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Research and Instruction Services Policies

Collection Development Policy

Purpose of Collection Development Policy

The purpose of this collection development policy is to provide guidelines to the resource coordinators for the purchase of physical materials and individual electronic titles.


The Library provides services to the faculty, staff, and students of Northeastern State University and purchases of materials in support of University degree programs.


The Library assigns resource coordinators to represent each of the degree programs. Resource coordinators work with NSU faculty in their respective colleges and departments to identify materials for selection. Recommendations for the purchase of materials should be made to the appropriate resource coordinator. Although faculty and others are welcomed and encouraged to make recommendations for the purchase of library materials and resources, due to limited funds and overall curriculum needs the final selection decisions are made by the resource coordinators.

Criteria for Selection of Materials

The following will be purchased when budgetary considerations allow: faculty research material; materials for the University Administration; and works on local history along with the history of NSU. Titles in English will be chosen except those directed towards foreign language instruction or deemed appropriate by a resource coordinator. Works of popular fiction along with “self-help” and “how to” books will be purchased only on a limited basis.

As a general rule, textbooks will not be purchased for the collection. Course required textbooks should not be purchased. Rare and out of print books are typically selected only when affordable. Generally, the Library does not purchase multiple copies of the same title. However, resource coordinators may select multiple copies of the same title for purchase when deemed appropriate or if heavy use can be demonstrated. Multiple copies of the same title received as a gift may or may not be added to the collection, as determined by the appropriate resource coordinator. Decisions on whether to replace lost or damaged material are made on an individual basis and may be purchased through the contingency fund.


Serials may include periodicals; newspapers; annuals; journals; magazines; proceedings; transactions; indexes; monographic series; and continuation orders. Serials may be acquired in the following formats: print, microfilm, DVDs, and electronic.

All other library materials

All other library materials excluding serials should be considered here. These may be monographs, including reference books, curriculum materials, Y collection, musical scores, audio-visual materials, maps, atlases, and online resources.

Special Collections

The purpose of Special Collections is to provide materials pertaining to the history of Oklahoma, the surrounding area, the Cherokee Indians, and other Oklahoma Indian tribes.


Funds are allocated to resource coordination areas annually according to a formula which includes factors such as full time equivalent faculty, student credit hours, usage level, and average book cost.

Intellectual Freedom

The Library recognizes its responsibility in having available a representative selection of materials on subjects which support the curriculum, including materials on controversial topics. In an endeavor to provide material which engages critical thinking skills about controversial subjects, the Library will provide materials representing a variety of conflicting viewpoints. It should be clearly understood and emphasized that the Library does not endorse all the opinions expressed in the materials selected.

Gifts (Donated materials or monetary)

Gifts of either materials or money to purchase library materials are welcome, provided the gifts are appropriate and there are no restrictions attached. Gifts of materials, such as books, AV materials, maps, microforms, and periodicals appropriate for the Library collection may be added to the library. Gifts materials are reviewed for appropriateness for the collections established by policy or procedure. Gifts not added may be discarded or placed in the Library Book Sale.

See complete Library Gift Policy and Receipt for Donations elsewhere on this page.


Weeding, or the removal of obsolete materials for purposes of discarding, should be considered an integral part of the total organized effort to study and develop the collection. Weeding is a thorough and conscientious effort to achieve a well-balanced collection suitable to the clientele served and should be a continuous, consistent process.

Obsolete materials, such as outdated books with inaccurate information, superseded editions, broken files of unindexed journals, superfluous duplicates, and badly damaged copies are examples of items which may be withdrawn from the collection. Availability of newer and more valid materials and importance to the field are of prime consideration in weeding; classics in any field represented in the curriculum will be retained, depending upon condition and number of needed copies. Final decisions for the selection or weeding of library materials will be made by the appropriate resource coordinator, and will be based on the overall consideration of a subject area as well as specific criteria used in each program area.

Weeding is the responsibility of the resource coordinators within their own area.

Curriculum Materials

The list of State Adopted Textbooks is received in December or January. Each subject area rotates every six years for review.

