Selection Process


Collection development at Mount Saint Vincent University is a shared responsibility. Selections are made by both librarians and teaching faculty. In addition, Patron Driven Acquisition (PDA) provides access to a wide range of electronic books not owned by the Library, but available for loan by any student registered at Mount Saint Vincent University.

For further information please refer to The Role of MSVU Liaison Librarians, Departmental Library Coordinators, and Faculty Selectors.

The collection development librarian and the liaison librarians assigned to disciplinary areas are responsible for the general balance and quality of the collection. For that reason, the librarians may select or recommend for selection materials in all disciplines.

The sources used by the librarians for selection include the following:
John Coutts OASIS

Midwest Library Service

Baker & Taylor YBP Library Services

publishers catalogues and brochures
reviews from Choice, New York Times Book Review, New York Review of Books, Times Literary Supplement, , Quill & Quire, , Library Journal, College and Research Libraries.
For Women’s Studies, reviews published in New Books on Women and Feminism and Women’s Review of Books may be consulted.

Departmental Allocation:

Approximately 18% of the acquisitions budget is used by the liaison librarians and faculty to acquire print monographs and print serial subscriptions appropriate to the curricular and research needs of each of 24 departments / programs offering courses of study at the University.

The acquisitions budget has separate lines for funding access to electronic resources.
All faculty may select books for the collection and may contact the liaison librarian assigned to her department at any time to address collection and service issues.

Faculty orders may be routed through the faculty coordinator or sent directly to the Library using either print or online forms. Once each academic year, the librarians meet the chairs and coordinators to review responsibilities, address concerns, and answer questions.

Special Acquisition Funds:

Since 1985 the deposit interest earned from a grant to the University by Petro-Canada has been dedicated to the purchase of materials related to gender studies and women’s studies. Petro-Canada’s contribution is recognized by a book plate for monographs acquired using the fund, and by a plaque displayed on the main floor of the E. Margaret Fulton Communications Centre. For further details, please refer to Petro-Canada Fund: Terms of Reference.

Learning and Leading Fund

This endowment had its origin in a capital campaign in which the Library was designated as a University service unit eligible for donor contributions. The fund may be used for the selection of books and audio-visual materials that are multi or inter-disciplinary in nature.

Education and Education PhD Funds

The Education Fund is provided to specifically support materials to support the BEd and Masters programs in Education. The Education PhD Fund is used for the acquisition of advanced research monographs in Education and related disciplines including materials on research methods and methodologies.

New Course Proposals:

The Collections & Archives Librarian prepares a report on library resources as stipulated in section 5.d. of the Guidelines for New Course Offerings (rev. May 1988) which reads as follows: “Library facilities: i) Has the bibliography been checked by the University Librarian? ii) Please enclose a copy of his comments. iii) State number of extra volumes / periodicals you expect to require. iv) Please state whether these are expected to be paid for from regular departmental allocations, or what other source of funding is available to you.”

On November 8, 1993 a Statement on Collection Responsibility was approved in principle by the Novanet Executive Committee:
“While it is generally understood that Novanet facilitates resource sharing among member universities, each library of Novanet considers the needs of its own students to be its first priority. The Novanet Committee on Collections Development wishes to establish as a principle that each library will maintain and acquire those core materials which are necessary to support the courses and programs offered at its institution. When determining the adequacy of library holdings for new courses and programs, Committee members will work with colleagues at other Novanet libraries to ensure that essential core materials are defined, and that the impact of new courses and programs at institutions where curricula/collections overlap is accurately assessed.
It is recommended that any new course or program proposal be considered jointly by the library and the curriculum committee or similar body at each institution.”

The Guide to Cooperative Collection Development (American Library Association, 1994) defines a core collection as “Those essential reference, study, and basic research materials required by a library to carry out its essential mission and objectives.”

revised: April 8, 2013