Collection Development Policy
Criteria for All Electronic Resources
Acquisitions and Cataloging Guidelines
Review of Electronic
Resources for Cancellation
the purpose of this policy, electronic resources are defined as
monographic or serial resources, whether full-text or citation only,
purchased or free, which require computer access. These resources may be
selected as self-contained works (e.g. e-book, e-journal, online
database, Web site) or as part of a larger collection or package.
Wichita State University Libraries subscribes to electronic resources in
support of the educational needs of students, faculty and staff of the
University. This policy provides general guidelines for the selection,
review, approval, acquisition, cataloging, and de-selection of
is important to note that the selection of electronic resources presents
unique challenges not encountered with traditional library materials.
When purchased, electronic resources raise complicated issues involving
networking, pricing, licensing, access and ownership, archiving, and
rapidly changing technologies. The selector is required to work closely
with other selectors, the Coordinator of Collection Development, and
staff in other departments – especially Acquisitions and Cataloging.
to the high cost of electronic resources subscriptions, the Coordinator
of Collection Development and the appropriate Subject Librarian(s)
strive to make the most cost-effective and balanced purchase
recommendations and decisions based on institutional needs. A major goal
of acquiring electronic resources is the provision of access both on and
off campus in the most affordable manner possible.
Library’s current collection development policies for specific subject
areas provide specific guidelines for the selection of library materials
and information resources in all formats including electronic resources
and can be found at:
Library will pursue partnerships in cooperative acquisitions and
cost-sharing both within and outside of the WSU Libraries including
consortia such as the Kansas Regents Libraries Database Consortium, ESIG,
BCR, Amigos, and Minitex.
policy relates to the following types of e-resources:
abstracting, and full-text article databases, e.g. PsycINFO,
Expanded Academic ASAP
policy is available as a General Policy on the WSU Libraries Collection
Development home page at http;//library.wichita.edu/colldev/cdpolicies.htm.
General Selection Criteria for All Electronic Resources
Subject matter covered is clearly relevant to the curriculum and
research needs of the primary WSU community, e.g. students, faculty and
staff, as specified in the collection development policy for the subject
electronic resource provides:
content at the
appropriate intellectual level
coverage and quality of information for user population
content from a
reputable, reliable, and authoritative producer
accurate, unique, and complete information and updates
accessibility to information over other formats
Access to the electronic resource should include the following:
by IP address (rather than passwords or logins), e.g. the Class B
subnet for campus-wide access is 156.26.*.*
with the Library’s existing proxy server and software, E-Z Proxy
number of simultaneous users is unlimited. If not unlimited, the
number of simultaneous users must be adequate
and Southside Centers considered authorized sites
staff, students, and walk-in users defined as authorized users
following should be avoided:
any other methods of individual authentication or authorization,
unless 1) optional, e.g. allowing users to voluntarily create
profiles for notification of new content or 2) passwords may be
posted online for authenticated users
Use and Functionality
Electronic resources should adhere to conventional user expectations
of browsing and/or full-text searching
of on-screen help and/or tutorials
messages (i.e., error message indicates specific problem(s) and
provides possible alternatives)
of value-added features such as multimedia and hyperlinks to and
from other databases
print, save, and email results and/or articles
preferred for access at title level
appropriate, resources should be selected where the intellectual content
of material is maintained in some form on a permanent basis. The
following issues should be considered when selecting a resource:
commitment to archiving
for archiving (publisher, vendor, or library)
form of archive
cancellation or termination on maintaining the archive
required to maintain archive
considering the replacement or duplication of a print subscription by an
electronic resource, the following issues should be considered:
to funding one or the other or both
general, electronic bibliographic databases will not be duplicated in
print except under special circumstances, e.g. exclusion of critical
content in electronic version. At this time, the addition of an
e-journal may or may not result in the cancellation of the equivalent
print subscription. Print subscriptions are only canceled when cost
effective and based on the recommendation of the Subject Librarian and
the Coordinator of Collection Development with input from departmental
faculty. E-books for the general and reference collection may be
duplicated in print based on user needs.
Pricing and Cost Considerations
considering the selection of an electronic resource, the following
guidelines related to pricing and cost should be met:
cost-effective in both core content and updates
able to sustain cost for the foreseeable future
usage and/or uniqueness of information justifies cost
is acceptable (e.g. one-time versus annual costs)
following restrictions or situations should be avoided:
pricing unless lock in reasonable increases over time
non-cancellation clauses unless accompanied by inflation cap and
electronic publications, e.g. can be purchased as package, but not
availability of an electronic resource through consortium purchase
should be considered first as such a purchase might be more
cost-effective than an institutional purchase.
multi-year agreement should be considered when appropriate as it may be
more cost-effective than a one-year agreement.
Whenever possible, the pricing model should be based on student FTE.
WSU’s official student FTE is reported on the Kansas BOR Web site at
following should be considered when selecting a resource:
provides responsive customer service and technical support that is
available during library working hours
and quality of training programs
reputation and business record suggests continued support for the
product via updates or new versions
is thorough and clear
Meet usual and
customary technical standards in the industry
local customizations via system administration access for the
with the Library’s existing and/or future hardware
with standard web browsers if accessible via the web
Usage statistics should be readily available in a user-friendly format,
preferably COUNTER compliant (http://www.projectcounter.org)
Special Selection Criteria for Electronic Journals
subscription to or purchase of an electronic journal will be considered
format offers value-added enhancements to make it preferable over,
or a significant addition to, its print equivalent. Examples of such
enhancements include wider access, flexibility in searching, and
It contains or
covers the equivalent information compared to the print format.
electronic version is cost-effective (e.g., the cost differential is
justified by demonstrated or expected increase in use) and provides
greater access to users
through IP authentication to unlimited simultaneous users
for individual registration or passwords should be avoided unless
passwords can be posted online for authenticated users. Profiles
voluntarily created by users for notification of new content are not
add journals with a significant run of issues or commitment to
making a significant number of issues available electronically
of electronic journals should not be added
Make note of
time limits on access to back issues
of content published prior to initial subscription date
journal is acquired in the electronic format, the Subject Librarian and
Coordinator of Collection Development (in conjunction with input from
appropriate Library staff and departmental faculty) should determine if
the print equivalent should be canceled.