Library policy is to withdraw older editions of Curriculum Materials as the new edition is ready to shelve. Shelf space is at a premium in this area. In this way, we keep a current six year rotation of adopted textbooks.

Resource coordinators are notified in advance of the subjects being withdrawn. Any titles they wish to keep are retained. Some ten year old or older textbooks are weeded at the end of each review year after all new materials are on the shelves.

Withdrawn materials are offered to state funded public schools during a special time each Fall.

(1991/92; 1995; revised 2015)

Instruction Policy

Instruction Policy for Librarians & Instruction Partners

University students have a role and responsibility in creating new knowledge just as teaching faculty have a responsibility to design curricula and assignments that foster engagement with the scholarship within their disciplines. Librarians are partners with responsibility for extending student learning to include information literacy in collaboration with faculty. The Resource Coordinators/Instruction Librarians teach information literacy skills by providing sequenced instruction in all formats for classes with an emphasis on providing specific instruction for students in their majors.

What is included in Library Instruction?

Undergraduate students receive basic introductory information, assignment-specific instruction, and information literacy concepts.

Students in upper division, graduate, and professional programs are instructed in the tools of their field as well as assignment-specific resources.

Where is the instruction conducted?

Library instruction includes formal classes taught in the library’s computer labs, classes taught outside of the library, small group sessions, instructional web pages, embedded within online classes, tutorials, workshops, scavenger hunts, one-on-one sessions, walking tours of Library facilities, and presentations.

Hours of Service:

Classes are taught during their normal class period and based on the availability of the instruction librarian. Librarians are available for one-on-one and small group instruction during office hours or by appointment.

Who provides Instruction?

Library instruction is provided by the Resource Coordinators. However, classes may be taught by other librarians as well as staff under the direction of a Resource Coordinator.

Whom we serve:

Instruction is provided to Northeastern State University students as well as community outreach for visiting pre-K through 12th grade school classes. Instruction is also provided to Tulsa Community College classes and students at Northeastern State University-Broken Arrow.

Priority of service:

Classes are taught by the Resource Coordinator on a first-come-first-serve basis and as their schedule allows. Northeastern State University students have priority in the use of library facilities


Scheduled classes will be recorded on the appropriate online Reservation Calendars and also on the monthly Resource Coordinator statistical reports.

Professional Standards:

Librarians will refer to the “Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education” created by the Association of College & Research Libraries, as well as program-specific information literacy standards established by ACRL. Resource librarians will follow applicable guidelines from accreditation agencies for NSU programs.

Expectations for Instruction Partners: 

Resource Coordinators provide assistance and the best possible resources for student success. In our experience, a successful partnership with the faculty member or instructor includes the following: 

  • Contact your Resource Coordinator at least three to seven days in advance of needing a class taught. All classes are taught on a first come, first serve basis and scheduling in advance assures the availability of the Resource Coordinator as well as the use of a computer lab in the library. If a class needs to be taught sooner, the Resource Coordinator will do their best to accommodate the instructor’s needs.
  • When faculty contact their Resource Coordinator to teach a class, please provide your name, course number, the date and time you would like the class to be taught, the number of students, and the assignment. Please also indicate any required accommodations for students with disabilities.
  • The class is more effective if a specific assignment requiring library resources has been assigned prior to attending the library instruction class. Please give the Resource Coordinator a copy of the assignment or syllabus at the time of scheduling the class.
  • When possible, it is beneficial for the instructor of the course to attend the library instruction session with his/her students. This reinforces the partnership of the instructor and librarian and also encourages students to connect assignment-based questions to research questions as they arise.
  • Resource Coordinators may be available to be “embedded” as a librarian in your Blackboard course shell. This allows them to include content in the course that students have direct access to, as well as provide the students with easier access to reach them with questions.
  • If specific topics or resources should be included in the class, feel free to convey these wishes to the Resource Coordinator.
  • Classes can be provided in person, online, in library labs, or in the instructor’s classroom.
  • Classes in computer labs are for library instruction only and may be conducted by either the resource coordinator or the classroom faculty.
  • Classes are available for all program levels.
  • Instruction can also be provided through online tutorials. Custom tutorials may be crafted with sufficient advance notice.
  • The Resource Coordinator may ask to work with you to conduct an assessment of their instruction and/or student learning.
  • The Resource Coordinator welcomes your comments and suggestions as well as ideas of other services they can provide. 

