INF 7340: Collection Development and Selection of Materials

Credits: 3

Prerequisite: INF 6010, INF 6080

Rationale for inclusion in curriculum

Since a principal function of a library is to provide materials to meet the needs of its clientele and to support the organization's mission, the objective of this course is to provide philosophical and practical guidance in selecting and acquiring materials for library collections. The course will also treat the larger issues of collection management including evaluation, deselection, and preservation.

Learning outcomes

By the end of the course students will be capable of:

  1. Developing a plan for conducting an information needs assessment.
  2. Constructing policies for selection and collection development.
  3. Identifying and using reliable sources of information to locate and evaluate materials.
  4. Selecting appropriate reviewing sources and using them to make informed decisions.
  5. Evaluating and selecting materials in accordance with a policy statement.
  6. Evaluating and selecting materials with an awareness of how selection relates to intellectual freedom.
  7. Analyzing selection problems and suggesting solutions.
  8. Recognizing terms specific to publishing and production.
  9. Recommending an appropriate plan for collection evaluation.
  10. Describing the relation of copyright taws to collection development.
  11. Making preservation and conservation decisions.
  12. Determining the appropriate mix of print and digital format.
  13. Understanding the acquisitions process and the role of publishers and vendors.
  14. Practicing fiscal management in collection development procedures.


  1. Principles and policies in collection development
  2. Surveying the community that the library serves
  3. Collection development policy construction
  4. Intellectual freedom versus censorship - definitions and procedures
  5. Evaluation criteria – book, non-book, and digital materials
  6. Selection aids and information sources
  7. Issues and problems in selection
  8. The selection implications of publishing and distribution
  9. Preservation, conservation, and weeding
  10. Legal issues including copyright
  11. Cooperative purchasing and shared collections
  12. Impact of digital publishing
  13. Fiscal management

Course methodology

  1. Classroom and online lectures (instructor and guest speakers for classroom sections)
  2. Classroom and online discussions
  3. Reports and practical exercises
  4. Research paper  
  5. Final examination

Bases for evaluation of student performance

  1. Individual and group assignments (information needs assessment, collection development policy, materials selection)
  2. Research paper
  3. Final Examination


To be selected by lead instructor in consultation with other instructors.

Approved: 1/12

Updated: 8/13