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De-selection and Space Management Project

In 2014, the CSUEB Libraries will initiate a significant de-selection project that will remove unused books from the Libraries’ collection. The goal is to create a library collection and a library environment that better meets the needs of 21st century students and scholars. This project is in line with the systemwide project on print management (see brief here).

Why do we need a de-selection project?

The benefits of the de-selection project are as follows:

  • a more relevant, more focused collection for faculty and students
  • an opportunity to engage in greater highlighting and promotion of the materials we retain
  • library space that can be re-purposed for student learning – both individual and group study

The Libraries began building the collection with the founding of the University in 1957. At that time, librarians sought to acquire any materials which might be of potential use to students and faculty.  Since that time, the University’s curricular strengths and programmatic mission have changed.  In an effort to ensure that the collection continues to fully support the University’s curriculum with the most viable and useful titles, librarians periodically review their areas of the collection to make sure that they are focused and up-to-date.

Furthermore, today’s library users  increasingly rely on our electronic collections for their information needs as an alternative to our print collections. In 2012-2013, 797,633 articles were downloaded from the Libraries’ ejournals, approximately 62 articles per FTES, while 42,858 books were checked out from the Libraries’ print collection, approximate 6 books per FTES. The Libraries are expanding our ebook collection, which now includes over 117,000 titles.

Although it is not necessary to visit the Libraries in person to use our electronic collections, students continue to use the library buildings  in increasing numbers because it is an ideal location for individual and group study. Every year over the past four years, visits to the Libraries have increased drastically. In 2012-2013, there were 894,593 visits to the CSUEB libraries, approximately 69 visits for every student on campus.

Consequently, the de-selection project will allow the Libraries to manage our print collection to maintain its relevance and to make sure that we have space to develop attractive environments for student study and collaboration.

What will we de-select?

In 2013, we analyzed the print collection and created a list of books that meet all of the following criteria:

  • have never been circulated – ever
  • were published before 2003
  • are available to CSUEB students and faculty from other libraries in California  via LINK+ and Interlibrary Loan

Librarians will evaluate each title on this list to determine whether it is valuable enough for us to retain despite meeting these criteria.

How long will it take?

We anticipate that the project will take some time because we want to be sure there is adequate opportunity for library liaisons to evaluate titles on the list that may be retained in place of adding another book to the removal list.  We also  want to allow time for liaisons to consult with faculty in their departments while making these decisions.

What will we do with the books that we remove?

All de-selected titles will be sent to Better World Books where they can be bought for pennies and benefit charities around the world.

Additional Questions?

If you have any questions about this specific project or collection maintenance, please feel free to contact your department library liaison, or Co-Collection Librarians, Liz Ginno & Jeffra Bussmann, or John Wenzler, Dean of the Libraries.

Posted on 05.14.14

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