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Government Documents Collection Policy

Objective

The objective of the Government Publications Department is to aid the library in fulfilling its mission, which is "..to provide - through its collections and its instructional services - as comprehensive an approach to learning needs as does the college. The Learning Resource Center recognizes its joint responsibility with the teaching faculty and the administration in the instructional design of the college".
The library currently selects 8% of all items available through the program and 22 of 23 core titles from the "Basic Collection". Depository materials are cataloged into the LC classification system and integrated into the general collection. Government materials are selected primarily to serve the needs of the college and surrounding community and concentrates in health, census, and legislative materials.

Access

The Documents department strives to provide free public access to information received through the depository. The library provides access to depository resources through a number of indexes and on-line services, in addition to the very high percentage of items cataloged into the main catalog. These indexes include ERIC, MEDLINE, LEXIS-NEXIS, STAT-USA, and Marcive's database catalog of U.S. Government Publications. Access to these databases are provided through internet workstations throughout the library. Most databases are available remotely for the college community.

Selection & De-selection

The reference staff routinely reviews the List of Classes for additions or deletions from the item selection profile. Recommendations for selection are welcomed from faculty, librarians, administrators, and professional staff. Recommendations are reviewed by the reference librarians and the library director who make the final decisions. Once a year the GPO forwards a computer printout, "List of Item Selections", to each depository library for review (usually in May). At this time, the reference librarian should assess the item number selections and determine of any additions or deletions should be made. Additions can only be made during the annual update cycle or upon receipt of a survey for a new series. Changes based on the annual selection update are put into effect October 1st. Deletions may be made at any time throughout the year by using the GPO form 3495, Amendments of Selections.

Format

Paper copy is preferred since it is most easily handled by the general public. Because of space requirements and also because the government seems to be preferring microfiche and electronic products more and more due to economic constraints, the library will be able to choose fewer items in paper in the future. If a choice in format is available, the reference librarian with the library director will choose that format deemed most appropriate

Special Orders

U.S. Government publications not available through the depository may be acquired at the discretion of the reference librarian and library director. If a title is considered important to the collection, it may be acquired from GPO by special order. As the documents budget is very limited, this is done very selectively.
If a patron request an item not owned by CCM, effort will be made to locate it through the Interlibrary Loan Department.

Discards

Discarding will follow the guidelines as established in Chapter 4 of Instructions to Depository Libraries, rev. 4/1992. It is important to remember the documents are government property. "Only the Public Printer, the Superintendent of Documents, or their agents can legitimately order a library to withdraw a document from its depository holdings." Most documents must legally be retained for 5 years at which time the library may request permission from the Regional Depository, Newark Public Library, to discard them. Exceptions are superseded by publication, duplicate copies, and items issued later in another format. 
As items are discarded from the collection a list is compiled. The completed list is sent to Newark Public Library to allow the Regional Depository first choice of  the items being discarded. The remaining list of items is sent to other depositories to allow them the option of selecting from the list. Remaining publications may also be offered through the national "Needs and Offers" list. Documents ordered withdrawn by the Superintendent of Documents are to be disposed of as per the instructions given at the time of the order. It is not necessary to notify the regional when removing documents ordered withdrawn. Documents which have been so ordered were withdrawn for reasons of national security or for incorrect or misleading information.

Weeding

At CCM superseded items and duplicate copies will be discarded. Weeding will be left up to the discretion of the reference librarian. The librarian should consider condition of the material and long-term research value relative to space considerations. Ephemeral material and publications timely in nature will be discarded after 5 years.

Replacement

Lost or damaged materials will not be replaced unless they are reference items or significant titles in the library's core collection. Interlibrary referral and photo duplication services will be utilized to fill specific patron requests providing it is a manageable project. The PRF will be consulted and offers lists of other depository libraries as well as fiche-to-fiche copies obtained from Newark Public Library when applicable.

Collection Criteria

In an attempt to define the contribution of Government Documents to the general collection at CCM, broad subject disciplines have been identified based upon the Library of Congress Classification System. Within each subject category, government agencies producing materials on that subject and are currently being collected by CCM are listed followed by the Library of Congress classification that has been assigned to those materials at CCM. At the end of each category is a suggested collection level. Collection levels are assigned to give an idea of the extent to which a particular agency's publications should be selected to support a specific subject area. In assigning collection levels, both the volume of material available and the amount chosen relative to the whole collection should be considered.
Publications currently being chosen for reference are listed individually in each category.
The collection levels listed below are based upon the New Jersey State Library's Collections Policy as adapted from the Research Libraries Group (RLG) definitions intended to describe collection strengths for academic libraries.
0: OUT OF SCOPE: The library does not collect in this area.
1: MINIMAL LEVEL: A subject area in which few selections are made beyond very basic works.
2: BASIC INFORMATION LEVEL: A collection of up-to-date general materials that serve to introduce and define a subject.. A basic information collection can support routine public inquiries but is not sufficiently intensive to support researchers.
3: ACADEMIC STUDY: A collection that is adequate to support undergraduate study. This level is adequate for most needs of the general public, with coverage at all appropriate reading levels. It includes a wide range of monographs.
4: RESEARCH LEVEL: A collection that includes the major published source materials required for independent research, including materials containing research reporting, new findings, scientific experimental results, and other information useful to researchers.
5: COMPREHENSIVE LEVEL: A collection in which a library endeavors to include all significant works.. the aim of this level is exhaustiveness.
 
GENERAL HISTORY
Sudoc classification: D.1
LC classification: DS
Reference materials included in this category:
Collection Level
 
GEOGRAPHY, ANTHROPOLOGY
Sudoc classification: PrEx1, S1
LC classification: G
Reference materials included in this category:
Background Notes
Collection Level
 
SOCIAL SCIENCES (Statistics, Economics, Sociology)
Sudoc classifications: C1, C3.,C55, C61, T
LC classifications: E, HA, HC, HD, HF, HG, JK
Reference materials included in this category:
Statistical Abstracts of the United States
County Business Patterns
Census of Population and Housing
County and City Data Book
IRS Materials
Collection Level
 
POLITICAL SCIENCE AND LAW
Sudoc classification: AE1, AE2, GS2, GS11, J1, J21, JU6, JU10
LC classification: J, JK, KF
Reference materials included in this category:
United States Statutes at Large
Federal Register
Public Laws
U.S. Court Directory
Collection Level
 
EDUCATION
Sudoc classification: ED1
LC classification: L, LA, LB, LC, HV, PE, QA
Reference materials included in this category:
Federal Student Financial Aid
Collection Level
 
GENERAL LITERATURE
Sudoc classification: LC6, LC30, LC40, D.1
LC classification: PN
Reference materials included in this category:
Collection Level
 
SCIENCE (Math, Astronomy, Geology, Chemistry, Zoology, etc.)
Sudoc classification: D213, I19
LC classification: QB, QE
Refernce materials included in this category:
Collection Level
 
MEDICINE AND HEALTH
Sudoc classification: HE1, HE20, HE23
LC classification: HD, RA, RC, RD, RG, RJDS
Reference materials included in this category:
Medical Subject Headings
Physical Fitness Index
Index Medicus
Social Security Handbook
Vital Statistics of the United States
Health, United States
Mental Health, United States
Smoking & Health Bulletin
Collection Level
 
BIBLIOGRAPHY AND LIBRARY SCIENCE
Sudoc classification: LC, P
LC classification: Z, G
Reference materials included in this category:
LC Classification
LC Subject Headings
Administrative Notes
United States Government Manual
National Zip Code Directory
World Fact Book
Collection Level

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Reference Desk 973-328-5296