Collection Development Principles

Policy No: 024
Approval Date: 11/29/05
Historical Notes:


The New Mexico State University Library will have established, written collection development principles on which it acts.


The primary purpose of the Library's collection development program is to fulfill the University's ongoing needs for information resources that support its fundamental land grant university mission in teaching, research, and service. The program also expands and strengthens core resources; keeps resources current with advances in information technology; provides basic support for the information needs of the University's non-academic units; and partners with others in the research library community to facilitate exchange of scholarly information at the state, national, and international efforts.

The activities of the collection development program include the ongoing identification, selection, acquisition, and de-selection of current and retrospective materials, including gifts-in-kind, to build the Library's collections. Other activities include planning and instituting rational approaches to consistently provide access to information resources matching our users' needs, and conducting ongoing assessments of collections and resources to determine their suitability in meeting user needs.

Two overarching characteristics of New Mexico State University are transformation and change. It is these same characteristics that influence the development of collections and services within the library system. In doing so, the Library adapts as it responds both to changes in the university and to external changes. Therefore, its collection development practices must remain flexible enough to engage both the response to and anticipation of a changing society and its corresponding university community.


In order to maintain a successful collection development program, to provide current and useful description of the collection and to develop a structure for collection assessment projects:

  • Subject specialists are responsible for writing individual collection development statements, representing their assigned subject areas;
  • Collection development statements are submitted to the Collection Development Coordinator for approval;
  • The Collection Development Coordinator is responsible for sharing widely all collection development statements with the University community;
  • All interested parties are encouraged to provide input, as appropriate, in the development of collection development statements;
  • Collection development statements are revised regularly, optimally every 3 years.