Geography Collection Development Policy


I. Academic Programs Served

A. The principal academic programs affected by the quality of the University Libraries’ holdings in the field of geography and its component disciplines originate in the Departments of Geography and Geology, as well as in courses offered in environmental studies by various sections of the College of Education as part of their teacher certification specializations. In addition the Department of Geography also participates in the interdisciplinary minors in African American studies, environmental management systems, Latino/Latin American Studies, South East Asian studies and urban studies.

B. The degrees granted under the aforementioned programs and curricula are the Bachelors of Arts and Bachelors of Science in Geography, the Bachelor of Science in Meteorology, and the Masters of Science in Geography (which also includes an emphasis in Meteorology).

C. The Department of Geography plans to continue to

II. Clientele

The core group for whom an in-depth and current collection in geography is a requisite for the undergraduate and graduate students and faculty of the Department of Geography. Participants in the aforementioned interdisciplinary minors and students in related courses in the Department of Geology and the College of Education, as well as general students seeking to fulfill their distribution of studies requirement also form part of this user group.

III. General Policy Considerations

The general collection development policy considerations for geographic materials within the University Library will be coordinated with those of related disciplines within the hard and social sciences to ensure effective use of limited fiscal resources.

A. The language of collection in this discipline shall be exclusively English, excepting only cartographic materials in both electronic and paper formats which may be acquired or linked to by the University Libraries or purchased under the Map Library collection development policy appended hereto.

B. Emphasis shall be placed upon keeping the collection as current as possible; accordingly, materials published after 1990 shall be preferred, with older imprints acquired on an individual basis.

C. The areas of Africa, Latin America, North America, and East and South East Asia will be given priority.

D. Priority will be given to research monographs and technical papers in hard copy format for all subfields of geography. Electronic resources will be evaluated as they appear and be acquired via the established review and evaluation procedures for this type of resource within the University Libraries .

E . As the output of North American university and trade presses in the component fields of geography and related earth sciences is well covered by the University Libraries approval plan profile, emphasis will be placed on obtaining monographs from sources within the discipline.

IV. Collecting Levels

For the discipline of geography, general works on the field will be acquired at the basic study level (3a), as this component of the collection can be adequately handled by the purchase of updated editions of standard titles or newly issued survey volumes; this will allow for use by both the general reader and students wishing to augment the coverage provided by their assigned texts, the latter of which will not be acquired by the University Libraries. For the five core fields of hydrology, cartography, soils science, meteorology, and natural and environmental systems, acquisition will be done at the advanced study and/or research levels (3c/4), depending on the composition of the individual literatures of the sub-disciplines, the volume of publishing (in both paper and electronic formats) and the shifting research priorities of the faculty, graduate and upper-level undergraduate students of the Department of Geography and related fields. Emergent areas of study within geography will be developed to the degree they become integrated into the overall departmental curriculum and the discipline as a whole. Internet access to website resources in geography and its sub-disciplines will be added to the holdings of the University Libraries subject webpage as available and may be removed if the site is not maintained or ceases to exist. Electronic data sets will not be acquired, as the University Libraries server is not adequate to house or maintain such products; however, information on said datasets if available on campus will be provided to the public on the University Libraries web page for geography. Databases in any of the sub-disciplines of geography (whether commercially or privately produced) may be added to the holdings of the University Libraries by subscription after review, provided the access formats for said data are compatible with existing hardware/software configurations and any licensing agreements do not violate established legal limitations of the University.

V. Other Resources

The Department of Geography contains the Cartography Laboratory and the Map Library, the latter a branch of the University Libraries system. The data sets utilized by the Laboratory are provided by federal and other governmental sources and thus are not subject to the provisions of this policy. (A separate collection development policy for the Map Library is appended to this document.)

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