Skip Navigation LinksSFSC Home > College Procedures > College Procedure
Back to Index

South Florida State College
Administrative Procedures

Procedure: 2066

Title: Acquisition of Learning Resources Materials

Based on Policy: 2.06 - General Powers, Duties, and Responsibilities of the President

Office of Primary Responsibility: Vice President for Educational and Student Services/ Learning Resource Center


  1. Purpose:

To provide sufficient educational materials to serve the needs of South Florida State College

  1. Procedure:

The chair of library services and the director, e-Learning use established guidelines in determining the quantity and scope of educational materials to be purchased.

  1. Library services

The mission of the Library is to provide information and services which facilitate and encourage academic excellence, lifelong learning, and the fulfillment of educational, occupational, and personal goals to SFSC students, faculty and staff.

    1. Purpose

The primary purpose of the library collection is to support the educational needs of the students and the community of SFSC. In general, the collection should reflect one or more of the following:

      1. Curriculum support
      2. General information
      3. General or special professional growth
      4. Cultural enrichment
      5. Extracurricular interests

The purpose of this procedure is to guide the growth and maintenance of the SFSC Library collections in accordance with both the Library and the college's mission statements.

    1. Intellectual freedom

The SFSC Library upholds the principles of the American Library Association's Library Bill of Rights and Freedom to Read statements.

The Library strives to select materials representing all sides of various issues. Because of this, some materials in the collection may be considered controversial by certain groups or individuals. It is not the college’s intent to offend these groups or to endorse a certain aspect of an issue. Instead, the college’s goal is to provide materials representing diverse viewpoints in support of academic offerings and to suit the varied backgrounds of the students, faculty, and staff.

If any user has a complaint regarding library materials, he/she may fill out a "Request for Reconsideration of Learning Resource Materials" form located at the circulation desk. This form will be reviewed by the chair, library services, and dean, academic support, shared with the vice president of educational and student services and with the curriculum committee and a decision will be made regarding the challenged material. The complainant will receive a written copy of the decision.

    1. Responsibility for collection development

All library users, regardless of status, will be encouraged to make requests for library purchases by contacting any of the Library staff.  If the item is consistent with the collection policy guidelines, and if funding is available, the material may be acquired.

The chair, library services and the professional librarian consult with faculty to obtain purchasing recommendations, and also use selection tools, such as review publications, bibliographies, and publisher catalogs to select materials. Responsibility for collection development lies with the chair, library services, and dean, academic support.

    1. Levels of collection intensity

The amount of support the Library provides each program will vary. Some programs require highly specialized materials and equipment while other programs can be adequately supported by general reference materials and a few basic media.

Recognizing that SFSC is a Level II baccalaureate degree granting institution whose primary mission is providing undergraduate level instruction, remedial education and certificate programs, the Library staff should focus selection at the basic information level for emerging and established program areas. Subjects are to be addressed at the basic information level until a need for more specialized materials is recognized.

      1. Minimal information level – Collections that support minimal inquiries about this subject and include:
        1. A limited collection of general materials, including monographs and reference works
        2. Periodicals directly dealing with topics and in-depth electronic information resources are not collected.

The collection is frequently and systematically reviewed for currency of information. Superseded editions and titles containing outdated information is withdrawn. Classic or standard retrospective materials may be retained.

      1. Basic Information Level – Collections that serve to introduce and define a subject, to indicate the varieties of information available elsewhere, and to support the needs of general library users through the first two years of college instruction include:
        1. A limited collection of monographs and reference works
        2. A limited collection of representative general periodicals
        3. Defined access to a limited collection of owned or remotely-accessed electronic bibliographic tools, texts, data sets, journals, etc.

The collection is frequently and systematically reviewed for currency of information. Superseded editions and titles containing outdated information is withdrawn. Classic or standard retrospective materials may be retained.

      1. Study or Instructional Support Level – Collections that 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 through college and beginning graduate instruction include:
        1. An extensive collection of general monographs and reference works and selected specialized monographs and reference works
        2. An extensive collection of general periodicals and a representative collection of specialized periodicals
        3. Limited collections of appropriate foreign language materials, e.g., foreign language learning materials for non-native speakers or foreign language materials about a topic such as German history in German
        4. Extensive collections of the works of well-known authors and selections from the works of lesser-known authors
        5. Defined access to an extensive collection of owned or remotely-accessed electronic resources, including bibliographic tools, texts, data sets, journals, etc.
      1. The collection is systematically reviewed for currency of information and for assurance that essential and important information is retained, including significant numbers of classic retrospective materials.
    1. Selection guidelines

Materials are selected according to the following criteria listed in priority ranking:

      1. Support of the SFSC educational curriculum
      2. Correlation/fit with the existing collection
      3. Appropriate level
      4. Accuracy and objectivity
      5. Reputation of author or publisher
      6. Currency/permanence
      7. Price
      8. Demand
      9. Condition
    1. Budget

The Library receives funding from the college to purchase or provide access to new materials, both print and electronic. These resources may be supplemented by grants, gifts, and purchases by other college departmental accounts.

