The mission of the Emma Waters Summar Library is to provide comprehensive and current academic resources and services to support the educational initiatives of the Union University community. Its focus is on facilitating and improving the learning process for the student and on supporting the instructor in achieving the goals of the instructional program. This emphasis is achieved by addressing quality, subject content, formats, and appropriateness of instructional materials to implement and strengthen the curriculum and to stimulate independent study and freedom of thought.
A primary function of the library is to provide the faculty, staff and students of the university with those materials needed for current teaching and research programs. One valuable function is to provide for general informational needs as well as sufficient breadth and depth of materials to assist those many self-directed and independent studies which are not spelled out in the educational curricula and formal research and degree programs. The library, further, must be informed of forthcoming research and degree programs since certain lead time is necessary to acquire materials which will be needed. For this reason, it is essential that professional librarians be actively involved in the planning of any curriculum which requires library resources.
The collection development policy must also take into consideration the fact that Summar Library is part of a national network of libraries through the Online Computer Library Center, Inc. (OCLC) and the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LM). The Library also provides electronic resources, including the Internet and full-text databases. The total publishing output of the world has reached such proportions that it is beyond the reach of any library, including the largest national and research libraries, to obtain all materials needed. Consequently, Summar Library utilizes interlibrary loan for borrowing infrequently used materials that are not available at Union.
Definition of Library Resources Library resources are defined as print and nonprint instructional materials (e.g., books, periodicals, pamphlets, manuscripts, print and graphic microforms, maps, sound and visual recordings, computer software and text, etc.) organized and housed for retrieval and use by the members of the university community to fulfill the mission and functions of the university and its curriculum. It is the responsibility of Summar Library to:
Criteria for Selection of Materials General Standards and Instructional materials shall:
Responsibility for the selection of library materials for the university lies with the entire university community. However, each academic department selects a Faculty Representative who works with the professional librarians in requesting materials. Professional librarians, serving as Library Faculty Liaisons, advise and collaborate with the Faculty Representatives in the building of the collection for departments assigned to them. The departmental Faculty Representative is responsible for overseeing and coordinating requests for purchase to the library. Faculty members are largely responsible for recommending the acquisition of materials in their subject fields. Any member of the faculty may request that an item be added to the library by completing a request form and submitting it through the departmental faculty representative, to the Collection Development Coordinator for books, media, recordings, and scores; and to the Electronic Resources Librarian for periodicals, newspapers, and databases. Departments are expected to recommend library purchases which will develop the entire field of their disciplines.
Such book and media purchases will be charged to those portions of the budget allocated to that department. There are no departmental allocations for periodicals or electronic resources although every attempt will be made to provide materials fairly in all subject areas as budget funds allow. These materials are purchased on request as budget funds are available. Students, staff, and administrative officers may also submit recommendations to the appropriate professional librarian for purchase. Because the professional librarians are in the best position to observe the quality and balance of all subject areas and because the professional librarians are ultimately responsible for the overall quality and balance of the entire collection, they will select and purchase materials in all subject areas. Any difference in opinion regarding purchase of library resources will be resolved by the Director of the Library and the Provost.
In order to ensure rigorous discrimination in the selection of materials, reliance should be placed upon standard scholarly bibliographies reflecting the aim of the university and supporting general fields of knowledge rather than specialized research requirements. The use of publishers’ announcements, commercial catalogs, and other nonselective sales oriented lists may be used to supplement traditional review materials.
Current Materials v. Retrospective Materials
While both current and retrospective materials are essential to the needs of the academic community, current materials shall generally receive higher priority. Lesser.used retrospective materials shall be sought from existing external sources, such as other Jackson area libraries, national databases, and interlibrary loan (ILL) services. Current materials are defined as those in print in the original editions; retrospective materials are defined as those which are out.of.print or available only in reprinted editions.
Out-of-print materials are more readily available today via the Internet, and they will be purchased on a case-by-case basis. While the emphasis will be on current materials, out-of-print materials may be sought for a historical perspective or for their influence in the development of the subject or individuals. Because these materials are usually more expensive and carry greater shipping costs, the shipping costs incurred will be charged to the allocation for which the material was charged.
Foreign Language Materials
With the exception of materials acquired primarily for use of students and faculty in the foreign language department, books or other materials in languages other than English will not be acquired. Exceptions to this policy will be foreign language dictionaries for reference use and other foreign language materials determined to be necessary by the Director of the Library in consultation with faculty.
