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Collection management policies and guidelines

Deselection of Physical Materials

De-selection (sometimes referred to as deaccessioning or weeding) of library materials is the process of identifying and removing items from the collection. It is essential for the maintenance of an active, academically useful library collection. 

Benefits to be gained through de-selection include maximizing the proportion of relevant materials on the shelves for the use of the diverse university community, and an increase in the availability of space for other collections and services.

Liaisons are responsible for maintaining the quality of the collection in their designated disciplines and should use their subject expertise to work together with Collections and Technical Services and coordinate de-selection. 

This policy does not specifically address the location of materials within the library branches or storage facilities though similar factors may come into play. 

De-selection decisions are made using flexible guidelines often requiring tradeoffs that demand perceptive judgment.  The following factors should be considered: 

  • Relevancy to the university's programs, taking into account that different programs may value the same materials differently.
  • Timeliness and currency of the information
  • Value for historical research
  • Uniqueness of the material
  • Superseded editions/volumes
  • Redundancy or multiple copies
  • Usage data
  • Physical condition
  • Obsolete technologies or formats
  • Greater accessibility in other formats or technologies
  • Formal commitments to retain physical materials 

Approved October, 11, 2022


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