Collection Development Policy


This policy outlines the principles used by staff at Concordia University of Edmonton’s Arnold Guebert Library to evaluate, select, manage and remove library materials. This policy is in keeping with the library’s mission to provide easy access to a diverse collection of current materials in support of the academic programs offered at Concordia University of Edmonton.

Library selections come from three main sources: faculty members, library staff members, students and staff community. This policy is intended to clarify the role of each of these groups. Suggested changes to this policy should be brought to the Library Director to be addressed at a meeting of the Collection Team.


Faculty members have the primary responsibility for identifying materials to be purchased by the library that support the educational objectives of the courses they teach. New course proposals should always include a listing of all materials required to support the research needs of students who take the course. Course syllabi should include lists of recommended reading materials owned by the library. Where appropriate materials are lacking, faculty members need to identify suitable items for purchase.

Collections Team members are responsible for supporting the efforts of the faculty by providing helpful selection tools such as publisher’s catalogues, books reviews, bibliographies and other sources of useful information.

Library staff members are responsible for identifying gaps in the existing collection by monitoring collection use and listening to community feedback. They also have the responsibility for replacing, binding or discarding damaged materials and notifying relevant faculty members when this damage affects the courses they teach.

Concordia University of Edmonton staff and students are welcome to suggest titles for purchase by the library. Such suggestions will be considered according to this collection policy and will be purchased if they contribute to the library’s ability to achieve its mission.

General Principles

The following general principles guide all collection development decision-making:

Hardcover or Paperback

Books of lasting value will be acquired in hardcover, or in other less permanent bindings if hardcover is unavailable. Paperbacks may be bound before being included in the collection when high use is anticipated. Popular books of temporary value will not be bound.


Due to the high cost and short-term value of post-secondary level textbooks, the library will not acquire them unless an adequate case can be made for the enduring value of a specific item.

Multiple Copies

In most cases the library will only acquire a single copy of a book. Multiple copies may be purchased if high student demand is anticipated and the reserve room policies do not allow the demand to be met by other means.

Book Replacement

Damaged books that are brought to the attention of library staff will be replaced if rebinding is not possible and the book is still in print. Out of print books may be purchased from out of print book sources, based on student/faculty needs.


Books that no longer serve student or faculty research needs or are damaged beyond use will be removed from the collection by library staff. Faculty may also ask library staff to remove dated, inaccurate, or damaged materials.


If an individual or group wishes to remove a library item based upon social, political, sexual, or religious grounds, a completed book challenge form must be presented to the Library Director who, in keeping with this Collection Development Policy, will address challenges in consultation with those concerned. If further action is required, the Dean of Student Services and Vice-President Academic may be consulted.


Print Periodicals

Each year upon renewal the list of print subscriptions is reviewed by library staff in consultation with relevant faculty members, usually division chairs or department coordinators. If cancellations are to be made, prior consent of the effected department is obtained and suitable alternatives to the print source are identified. Faculty may suggest new periodicals titles to their library liaison who can determine if the title can be ordered in consultation with the Library Director.

Microform Periodicals

Microfilm titles are no longer purchased. Current subscriptions to specific microfiche titles are maintained but are reviewed annually for more accessible alternatives.

Electronic Periodicals

The library strives to make the majority of its periodical collection available electronically.


Free newsletters deemed of interest to students, faculty and staff will be housed in the newsletter collection. These free titles are not catalogued unless requests have been made to maintain back issues.

Periodical Binding

Titles deemed of lasting scholarly value are bound on a yearly basis. When funds permit, back runs of loose titles are bound. Faculty can suggest titles for inclusion in the yearly binding order by contacting the library liaison for their division.

Audio-Visual Materials

Audio-Visual Orders

Concordia University of Edmonton Library purchases DVDs, audio CDs, and videos at the request of faculty for use within the classroom or as supplementary material to support a specific course. The library does not currently have the resources or the space to build a general interest AV collection or to collect AV materials exclusively for recreational use.


The library will order whichever format faculty requests, assuming it is available although CD and DVDs are preferable for longevity. Audio-visual materials circulate only to Concordia University of Edmonton students, faculty and staff and are not available for interlibrary loan.


All orders for audio-visual materials must be directed to the Acquisitions Technician with the following information: title, language, publisher, director, date, etc. All audio-visual requests will be prioritized by the “needed by” date supplied by faculty. If a problem or delay occurs, the requestor will be informed. Orders for audio-visual materials will be placed within a period of 5 working days, whether or not there is a “needed by” date.

Access and Security

All videos, audio CDs, and DVDs that are part of the permanent collection will be cataloged, managed and maintained by the library. The library will order replacements for missing titles as determined necessary.


Audio-visual materials are checked-out for three days. Faculty can request extensions. All patrons are responsible for the well-being of all Audio-visual materials as fines will be assessed for damaged or missing materials. Audio-visual materials can be renewed up to four times. Fines accrue at $1.00 per day.


Audio-visual materials should be returned during operating hours only. Audio-visual materials can be damaged or lost in the book drop. Patrons will be responsible for damaged or lost materials. Before returning DVDs, patrons need to check that the DVD is in the case. If a case is returned without the DVD, the DVD will remain checked-out until it is returned and late fines will be assessed if necessary.

Damaged Audio-Visual Materials

All damaged audio-visual material will be sent to Bibliographic Services with an accompanying damage report so that it can be determined whether the material should be repaired, replaced or removed from the collection.

Government Documents Collection

Specific government documents relevant to the programs offered at Concordia University of Edmonton are selected and received through the Depository Service Program, of which Concordia University of Edmonton’s Arnold Guebert Library is a selective depository. Faculty may request the development of a certain subject area by discussing their interests with the library liaison for their department.

Annual Reports

The library does not collect print copies of annual reports as most are now available through the online Canadian Business Resource directory or from relevant government websites.

Map Collection

All maps are to be catalogued and classified using Library of Congress classification and records will be entered into the NEOS catalogue. No political maps before 1990 should go into the collection. (Exceptions: Canada and United States). Most maps will be stored flat in the map cabinet, so the call number labels will be on the lower left corner. Some maps may have to be folded to fit this way. Those maps that do not fit into the cabinet and are laminated will be rolled and stored in the roll store stand next to the map cabinet. The National Atlas of Canada maps from our previous kit will remain folded in the cabinet. All maps are organized by call number.