The library provides a collection of children’s books to support the teacher education program. The Juvenile Collection seeks to be a representative collection of various types of children’s literature, both fiction and nonfiction. This collection is cataloged using the Dewey Decimal Classification system since this system is used by most school libraries. Juvenile titles may be accessed via the online catalog. Newbery, Caldecott, as well as certain selected Michael Printz and Coretta Scott King, Medal winners will be acquired annually. Selection tools for choosing examples of various categories of children’s literature will be used to determine titles for acquisition.
The library does not acquire copies of textbooks which students are expected to purchase for classroom use. Other college.level textbooks of general survey nature may be purchased when no other suitable material is available.
Rare books will be purchased as they are required to fulfill the mission and goals of the university and its curriculum. Such purchases will not receive high priority when budgets are inadequate.
Popular Fiction and Nonfiction
While the library has a responsibility to encourage leisure reading, budget limitations will normally require that current, non.course.related popular fiction and nonfiction have a low priority for purchase. A small allocation for this type of literature will be maintained and used as funds are available.
Generally only one copy of an item will be purchased. However, multiple copies of materials may be purchased when the need for such copies can be demonstrated by use or extenuating circumstances.
Paperback v. Hardbound Editions
In cases where materials will have long-term value and receive heavy use, hardbound editions will be purchased. If materials are judged to be of transitory usefulness, if a hardbound edition is not available, or if hardbound editions are judged to be prohibitive in price, paperback editions will be considered. The Director of the Library will determine which format will be ordered. For example, art books typically will be purchased in hardbound format because of the paper and color normally used or will be sent to the bindery if no hardbound copy is available. The library will opt for publisher library binding or hardbound copies for the Juvenile Collection. If neither format is available, paperback copies purchased will be sent to the bindery before its addition to the collection.
Library emphasis will be placed on study scores rather than performance scores, which should be purchased by individuals or departments. Whenever possible, scores as originally composed, rather than arrangements or reductions, are selected. The library’s policy is to complement a score with a recording to enable the patron to listen and follow the score at the same time.
Dissertations and Theses
The library will not acquire dissertations for an individual’s use. However, dissertations will be acquired for instructional purposes upon faculty recommendations. The library will accept as a gift one copy of a dissertation by a faculty member of Union. This copy will be cataloged and will become part of the regular monograph collection. Graduate and Honors theses and dissertations of Union University students will become part of the reference collection.
New Print Serials, Subscriptions, and Newspapers
Current journals and other periodicals usually provide the most up-to-date information in a subject and are valuable resources for in-depth study and research. Because serials and subscriptions represent an ongoing expense for purchase and storage/shelving, extra scrutiny will be exercised before approving titles. The availability of the material through ILL or computerized databases will be a consideration. The new serial or subscription will not be started unless it is decided that it will receive substantial use. Back runs of qualifying serials or subscriptions will be purchased only as is deemed necessary and as budgets permit.
The library in general will attempt to acquire:
Special policies will be observed for the following types of serials:
Recommendations for periodical subscriptions will be subject to the following considerations:
Newspapers will be purchased to reflect local, state, and national coverage. The library subscribes to a number of current newspapers in hard copy format as a current awareness service for certain courses and as a public service. Hard copy back files of The Jackson Sun are maintained for approximately two months.
Indexes, Databases, and Bibliographies
The library is committed to providing access to external resources and the efficient use of internal resources. To this end the library maintains current and retrospective collections of indexes, databases, and bibliographies to support the educational, informational, and research needs of the university community. The library will maintain a core collection of broad, general indexing and abstracting services and more specialized services in certain selected fields of study.
When appropriate these services will be made available in electronic format. In addition, the library will maintain subscriptions in a broad range of external information databases. Recommendations for the subscription or purchase of these types of material will be subject to the following considerations:
When possible, the library will purchase material in formats other than multi.media or mixed media kits. However, these kits may be acquired when no other format is available, provided the library has the proper viewing and/or playback equipment and the materials are needed for specific course assignments.