There is no specific budget allocation for individual disciplines. This allows for greater flexibility in meeting unanticipated needs, such as departmental or program changes or increased patron demand in a subject area.

    1. Policies by format of material
    1. 1.   Books

Hardcover books are preferred due to their durability. Works that are of lasting value will be purchased in hardcover when available. Books for which the librarians anticipate heavy use will be purchased in hardback or bound paperbacks. Paperbacks will be purchased for rapidly changing topics or in the interests of economy. In general, single copies of books are purchased. If a topic is very popular, the Library will consider purchasing multiple copies.

      1. Textbooks

Textbooks are not normally purchased by the Library. They will be purchased only if they provide a good, general introduction to a topic or when no other general books can be found. Textbooks for specific courses will not be purchased. Professors may place their own textbook copies on reserve for students' use, if they wish.

      1. Periodicals

Journal, magazine, and newspaper subscriptions represent a continual and often large expense and are thus added very selectively. Priority is given to periodicals with relevance to a course being taught at the college and accessibility through an index in the Library. Full-text availability from one of the subscription databases will be another factor in determining whether to subscribe to the print version.

      1. Electronic Resources (eBooks, databases, eJournals, etc.)

Electronic resources are defined as any material requiring a computer for access. The SFSC Library shall choose to acquire or access electronic resources based on the above selection guidelines. Because there is often a print equivalent to electronic resources, the following will be considered in choosing format:

        1. Equivalent price or increase in price is considered appropriate for advantage of format
        2. More sophisticated searching tools are provided in the electronic format
        3. Providing multi-user and remote access is important for resource
        4. Resource will be less vulnerable to theft and damage
        5. A significant amount of space is saved
        6. Electronic version is updated more frequently
        7. Equipment needed for access is available
      1. Audiovisuals (DVDs,  CDs, etc.)

Due to the high cost of audiovisual materials, the Library will only purchase if the material is acceptable to the following criteria:

        1. Importance of the subject matter to the collection
        2. Scarcity of material
        3. Timeliness and permanence of the title
        4. Technical quality
        5. Audience viewing level
        6. Favorable preview by faculty
      1. Foreign language materials

Items written in languages other than English will be acquired when they support the Foreign Language curriculum requirements and English as a Second Language program.

      1. Popular fiction

Popular fiction will not normally be purchased for the regular book collection, unless the book is considered of significant literary value or is studied in one of the literature or reading courses.

    1. Gift and donation policy

The Library accepts gift materials according to the same collection guidelines as purchased materials. Materials cannot be accepted when the donor requires that they be kept together and not incorporated into the existing collection or that they not be allowed to circulate. Popular fiction and other non-essential materials may be accepted as space allows. Books that do not meet the collection development guidelines will be disposed of as the Library sees fit either through discard or donation.

The Library staff will not make appraisals of materials for either resale value or statements of donation on income tax reports. A letter of acknowledgement will be sent to the donor.

    1. Weeding

The Librarians conduct systematic programs of weeding from the general library collection those items that are obsolete, no longer appropriate, or physically damaged beyond repair.  The removal of materials of limited usefulness is essential to maintaining the quality of the collection. The process of weeding requires the same participation by the faculty as does the selection of materials. Decisions to withdraw are made in consultation with the faculty member of the academic discipline most directly concerned with possible future use of the resource. Factors involving decisions to weed are based on S. J. Slote’s Weeding Library Collections (1975) and include:

      1. Works of a timeworn appearance which are not necessarily rare or of considerable value in terms of either content or actual marketability
      2. Unneeded duplicates
      3. Earlier editions which have been superseded
      4. Works with outdated or incorrect information
      5. Books over 30 years old which have not circulated for the last 10 years
      6. Ordinary textbooks and school dictionaries
      7. Superseded almanacs, yearbooks, directories, and manuals.

All items weeded and withdrawn from the collection will be offered first to students. Any items not chosen within the allotted time will be disposed of by the library.

  1. eLearning

The mission of the Electronic Learning (eLearning) Department is to deliver excellent support of electronic learning and multimedia resources throughout the College by providing technology training, multimedia resource development, instructional design assistance, electronic course and system management to students, faculty, staff and administrators. We strive to support student learning and College services through the use of advanced technology and multimedia resource.

    1. Purpose

The primary purpose of the eLearning collection is to support the professional development and educational needs of the staff, students and the community of South Florida State College. In general, the collection should reflect one or more of the following:

      1. Curriculum support
      2. General information
      3. General or special professional growth
      4. Cultural enrichment
      5. Extracurricular interests
    1. The purpose of this procedure is to guide the growth and maintenance of the SFSC eLearning collections in accordance with both the eLearning and the college's mission statements.  In addition to resources secured from outside sources, the college also creates educational and professional development resources that will become part of this collection. 
    1. Intellectual freedom

The South Florida State College eLearning Department upholds the principles of the American Library Association's Library Bill of Rights and Freedom to Read statements.

