General Collection Development Policy


The purpose of the Collection Development Policy is to provide guidance to librarians and faculty responsible for selecting materials for Wiggins Memorial Library's collections. Rising costs, increasing publisher output, new technologies and expanding demands for information necessitate careful materials selection, based on an understanding of the goals of the Wiggins Memorial Library and Campbell University and an understanding of the user population.

Collection Development Goals

  1. To identify, maintain, and provide access to resources that support the University curriculum.
  2. To identify, maintain, and provide access to a core collection that supports Campbell University's Mission.
  3. To identify, maintain, and provide access to resources that support the research needs of the Campbell University community.
  4. To collect, preserve, and provide access to archival materials related to the history of Campbell University.

Collection Development Responsibilities

The development of a collection that meets instructional, institutional, and research needs is the joint responsibility of the teaching faculty and librarians. The faculty is largely responsible for recommending orders of publications in their fields, while librarians order reference books or books in areas not covered by faculty orders. Department chairpersons will serve as or appoint a Library Representative. The Library Representative is responsible for approving all requests for purchasing library materials from the Department Allocation and submitting them to the library Acquisitions Assistant. In addition, a Library Liaison is assigned to each department/school to facilitate acquisitions and collection development. With the aid and advice of faculty and library staff and within budgetary restrictions, the Dean of the Library is ultimately responsible for the selection of all library resources. The Dean of the Library makes such decisions within the framework of the University's purpose and mission.

Collection Development Guidelines

Priority: Materials should be added to the collection following the priority listed below:
  1. Resources supporting the University curriculum
  2. Resources contributing to a balanced core collection
  3. Resources supporting the research needs of the Campbell University community
  4. Resources on topics of general interest
Language: Primarily English language materials. Exceptions are made for possible reference books such as dictionaries, items supporting a foreign language program, Greek and Latin texts for religion, or the reading needs of foreign students. Format Selection: Printed materials are normally collected in clothbound editions except when items are available only in paperback editions. Other factors affecting format selection decisions include, but are not limited to, cost, durability, ease of use, and the availability of electronic access. Multiple Copies: Requests for duplicate copies are discouraged unless there is a demonstrated need for duplicates or unless the items are primarily for reserve use. Collection Development Tools: Decisions in collection development are aided by the use of tools such as reviews from Choice Reviews Online sent regularly to each department/school, and other standard bibliographies, such as the Resources for College Libraries. The library, in carrying out its collection development activities, adheres to the principles expressed in the following statements from the American Library Association's Library Bill of Rights: "Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval."

Specific Types of Resources


The mission of the University Archives is to collect and preserve materials related to the history of Campbell University as well as material by or about persons that have played a significant role in the history of the institution. Materials will be collected in accordance with this mission. Such materials include, but are not limited to, faculty publications, theses and dissertations, University publications, departmental publications, personal papers, and artifacts and photographs related to the history of Campbell University.


Audiovisuals include videocassettes, DVDs, audio CDs and computer files. They are selected to support the University curriculum based on faculty recommendations, availability, and cost.

Electronic Resources

The library acquires electronic resources to support instruction and research. While traditional criteria apply to the selection of most electronic titles, the management of this format is more complex. Additional criteria to consider include:
  1. Spread of disciplinary coverage among selected titles
  2. Duplication of content with other products
  3. Appropriate retrospective and current coverage
  4. Currency of the information and update schedules
  5. Ease of use
  6. Access restrictions
  7. Licensing requirements
  8. Availability of usage statistics from the vendor

Government Documents

The Government Documents Department collects selected items available from the United States Government Printing Office. It was designated a selective federal depository on March 26, 1965, and operates within the guidelines found in The Instructions to Depository Libraries. Documents are generally selected on an annual basis in accord with the expressed needs of faculty, students, staff, and area residents.

Laboratory Manuals, Handbooks, etc.

Materials needed for constant use in the laboratory, classroom, or office, and which cannot be made generally accessible to library users are not collected by the library. Such materials should be purchased from departmental supply funds rather than the Library Allocation.


Maps are collected selectively to support general reference and research needs.


Microforms include both microfilm and microfiche. The selection of titles is generally limited to back files of periodicals and newspapers available only in microform.


Newspaper subscriptions are carried in order to support teaching and research, and to provide sources of local, national, and international news to the Campbell community. In addition to print subscriptions, newspaper titles are also available online through the library's database subscriptions.


Periodicals provide a wealth of current information and form a vital part of the collection in support of the curriculum. Titles are selected based on recommendations by faculty and library staff, their contents and cost. A limited number of general interest titles will also be collected. Careful judgment is required in establishing new periodical subscriptions, since periodicals represent an ongoing commitment of fiscal resources. When the costs are comparable, the electronic format of a title is preferred over the print format since it allows for wider access and greater searching capabilities. Backfiles may be maintained in print, microform, or electronic format depending on the availability, quality, and cost. Maintaining titles and/or backfiles in more than one format is generally discouraged and decisions are made on a title-by-title basis. The library reviews periodical subscriptions on an ongoing basis. Factors to be considered include: usage, the extent to which the title supports the curriculum, access options, cost, and availability.


Textbooks are not collected by the library because they rapidly go out of date and take up the space of the permanent resources of the library.