The library will purchase audio recordings in the following categories:
The library will acquire, on a selective basis, both management and instructional software for computers. The library will only purchase software designated for computers it owns. It is the library’s desire to provide a range and quality of services which will support, enhance, and promote the academic program of the university. It also recognizes that the emergence of new information technologies is reshaping the way both classroom instruction and research take place. Therefore, in keeping with the library’s service commitment and the changing environment of learning it will seek to provide resources and services in the newer electronic formats where these are deemed to be most appropriate. Recommendations for materials or services in these formats will be subject to the following considerations:
The electronic collection is intended to expand the library’s traditional holdings by collecting resources that will add value to the existing holdings and provide remote access to research materials. This category of library materials may include:
Fee-based electronic resources should be relevant and appropriate to a significant number of the library’s users, support the current academic curriculum and research needs, and provide sufficient added value over other formats in either content or cost. Duplication of resources in print and electronic versions will only be considered under special-needs circumstances. In general, preference will be shown for an online format of materials that will allow either campus-wide or off-campus access by remote users.
Cost of the resource must be sustainable by the library’s budget for the foreseeable future. Preference will be given to resources that might be obtained via consortial arrangements with Lyrasis, TICUA, ACL, WeTALC, Waldo or other appropriate organizations.
Fee-based electronic resources are reviewed and reassessed before renewal. A resource may be withdrawn from the collection when:
Replacement of Library Materials
Replacement copies for lost, damaged, or worn items will be purchased following evaluation by the Directory of the Library and the availability of budget funds.
Preservation of Library Materials
The library will purchase hardback format, rather than paperback, if available and cost appropriate, to preserve the collection. Every effort is made to repair damaged or worn books internally; outside bindery services will be used sparingly following evaluation by a librarian. The choice of the most suitable preservation treatment for a given item is based on many factors including the item's long-term value to the collection, its physical condition, circulation record, and the availability of a replacement. When continued use is anticipated or long-term retention is appropriate, items may be sent to the bindery for rebinding.
In order to maintain the print serials in the collection, the Director of the Library and the professional librarians reserve the right to decide which serials in the collection should be held for long-term retention, determine whether items are worthy of lasting preservation and ongoing replacement. Serials deemed to have short-term value or expired value may only be held for limited periods of time (i.e. one year). The University’s mission and educational initiatives will be a significant determining factor in evaluating retention of library materials. Preservation methods may include binding, electronic archiving, or microfiche.
The same collection development policies outlined above will be used to provide materials for the Union University campuses outside of Jackson, TN, taking into account the student population (primarily adult, commuter, and graduate) and the amount of physical space available. A greater emphasis will be placed on electronic products which are related to specific programs maintained on that campus.
Summar Library is committed to responsible academic freedom as stated in the Union University’s Faculty Handbook:
Union University affirms its continuing policy of maintaining conditions of free inquiry, thought and discussion for every member of the faculty in professional activities of teaching, performance, research, publication, and public speaking. From the Bible we learn that “Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” Union University believes that there is no conflict between the Christian commitment to biblical truth and the proper exercise of academic freedom. Academic freedom encompasses faculty, students, and administration. It is a freedom that has privileges, responsibilities, and benefits. (Faculty Handbook, 2009-2010 edition, p. B-8)
Summar Library respects the opinion of any member of the university community toward any library materials and any comments, whether positive or negative, will be reviewed.
Request for Reconsideration of Library Material
The Summar Library welcomes gifts of appropriate materials or funds for the purchase of materials, recognizing that gifts may provide valuable additions to the library collection. Donated materials are expected to meet the same standards of quality and relevance to the collection as new titles. They should support the curriculum and the mission of the library as well as meet the collection development guidelines and policies, in regard to physical condition, format, language, etc.
Donated works by faculty and/or alumni authors are also welcomed and will be added to the collection unless these works do not meet the criteria outlined in the Collection Development Policy or they are inappropriate for an academic library. Final decisions on the retention and disposition of gifts are the responsibility of professional librarians and the Director of the Library. The library reserves the right to make decisions about the disposition or location of gifts of materials or funds. The library also reserves the right to dispose of any gift materials that do not meet the library’s collection needs and policy guidelines.
Gifts not retained by the library may be given to academic departments, other libraries, state agencies, sold at book sales, or discarded. The professional library staff is responsible for decision making regarding the disposal of unneeded gifts.
The library does not appraise or attach monetary value to any gift title or collection based on the guidelines of the Association of College and Research Libraries. An appraisal, if desired by the donor, should be done prior to the presentation of this material to the library. However, all donors will receive an acknowledgment letter from the library with the number of titles donated. The Union University Foundation handles monetary gifts for the library as well as funds for the purchase of memorial titles. This office also handles donations of rare or valuable materials.