Collection Development Policy

The Touro College Libraries are managed and developed according to a “Collection Development Policy” and a “Vision, Mission, & Strategic Plan”.  These derive from profession standards, guidelines, and criteria, with particular attention to the following.

  •  Standards for Libraries in Higher Education
  •  Guidelines for Branch Libraries in Colleges and Universities
  •  Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education
  •  Guidelines for Distance Learning Library Services


The primary goal of the Collection Development policy is to provide collections with as high possible a percentage of the resources needed by the college community. Resources include recorded information of all types and formats. The policy details a methodology for the continuing enhancement of collections of library resources which support and promote the College’s academic programs as expressed in its Mission Statement. The policy also encompasses fundamental support for faculty research. The ultimate goal of the collection development program is to ensure that the collections provide strong support for teaching and research.

The quality and character of our collections flow from a number of factors. They include close cooperation from the faculty in collection building and evaluation, remote extension site curriculum-based collections backed up by branch campus research-oriented collections, reliance on Web-based products to support distance and off-campus learning, and a flexible curriculum which emphasizes innovation, diversity, and self-directed study.

Selection Responsibility

Ultimate responsibility for the development and maintenance of our collections rests with the Director of Libraries, Associate Director of Libraries, and Chief Librarians who continually monitor professional literature for appropriate library acquisitions. The Association of College and Research Libraries’ Choice review cards serve as a selection tool for faculty library liaisons, and selections are solicited from other faculty in their respective areas of expertise.  All members of the faculty are also invited to consult Choice Reviews Online to identify relevant resources. Student and staff requests for the acquisition of resources are also encouraged and reviewed by the same standards as are requests from all other sources.  All members of the College are invited to Request Material Online to recommend new acquisitions.

Fund Allocation

The Director of Libraries is responsible for allocating library budget in such a way as to fulfill our collection development goals. The amount allocated for physical resources is based upon a collection development formula that reflects the numbers of FTEs per site and program, average cost of materials per academic field, and reliance on library resources by courses and disciplines. The amount allocated for virtual resource is based on the number of concurrent user licenses required so the College community will normally encounter no delay in accessing proprietary virtual sources.

Selection Guidelines

Evolving institutional goals and college library and professional association standards provide the framework for selections. We endeavor to meet the research requirement of the students and faculty. Quality of content and fulfillment of curricular needs are the first criteria against which any potential item is evaluated.

Some considerations in choosing individual items follow

  • Lasting value of content
  • Strength of present holdings in same or similar subject areas
  • Cost
  • Suitability of format to content

Other enforced guidelines follow

  • Textbooks, accompanying instructors’ manuals, student  guides and workbooks, laboratory manuals, and other auxiliary materials are not normally purchased. Textbooks are generally state-of-the-art surveys that tend to become  outdated rapidly and considered to be secondary sources of information written and arranged specifically for the purpose of instruction. Exceptions are made for textbooks that are recognized as standard reference and review sources, or represent the best source of information available on a subject. Old editions of textbooks, particularly in business, science, and the social sciences, are routinely discarded.
  • Duplicates are purchased only in cases of heavy use and if intra-library loan is insufficient.
  • Paperbacks are purchased and delivered with protective plastic covers whenever possible for economic reasons.
  • Lost or stolen materials are replaces if they are available and placed on reserve.
  • Foreign language materials are purchased only when used in the curriculum or understood by the College community.

Gifts and Donations

Gifts and donations are encouraged with the understanding that we may dispose of them or add them to the collections at our discretion, and in the same manner as purchased material.  We assume no responsibility for the appraisal of gift items, nor can we accept gifts under restricted conditions.

Collection Maintenance & Evaluation

Weeding is a necessary aspect of collection development. The Associate Director and Chief Librarians evaluate previous editions and withdraw those deemed outdated, and monitor reference collections for outdated material which is replaced or withdrawn. They continuously evaluate other resources against standard bibliographies, institutional requirements, and association standards to identify for withdrawal those that have outlived their usefulness.  Faculty members are also encouraged to assist in detecting outdated or inaccurate materials in their area of expertise.