory of the community and collects and preserves materials on community history and works by local authors, illustrators and poets.|
|3. The library keeps a file or database of community information including copies of local codes and ordinances.|
|4. The library provides materials in formats appropriate to the needs of its special populations (talking books and large print books for sight impaired; a children’s collection; captioned videos; materials in other languages; and books for adult new readers, etc.).|
|5. There is well maintained equipment to support the various formats in the collection.|
Cataloging makes it easy for the public to access a library’s holdings and provides control over resources. Cataloging can either be manual or automated, though preference should be given to automated cataloging systems, because of their efficiency, economy, and capacity to service patron populations beyond the library’s walls.
|1. *The library provides an up-to-date bibliographic card catalog or automated catalog arranged and indexed in the most useful form for patrons.|
|2. The collection is cataloged and classified using the current version of AACR II for bibliographic control, the MARC electronic format and other recognized professional standards for classification and subject organization.|
|3. The library inputs its bibliographic and holdings information into the statewide database through Maine Info Net.|
No library, no matter how large, can satisfy all the information needs of its community. Through a variety of cooperative arrangements a library can reach beyond the titles in its own collection to meet patrons’ information needs. Interlibrary loan makes the world of information accessible to a library’s patrons.
|1. The library cooperates with other local libraries to coordinate collection development and loan policies when appropriate.|
|2. The library has an established interlibrary loan procedure.|
|3. Interlibrary loan services are available to all regardless of age.|
|4. The library lends as well as borrows.|
|5. The library provides for its staff and patrons direct or indirect access to Maine InfoNet, URSUS, SOLAR, Minerva, and other state database systems.|
- ALA - Dealing with Challenges to Books and Other Library Materials
- ALA Library Fact Sheet 15: Weeding Library Collections: A Selected Annotated Bibliography for Library Collection Evaluation
- ALA Library Fact Sheet 8: Interlibrary Loans
- American Library Association. Office for Intellectual Freedom. Intellectual Freedom Manual. 7th ed. Chicago, IL: American Library Association, 2005.
- Cassell, Kay A., and Elizabeth Futas. Developing Public Library Collections, Policies and Procedures: A How-To-Do-It Manual for Small and Medium-Sized Public Libraries. New York: Neal-Schuman, 1991.
- Children’s Catalog 18th edition. New York: H.W. Wilson, 2001.
- Fiction Catalog 15th edition. New York: H.W. Wilson, 2006.
- Hoffman, Preston. Audio Book Breakthrough: a Guide to Selection and Use in Public Libraries and Education. Westport CT: Greenwood Press, 1994.
- Johnson, Peggy. Fundamentals of Collection Development & Management. Chicago American Library Association, 2004.
- Kaye, Alan L. Video and Other Nonprint Resources in the Small Library. LAMA Small Libraries Publications Series. Chicago, IL: ALA, 1991.
- Kaywell, Joan. Adolescents at Risk: Guide to Fiction and Nonfiction for Young Adults, Parents and Professionals. Westport CT: Greenwood Press, 1993.
- Lewis, Audrey. Madame Audrey’s Guide to Mostly Cheap but Good Reference Books for Small and Rural Libraries. Chicago: ALA, 1998.
- Lima, Carolyn. A to Zoo: Subject Access to Children’s Picture Books. 7th edition.New York, Bowker, 2006.
- Lowry, Marcia Duncan. Preservation and Conservation in Small Libraries. LAMA Small Libraries Publications Series. Chicago, IL: American Library Association, 1989.
- Mason-Robinson, Sally. Developing and Managing Video Collections in Libraries. New York: Neal-Schuman, 1996.
- Nichols, C. Allen. Thinking Outside the Book: Alternatives for Today's Teen Library Collections. Westport, Conn. : Libraries Unlimited, 2004.
- Odean, Kathleen. Great Books for Boys. New York: Ballantine Books, 1998.
- Odean, Kathleen. Great Books for Girls. New York: Ballantine Books, 1997.
- Public Library Catalog. 12th edition. New York: H.W. Wilson. 2004.
- Segal, Joseph P. Evaluating and Weeding Collections in Small and Medium-Sized Public Libraries: The CREW Method. Chicago, IL: American Library Association, 1980.
- Slote, Stanley J. Weeding Library Collections-II. 2nd rev. ed. Littleton, CO: Libraries Unlimited, 1997.
- Stoll, Donald. Magazines for Kids and Teens. Glassboro, N.J.: Educational Press Association of America, 1997.
- Wynar, Bohdan. Ed. Recommended Reference Books for Small and Medium-sized Libraries and Media Centers. Englewood, CO: Libraries Unlimited, 2004.