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Library Collection Review Frequently Asked Questions

Collection Review FAQs 

  • Why is the Library reviewing the collection?
    • Collection evaluation is a crucial component to effective collection maintenance and development. This project will address issues of currency and usefulness to ensure a high-quality collection suitable to the University’s curriculum as well as the needs of faculty, staff, and students.
    • The demands for on-campus space are extremely high and additional storage space for low/no use materials is not a priority. The costs for off-campus storage and retrieval of are significant and would necessitate directing funds away from collection development.
  • What does the Library hope to accomplish?
    • To retain content with significant use.
    • To retain rare items and distinctive collections within the general print book collection regardless of their use.
    • To withdraw outdated and unused books.
  • Why is the Library withdrawing books?
    • Removing outdated and unused books increases the overall quality of the collection by making current scholarship and seminal works more visible.
    • While we have been doing selective weeding for several years, the Library’s redesign project has prompted us to embark on a comprehensive review of our circulating print book collection. We want to plan for an appropriate amount of space for this collection in the redesign project. Hopefully we can also allow for growth space based on the outcome of the review project.
    • As Villanova increases its scholarly profile on the national stage Falvey Library must ensure that the library’s collection reflects our position as a nationally ranked research university.
    • This process will also make visible gaps and weaknesses in the collection that will allow for better more targeted collection development in the future.
    • The University’s space assessment identifies a need for more student study spaces, and this need is supported by findings from student surveys conducted by Falvey Library. This project will allow us to determine optimal space requirements for our collections and services while creating more welcoming and user friendly spaces for students in the library.
  • What books will be withdrawn?
    • Materials in our special and archival collections are not part of this review project and will NOT be withdrawn.
    • We are withdrawing books without recent use, that have been in the collection for some time, and that can be easily obtained from other libraries if needed. One of the primary criteria for books being considered for deselection is that they were added to the collection prior to 2007 and have not circulated in the last 10 years.
    • We are withdrawing duplicate content (extra copies, older editions) when the volume of use doesn’t warrant retaining it.
    • All titles to be withdrawn are identified using data, vetted by the appropriate subject librarians, and available for faculty review.
  • What is going to happen to the books you remove?
    • The Library will give the withdrawn books to Better World Books which supports literacy programs around the world.
    • Faculty can request withdrawn books for their personal collections.
    • The Library will ensure that books that cannot be donated or used otherwise are responsibly recycled.
  • I missed the period for book review, can I still review the list from last month?
    • Unfortunately due to the large scale of this project the Library needs to adhere to a very strict schedule and the Library begins withdrawing books once the review period closes.
  • How have you communicated to faculty about this project?
    • Announcements were made on Campus Currents.
    • Announcements were made on the library website.
    • Liaison librarians emailed faculty in their departments.
    • Library Director presented to the Deans; to the College of Library Arts & Sciences August faculty meeting; and to the CLAS department chair meeting in September.
    • Library Director and Liaison Librarians are happy to come talk with departments about the project.
  • I still have questions. 


Last Modified: 2017-09-28 16:38:33