The eLearning Department strives to select materials representing all sides of various issues.  Because of this, some materials in the collection may be considered controversial by certain groups or individuals. It is not the college’s intent to offend these groups or to endorse a certain aspect of an issue. Instead, the college’s goal is to provide materials representing diverse viewpoints in support of academic offerings and to suit the varied backgrounds of students, faculty, and staff.

If any user has a complaint regarding eLearning materials, he/she may email the director, eLearning at eLearning@southflorida.edu . This email will be reviewed by the director, eLearning, shared with the vice president for educational and student services and with the eLearning Committee.  Then a decision will be made regarding the challenged material. The complainant will receive a written copy of the decision.

    1. Responsibility for collection development

The eLearning Department does not purchase resources for the collection.  The eLearning staff does consult with administrators, the SPD Committee chair and faculty to obtain suggestions on purchasing recommendations, and also use selection tools, such as review publications, bibliographies, and publisher catalogs to select materials. Any purchased resources for professional development would require SPD funding.  Any resources for education would require funding from specific academic departments or other college budgets. Ultimate responsibility for collection development lies with the director, eLearning.

    1. Levels of collection intensity

The amount of support the eLearning provides each program will vary. Some programs require highly specialized resources and materials.  Recognizing that South Florida State College is a Level 2 baccalaureate degree granting institution whose primary mission is providing undergraduate level instruction, remedial education and certificate programs, the eLearning staff should focus selection at the basic information level for emerging and established program areas. Subjects are to be addressed at the basic information level until a need for more specialized materials is recognized.

The collection will be frequently and systematically reviewed for currency of information. Superseded editions and titles containing outdated information should be withdrawn. Classic or standard retrospective materials may be retained.

    1. Selection guidelines

Materials are selected according to the following criteria listed in priority ranking:

      1. Support of the SFSC educational curriculum
      2. Correlation/fit with the existing collection
      3. Appropriate level
      4. Accuracy and objectivity
      5. Reputation of author or publisher
      6. Currency/permanence
      7. Price
      8. Demand
      9. Condition
    1. Policies by format of material
      1. Electronic Resources (Multimedia files such as video, audio, etc.)

Electronic resources are defined as any material requiring a computer for access. The SFSC eLearning Department shall choose to acquire or access electronic resources based on the above selection guidelines. Because there is often a print equivalent to electronic resources, the following will be considered in choosing format:

        1. Equivalent price or increase in price is considered appropriate for advantage of format
        2. More sophisticated searching tools are provided in the electronic format
        3. Providing multi-user and remote access is important for resource
        4. Resource will be less vulnerable to theft and damage
        5. A significant amount of space is saved
        6. Electronic version is updated more frequently
        7. Software and/or Equipment needed for access is readily available for all intended users
      1. Audiovisuals (DVDs, CDs, etc.)

Due to high expense of audiovisual materials, the eLearning Department will request purchase if the material is acceptable to the following criteria:

        1. Importance of the subject matter to the collection
        2. Scarcity of material
        3. Timeliness and permanence of the title
        4. Technical quality
        5. Audience viewing level
        6. Favorable preview by faculty
      1. Foreign language materials

Items written in languages other than English will be acquired when they support the Foreign Language curriculum requirements and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) program.

    1. Gift and donation policy

The eLearning accepts gift materials according to the same collection guidelines as purchased materials. Materials cannot be accepted when the donor requires that they be kept together and not incorporated into the existing collection or that they not be allowed to circulate. Resources that do not meet the collection development guidelines will be disposed of as the eLearning sees fit either through discard or donation.

The eLearning staff will not make appraisals of materials for either resale value or statements of donation on income tax reports. A letter of acknowledgement will be sent to the donor.

    1. Weeding

The eLearning Multimedia Specialist will conduct systematic programs of weeding from the general eLearning collection of those items that are obsolete, no longer appropriate, or physically damaged beyond repair. The removal of materials of limited usefulness is essential to maintaining the quality of the collection. The process of weeding requires the same participation by the faculty as does the selection of materials. Decisions to withdraw are made in consultation with the faculty member of the academic discipline most directly concerned with possible future use of the resource. Factors involving decisions to weed are based on S. J. Slote’s Weeding Library Collections (1975) and include:

      1. Works of a timeworn appearance which are not necessarily rare or of considerable value in terms of either content or actual marketability
      2. Unneeded duplicates
      3. Earlier editions which have been superseded
      4. Works with outdated or incorrect information

All items weeded and withdrawn from the collection will be offered first to students. Any items not chosen within the allotted time will be disposed of by the eLearning Department.

History: Last Revised: 11/20/12

Adopted: 5/17/1985

Reviewed:

Revised: 1/21/02, 6/1/05, 5/20/08, 11/20/12