Guiding Principles for the Allocation of UT Libraries Information Resources
The University Libraries participates in the teaching, research, and public service programs of the university. To provide access to scholarly information, as noted in the Libraries mission statement, librarians acquire, organize, manage, and preserve information resources for access and use. UTK Libraries information resources include materials in a variety of formats. The collection is both local and remote. It is developed locally and in cooperation with consortial partners.
The UT Libraries collection is viewed as all information that the Libraries make available to its users. Some information resources are held locally, such as those purchased or licensed, while others are accessed remotely or borrowed. Some materials are acquired (e.g. articles through interlibrary loan, commercial delivery services, full text online), given to library users, and not retained for the local collection.
Allocation of funds for the University Libraries' information resources balances support for both curricular needs and research, taking into account the varied nature of disciplines. While a major portion of funding will continue to support printed books and journals, the electronic component of the collection is growing as the amount of scholarly information in electronic formats increases. In some cases, electronic information formats make searching easier (as in the case of indexes) and they contain information not available in print format (e.g.some electronic journals). Allocation of funds must encompass all of these format and access alternatives as we strive to realize the most value from collection resources.
The following principles guide decisions about the allocation of UT Libraries funds for information resources:
- The University Libraries Collection encompasses all information resources made available to library users. Development of the Collection focuses on needs of the library's primary clientele--UT students, faculty and staff--in support of instruction, research and public service.
- The local collection supports most curricular needs, but cannot meet all research needs for information resources. The ability to purchase or borrow resources is an essential complement to the in-house collection.
- Evaluation of periodical subscriptions is ongoing. New subscriptions, as well as cancellations, are contingent upon availability of funding.
- Materials for the collection are selected by subject librarians in consultation with academic departments and Research Services and Collections.
- Print is a primary format for the UT Libraries' collection. A major portion of funds for information resources is allocated to purchase printed monographs and journals.
- Decisions regarding funding for information resources are linked to services, staffing levels, facilities, and equipment. The Libraries' electronic resources policy guides decisions related to formats, viewing mechanisms, and service capabilities.
- Funding allocations support new directions in service, placing greater reliance on technology and integrating electronic information formats into daily routines and decision-making. The Libraries purchase access to information resources in electronic format when appropriate and feasible.
- Funds are allocated strategically to support the mission of the Libraries and the university. Some elements in our strategy are given in Principles 9-12 that follow.
- Allocation decisions consider factors that include program strengths; and data that are comparable across disciplines, such as local demographics, collection use, interlibrary loan reports, and publishing trends.
- Consideration of value for the cost of information resources is important. Such an approach attempts to compare the expected benefit of purchases with their cost and potential use.
- Allocations are made to subject areas without regard for endowed funds that may be designated to supplement state funding.
- Some funding is devoted to experimentation in accessing materials held remotely.
last updated 8/23/2007