Special Selection Criteria for E-Books
general, the same selection criteria apply to electronic books as to
books in print. E-books for the general and reference collections should
be selected according to the appropriate subject collection development
policy. Except under special circumstances, all e-books should be of a
scholarly nature and supportive of the teaching and research mission of
E-books may be purchased individually or part of a bundled package, e.g.
BCR netLibrary collections. They may be purchased by WSU on its own or
as part of a consortium purchase, e.g. BCR or RLDC. In either case,
Subject Librarians (individually or through one of the subject Reference
Collection Development Committees) will review the titles in their areas
and make final purchase recommendations. For the purchase of a bundled
collection, a majority of Subject Librarians must support the purchase.
this time, an e-book may be selected without regard as to whether or not
the title is currently held or being considered for purchase in print.
An individual title may be purchased in print, electronic, or both
formats as long as it meets appropriate selection criteria.
following additional criteria for selecting e-books should be
Consistency with print version, e.g. complete text with all tables,
IP-authenticated access – either one user at a time or multiple
simultaneous users (registration requirements, passwords, etc.
should be avoided unless the passwords can be posted online for
Ability to download and print at least some limited content
Clearly understood rights to permanent access to the book, e.g.
access in perpetuity versus annual subscription; outright purchase
of books versus lease of content
Clearly understood pricing structure, e.g. one-time payment, annual
subscription fee, or both
Individual purchase or part of bundle or package
Special Selection Criteria for Free Web-Based Resources
Selection of free web-based resources should follow the general
guidelines for selecting all electronic resources, e.g. according to the
appropriate subject collection development policy, of a scholarly
nature, and supportive of the teaching and research mission of the
University. However, due to the number of free resources available and
often without print counterparts or longevity, additional criteria are
content should be significant.
Quality of the
Web site should be indicated by peer review, review by other
librarians, an authoritative sponsor or producers, and evidence of
ongoing support (e.g. creation of archives, mirror sites, etc.
of effective support for browsing or searching. Relatively easy to
access to multiple simultaneous users
registration and/or licensing are required, licenses must be
submitted for approval through formal review process.
selected as reference resources should meet the same selection
criteria as resources that are purchased.
is appropriate for addition to the WSU Libraries Online Catalog.
following free Web-based resources are not appropriate for selection:
resources available on a free-trial basis for limited period of time
require individual user registration or click through license
Password-protected Web sites available to single users, e.g. links
publicized in print textbooks
Requesting New Electronic Resources
Generally, new electronic acquisitions are requested by Subject
Librarians through the Electronic Resources Review process in Collection
Development. Final approval is given by the Coordinator of Collection
Development and the Library Administration, when appropriate.
consultation with faculty, liaisons, appropriate library staff and
others (as needed), the Subject Librarian will consider whether or
not the product meets the selection criteria outlined in the
Electronic Resources Collection Development Policy.
Development will request pricing for the product and investigate
consortial purchase options.
Development will request a trial of the product, and all trials
should be coordinated through the Coordinator of Collection
Development. This will ensure that the trial is appropriately timed
and publicized when necessary.
consultation with faculty, liaisons, appropriate library staff and
others (as needed), the Coordinator of Collection Development will
solicit feedback and evaluate the product based on the trial.
Based on cost,
perceived need, usage, the degree to which the electronic resource
meets the selection criteria, and the priorities set by the Subject
Librarians during the review process, the Coordinator of Collection
Development, in consultation with the Library Administration, will:
1) decide whether or not to acquire and 2) if a decision to acquire
is made, prioritize its purchase in relation to other electronic
resources requested within budgetary constraints.
the decision has been made to purchase an electronic resource, the
Coordinator of Collection Development reviews the license agreement,
submits it to the University Counsel for review, and negotiates changes
with the vendor/publisher. When negotiating license agreements, the
Library keeps the interests of the user in mind and refrains from
purchasing products where use restrictions would seriously impede
research or be impossible to enforce.
The following elements should be part of license agreements except under
indication that content is either licensed or purchased outright
resources covered by license
authorized users includes WSU faculty, staff, students, and walk-in
authentication as method of access
Minimal or no
limitations on ILL and course pack use when appropriate
and Cataloging Guidelines
acquisition, cataloging, and withdrawal guidelines are under review by
Collection Development and Technical Services with the hiring a new
Electronic Resources Librarian in Technical Services in 2007. When the
guidelines are finalized, they will be added to this document.
Review of Electronic Resources for Cancellation
subscription to a product may be cancelled if:
statistics are consistently low over a significant period of time.
The product is
no longer cost-effective.
provided is no longer meeting the needs of WSU users.
or better product becomes available either as an individual purchase
or as a consortium purchase.
fails to hold up their end of the agreement and/or provides poor
price inflates such that it no longer is considered affordable.
The product’s content is found to duplicate content in another
A new vendor can deliver a superior product, including a more
user-friendly search interface, providing greater and more reliable
access at a reasonable cost, or meet other key criteria not met by a
Prepared by Cathy Moore-Jansen, Coordinator of Collection Development,