Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Weeding and Cooperative Collection Development, Sara Bushong

This is the first post in a short series of posts summarizing information from the CMCIG workshop. For additional comments from workshop attendees, visit the CMCIG Blog.

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The CMCIG workshop, Dynamic CMC's: Tools to Improve Service, was held Friday, May 18, 2007, at Miami University's King Library. The first session presenter was Sara Bushong, Head Librarian of the Curriculum Resource Center at Bowling Green State University's Jerome Library. Sara's presentation, "Weeding and Cooperative Collection Development," included discussions on weeding that have been present on the EBSS list serv in the last month, detailed the weeding project currently in progress at BGSU, and provided information regarding OhioLINK and cooperative collection development.

Issues Facing CMC's include collection development and the ever present questions of "Is it old?" or "Is it historical?" CMC directors must determine how long to keep textbooks, activity books, and materials kits and juggle these issues with our individual collection development missions and policies. Sara detailed several points made on the EBSS list regarding different weeding system in place. One of the most prevalent methods, the
CREW guidelines revised and updated by Belinda Boon, utilizes a six point guideline following the acronym MUSTIE (Misleading, Ugly, Superseded, Trivial, Irrelevant, Elsewhere attainable).

BGSU's collection analysis and weeding project was introduced to workshop attendees, as well as the criteria form used for the CRC collection. The form identified three key factors; circulation trends (last two circulation dates), depository trends (number of copies), and ownership by OhioLINK (public and academic) libraries. Further considerations for withdrawal from the CRC collection or consignment to the BGSU depository with final decisions regarding withdrawal of titles were made by the CRC staff. :
  • If (title) is already in depository: Withdraw
  • If OhioLINK has lots of circulating copies (+5): Withdraw
  • If OhioLINK has few copies (3 - 5 depending on title): BGSU Depository
  • If there are more than 2 copies in another depository: Withdraw
  • If there are only single copies in two other depositories: BGSU Depository
  • If copy is in bad condition and not a significant title: Withdraw

The analysis form criteria was applied to children and young adult literature, curriculum textbooks (additional terms), activity books, and reference books. Sara reported that at this time, BGSU has withdrawn almost 4,000 items thus helping to "refine our collecting focus, make decisions for the future, and relieve space needs and physical weight issues."

I found this session particularly interesting as one week prior to the workshop I fielded inquiries from the library director regarding weeding the AU juvenile collection (space is a continuous issue as is the relevance of our collection). A large collection does not guarantee a comprehesive and useful collection, it is just large. We do own dated non-fiction titles that should be removed and replaced with newer titles having correct information. An important distinction to make, and one that was discussed at length during the workshop, is that weeding processes are not "one size fits all." Every library and/or curriculum materials center librarian has to use the system most benefitting individual mission and collection development statements. I have instigated a quick discussion concerning a potential weeding project (juvenile non-fiction)with one of the college of education professors. It will be beneficial to me having a representative from the college using the juvenile collection share in the decision making process.

For more information on this presentation, contact Sara Bushong, Bowling Green State University.

Updated 5/23/07

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