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Library Procedures

Collection Management Procedures

Selection Responsibility

Library staff will work closely with academic faculty to determine what items best meet classroom objectives and/or student needs using the selection guidelines listed below. 

The Division Director makes the final determination on the selection, replacement, and/or removal of all materials, and is responsible for the implementation of these procedures.

Selection Guidelines

The department mission statement provides the framework for the selection process.

Selection aids and tools such as professional journals, bibliographies, and publishers’ catalogs will be used to identify materials for consideration.

Specific considerations in choosing individual materials include some or all of the following:

  • Support of mission statement
  • Appropriateness for undergraduate use
  • Support for class assignments
  • Support for core courses
  • Recommendations by faculty, staff and students to support classroom instruction
  • Strength of present holdings in subject
  • Cost
  • Suitability of format
  • Authoritativeness of author and/or reputation of publisher
  • Timeliness or permanence of the material
  • Classic in subject area
  • Appearance of the title in bibliographies or indexes

Materials not normally purchased are:

  • Textbooks for courses offered at WNC
  • Graduate level materials
  • Books in languages not taught at the college
  • Popular fiction
  • Highly specialized research & technical materials
  • Specialized materials available in local area Nevada libraries
  • Test books

The majority of selections are current, English language, publications.

Special Collections

Nevada Collection

Selection criteria for the Nevada collection include:

  • Materials by Nevada authors that contain significant content about Nevada.
  • Items specifically about the state of Nevada.
  • Works of fiction that either take place in Nevada or pertain to Nevada will be reviewed by library staff to determine the suitability for inclusion in the collection.
  • Books published by the University of Nevada Press will be reviewed individually to determine if they meet the criteria to be included in the collection.
  • Faculty, staff, and student requests for materials that meet the above selection criteria and are otherwise determined to support the purpose of the collection.

Children’s Collection

Selection criteria for the Children’s Collection include:

  • Caldecott Award winning books and selected honor books
  • Newbery Award winning books and selected honor books
  • Michael L. Printz Award winning books and selected honor books
  • Other children’s and young adult award winning books chosen by the American Library Association or the Nevada Library Association
  • Children’s and young adult books that are generally considered classics in their respective genres
  • Faculty, staff and student requests for materials that meet the above selection criteria and are otherwise determined to support the purpose of the collection.

Bill Cowee Poetry Collection

The Bill Cowee Poetry Collection is a special collection donated by Bill Cowee to the WNC Library in 2007. The collection is composed of books from Mr. Cowee’s private collection and represents poetry from around the world and in various poetic styles, with an emphasis on poetry from the Western United States and Nevada.

  • Books in this collection that are either lost or damaged beyond repair will be replaced; this only applies to materials contained in the original donation.
  • Selected books of poetry from Nevada or regional authors will be added to the collection at the discretion of the library staff, contingent on the approval of the Director of Learning and Innovation.
  • Books added to the collection will be designated in the catalog record and on the book plate as not being included in the original donation. Added materials are subject to regular deselection and replacement criteria.


Specific considerations in selecting digital databases include some or all of the following:

  • Review of usage statistics for each database
  • Evaluation of the quality of content, breadth of the collection, duplication of titles and subject areas, uniqueness of titles and subjects, and the ease of navigation of the user interface
  • Review of changes in the curriculum and course offerings at the college
  • Evaluation through standard professional reviewing sources
  • Review of cost factors and availability of databases through statewide purchasing agreements


Given the movement of materials to online formats, in most instances the library will no longer accept gift books. Exceptional gifts, such as those with historical significance, will be evaluated on a case by case basis by the Director of Learning and Innovation after review by library staff. All gifts and donations, unless otherwise specified by written agreement, are subject to the same selection and deselection criteria as the rest of the collection materials. 

Collection Maintenance and Evaluation

The WNC Library withdraws outdated and damaged materials to maintain the quality and currency of the collection in a process known as “weeding” or “deselection.” The collection is monitored for outdated material, which is replaced or withdrawn. Individual sections of the general collection are reviewed on a continual basis. Faculty members are encouraged to assist in identifying outdated or inaccurate materials in their areas of expertise.

General criteria for withdrawing materials includes:

  • Materials that are outdated or contain inaccurate information
  • Materials that are not circulating and are not considered to be classics
  • Duplicate copies that do not have a high level of circulation
  • Older editions of a title that are not needed for historical reasons
  • Materials that no longer meet a curriculum need or relate to a program or course that is no longer offered at the college
  • Damaged or worn material that can no longer be repaired


The WNC Library follows the guidelines in the WNC Policy on the Use of Copyrighted Materials (3-2-8). All materials added to the library collection and available for use in the library must be compliant with copyright law or be in the public domain.
Any material considered for the library collection that compliant with copyright law, or not in the public domain, will be not be added unless written permission is given to the library from the copyright holder.

Intellectual Freedom

The WNC Library and its staff uphold the principles of the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights and the Association of College and Research Libraries’ Intellectual Freedom Principles for Academic Libraries.

In the spirit of open and academic discourse, the library endeavors to select materials that represent a wide variety of opinions, viewpoints, and perspectives. If the appropriateness or value of any material is challenged, the objections must be submitted in writing to the Director of Learning and Innovation before any action will be taken on a complaint.