About Us
Policies and Procedures: SJU Library Collections
St. Jerome’s University Library Collections
Academic Operations Manual
Approving Authority: SJU Senate Council
Established: May 17, 2018
Date of Last Review/Revision: November 24, 2023
Office of Accountability: Vice President Academic and Dean
Administrative Responsibility: Librarian
1. Policy Statement
The St. Jerome’s University library endeavours to acquire, organize, make available, and preserve a core collection of materials to best support the teaching and learning needs of the St. Jerome’s University community.
The library works to provide access to the core works within the various disciplines taught at St. Jerome’s as well as those that support the university’s Catholic mission. The St. Jerome’s Librarian is responsible for developing collection profiles that take into consideration the unique course offerings and programs available at St. Jerome’s. In recognition of the library’s efforts to provide access to outstanding collections, the Vice President Academic and Dean’s office shall notify the library of any new courses/programs requiring additional support as they are approved.
In addition, the St. Jerome’s library shall work collaboratively with our partners at the University of Waterloo library and with the other Affiliated and Federated Institutions of Waterloo (AFIW) and their libraries, to build print and electronic collections that are of benefit to our wider University of Waterloo community.
2. Scope
This policy covers all materials in all formats in the collection of the St. Jerome’s University library. This statement excludes materials held in the St. Jerome’s University archives.
3. Principles
The St. Jerome’s library conducts its operations based on the following statements:
The library follows the principles of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act.
4. Guidelines for Collection Development
The St. Jerome’s Librarian is responsible for collection development and shall develop the library’s collection in consultation with faculty when appropriate. Where feasible, the subject areas taught at St. Jerome’s, the interdisciplinary nature of courses, and the research pursuits of the University will be considered. If materials that fall beyond the scope of the St. Jerome’s library collection are required, the library shall provide access to such materials through its OMNI partners, or via the University of Waterloo’s interlibrary loan management system.
The St. Jerome’s Librarian is ultimately responsible for collection development within the library and should take the following criteria into consideration when making collections decisions:
  1. Formats
The St. Jerome’s Librarian is responsible for purchasing print and electronic books and periodicals, as well as audiovisual materials for the collection.
Where possible, collection materials that are still in use, but are held in an obsolete or discontinued format will be replaced by the same item in an accessible format.
Monographs are generally purchased in paperback rather than hardcover when available if financially advantageous. Exceptions may be made for anticipated high-use and/or long-term-use items. Monographs are generally purchased in print format unless an electronic format is requested or required.
  1. Reserves Collection
Library print and electronic materials are placed on Course Reserves at the request of faculty for the use of students in courses taught at St. Jerome’s University.
Faculty are sent reminders three times per term to submit their course reserves. If an electronic copy is required, the library will purchase the relevant e-book (if available and at a reasonable cost). Alternatively, the library will place or purchase the requested print item in the physical Reserves Collection, located behind the Information Desk.
Textbooks may be purchased and placed on reserve at the discretion of the St. Jerome’s Librarian, in consultation with the faculty member.
  1. Duplicates
Generally, only one copy of each item will be retained in the collection. Exceptions are made for heavy-use materials, for different editions of the same item (where different editions have value to our users), and for publications by members of the St. Jerome’s University community. When a secure digital backfile is available for any of the St. Jerome’s library’s journal subscriptions, absent any rare or heavily used materials, the print copies of the journal will be deemed to be the duplicate copy and may be removed from the collection.
  1. Faculty, Staff, and Student Publications
The library will (unless cost-prohibitive) acquire two copies of any monograph written or edited by current faculty, staff, or students at St. Jerome’s University. If a current faculty member, staff member, or student has contributed a chapter to a book, one copy of that book is added to the circulating collection.
  1. Materials Available at Other OMNI Institutions
The St. Jerome’s Librarian will work to maximize the library’s collection budget. To that end, the Librarian will take into consideration the ease of access in borrowing materials that are already available in an online format through shared e-book collections, or, in the case of print items, that are already easily accessible through our University of Waterloo library partners. This is not to suggest that the St. Jerome’s library will never duplicate holdings already available within the system, but rather that ease of access to electronic and lesser-used print collections will be considered when making purchase decisions. For print items not held within the University of Waterloo system, St. Jerome’s can easily borrow items through our OMNI library partnership.
  1. Collaborative Collection Development
Where possible and appropriate, costs will be shared with other University of Waterloo libraries to provide access to electronic and other relevant resources for St. Jerome’s University and University of Waterloo patrons.
  1. Lost and Missing Materials
Library materials that are lost or missing will be replaced unless it is determined by the St. Jerome’s Librarian (in consultation with faculty as appropriate) that these items are no longer relevant to the subject areas and/or courses taught at St. Jerome’s University.
5. Guidelines for Deselection of Materials
Deselection is the practice of identifying material for removal, usually based on currency, usage, physical condition, or duplication, and is essential to the maintenance of a relevant and useful library collection. In addition, the physical capacity of the library is limited, and the collection size must be managed to allow for ease of access, growth, and collection revitalization. Items may be removed from the collection at the discretion of the St. Jerome’s Librarian, who shall seek input from other library staff and St. Jerome’s faculty as appropriate. Materials removed from the collection will be offered to another library or organization, made available for free, sold, or recycled as appropriate.
Criteria considered in the deselection of materials include, but are not limited to:
  1. Circulation History
Materials in the St. Jerome’s University library collection that have not circulated in more than ten years, and which are not considered classic works or essential to the subject area to which they belong, will be considered for deselection.
  1. Uniqueness of Items
If a particular item is held only in the St. Jerome’s University library, it will generally be maintained in the collection unless it is determined to be of no value to the subject areas taught at St. Jerome’s University.
  1. Condition of Materials
Items that are in poor condition will either be deselected, replaced, or rebound/repaired, depending on the relevance to the primary subject areas of the St. Jerome’s University library collection and the circulation history of those items.
  1. Alternative Access
Print subscriptions to periodicals, journals, and other materials that are available online, and to which access is expected to continue, will not normally be renewed.
  1. Older Editions
Superseded editions of materials will be deselected unless those older editions are relevant for teaching and research.
  1. Obsolete Formats
Materials in obsolete formats will be deselected if those items are deemed not to be useful to the collection.
  1. Subject Areas No Longer Taught at St. Jerome’s University
When a decision is made to permanently discontinue offering courses in a specific subject area, the library materials pertaining solely to that subject area may be deselected.