University Libraries Collection Policies

Policy adopted August 1996

General Collection

The general collection should serve the needs of the Bowling Green State University community either through ownership of items, consortial agreements, or electronic access.  Current, seminal, and classic materials are added to the collection based on curricular needs, regardless of format. All selection decisions should make the most effective use of budget resources for the greatest number of users according to the priorities established by this policy.

Subject collection development statements provide detail and guidance for purchasing decisions for the general collection.

Statement of Purpose

In keeping with the mission for collection development, these pages set forth criteria and policies to use when selecting materials for the University Libraries’ collection.  This policy seeks to create a flexible framework for balancing abundant needs against scarce resources in a way that is both systematic and equitable as far as possible.

Mission Statement

To fulfill its part of the BGSU University Libraries’ mission, the Collection Development unit is charged with the building and preservation of effective, high-quality collections including electronic access to information. The unit will coordinate the selection and management of materials in electronic, print, and other formats to meet the current and long-term teaching, research, and administrative needs of the University community. Within the OhioLINK environment and in cooperation with other Ohio academic libraries, the Collection Development unit strives to optimize effective use of personnel and financial resources by balancing access and ownership considerations and by building on recognized collection strengths.


In keeping with Bowling Green State University’s curricular emphasis on multiculturalism, the University Libraries seek to provide materials representative of many cultures and ideas.

Cooperative Collection Development

Cooperation within OhioLINK

Cooperation among libraries delivers more information from a wider variety of sources than a single library can provide, permits better resource allocation, and leads to more intensive use of collections. Many resources are shared among Ohio colleges and universities via OhioLINK's online borrowing initiative. Electronic databases and other resources are made available to OhioLINK member institutions through consortium contracts. Collection development decisions regarding these shared electronic resources are made through the OhioLINK Cooperative Information Resources Management (CIRM) Committee, on which the Coordinator of Collections represents the University Libraries.

The University Libraries also contribute holdings information to the OhioLINK Central Catalog, will work through the CIRM committee to identify areas of collection strength and fully participate in OhioLINK statewide cooperative collection development initiatives. In general, the University Libraries avoid unnecessary duplication of available within OhioLINK.  Materials widely held within OhioLINK (6-8 or more copies) should receive careful evaluation before purchase.  This evaluation should include consideration of the importance of the work for curricular support; the number of copies available within OhioLINK and the time of the academic year; and other local needs.  Local purchase of items with large numbers of copies in OhioLINK is restricted to only highest priority items.  Conversely, purchases of materials held in no or very few OhioLINK libraries will not only meet local needs, but will enhance the diversity of OhioLINK holdings.

Cooperation With Other Libraries

An agreement between Bowling Green State University and the University of Toledo- Health Science Campus governs materials purchases for the joint nursing program: Bowling Green State University provides materials supporting the general education component and the University of Toledo - Health Science Campus supplies the specialized nursing materials.

Censorship/Intellectual Freedom

The Bowling Green State University Libraries support the free exchange of ideas and endeavor to build collections which include all points of view. At the same time, they neither approve nor endorse the views expressed in materials included in the collections. Where there is controversy or disagreement concerning the truth of particular ideas and issues of belief, the University Libraries attempt to provide a wide selection of materials encompassing the major viewpoints.

The Bowling Green State University Libraries subscribe to and comply with the American Library Association Library Code of Ethics. Titles for the collection are selected on the basis of overall content. No item is excluded on the basis of the author's race, nationality, or political or religious views. That some patrons may find an item objectionable on moral, religious, political or other grounds does not restrict or determine selection.

The Bowling Green State University Libraries do not accede to requests of individuals or groups seeking the removal from the collection of materials which have been chosen according to this collection development policy, nor do they yield to requests to add to the collection materials if their addition would contradict this collection development policy.

The Coordinator of Collections in consultation with the library administration responds to all questions concerning the propriety of specific materials in the Bowling Green State University Libraries. Persons or groups desiring further dialogue or action are referred to the Dean of University Libraries and/or to the Library Advisory Committee.

University Libraries Collection Development Policy Table of Contents

Updated: 06/05/2023 09:14AM