Last updated: April 2017

Library Labs Policy

Library Labs Policy


First priority for use of the labs goes to library instruction classes. When classes are not in session, they are available to be used as labs and are open the same hours as the library. Lab 118 may also be scheduled by the Testing Center. When a class is in session, no other students are allowed in the classroom. The instruction librarian should provide a five minute warning before closing the lab for a class.

All classes should be scheduled through the appropriate resource coordinator. Classes in the lab are for library instruction only and may be conducted by either the resource coordinator or the classroom faculty.

High school classes may be scheduled in a lab during non peak instruction times. All scheduling should be done through the librarian coordinating outside classes.

The labs will be scheduled through the online reservation system. Reserve personnel will check the online schedule for Lab 105 and post the day's schedule outside the lab. The instruction librarian should also post the "class in session" sign during all classes.


The Research and Instruction Department will be responsible for formulating all policies regarding the use of the room, software to be loaded, etc.  Technology Support is responsible for the maintenance of all computers, power and network cables, and loading any software.  Only system administrators can download software. All software must be legal and licensed.

The labs will have the same Acceptable Use Policy as the university and Web stations. The labs are for NSU use only—guests and children should use the stations in the Reference area.

There should be no disruptive behavior or damage to the equipment. The library reserves the right to ask anyone to leave the lab. Research and Instruction librarians, or other library personnel, will enforce all policies.

Policies drafted by the electronic Classroom Committee (Sarah Brick Archer, Gary Cheatham, Katherine Ott, Jim Winterbottom, and guest Helen Hill) on August 28, 2000; and adopted and revised by the Reference Department on October 17, 2000.  Revised on November 28, 2006. Minor edits to reflect nomenclature changes April 29, 2014 and November 14, 2019.

Gifts Policy

Statement on Gifts to the John Vaughan Library:

Aug 23, 1994

Gifts can be important to the John Vaughan Library to enhance or develop subject areas. The Library reserves the right to accept donations without restrictions, or reject gifts prior to donation, and to dispose of, after receipt, materials deemed inappropriate to the collection.

Kind Of Materials Desired:

Typical library material such as books, periodicals, and audio-visual formats (such as DVDs, CDs, maps, etc.) Any non-library type material should be approved prior to donation by the Acquisitions Dept.

List Of Other Donation Places:

Public library, nursing homes, prision libraries, Goodwill, book resale shops.

Where To Donate:

Normally donations should be delivered to Technical Services (Library room 106) during normal business hours (8:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.). After-hours donations may be made at the main circulation desk.

Acknowledgement Of Donations:

Formal acknowlegement of the gift may be requested by the donor at the time of donation. A preliminary receipt will be given at the time of donation by the library employee accepting the gift. The donor should be asked if gift plates should be included and how the text should be worded.

Tax Deduction Questions:

By IRS code, the library or any library employee can NOT appraise donations. The value of the gift must be determined prior to the donation and is the responsibility of the donor. Persons giving large donations may need to consult an accountant or IRS publication 561 and 526 for further information.

Kind Of Material To Avoid:

Materials should be in good condition. Collections which have mold or mildew damage are of very limited use to the library because of their potential to damage the rest of the collection. Certain types of material such as textbooks over ten years old or Reader's Digest condensed books are not usually of interest to the library.

Selection Of Gift Material:

The resource coordinator for the appropriate subject area will make the decision to add gift material to the library collection. Acquisitions will provide the coordinator with information on the titles to aid in the decision process.

Items selected for addition to the collection will be integrated into the normal flow of material in Technical Services.

Disposal Of Unselected Material:

The unselected gift material will be disposed of according to current state regulations and other resource-sharing agreements.