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Lewis J. Ort Library Materials Deselection

Library Materials Deselection Overview

Library Materials Deselection

Deselection (or weeding) is a standard practice in managing a library’s collection. It is important in keeping a collection vibrant, relevant, and useable. It also assists in preventing stacks from becoming overcrowded, helps make remaining materials more visible and accessible, and allows the library to make the most effective use of its building space to best support learning and research.  

Collections evolve over time to reflect changes in the University’s mission and goals, curricular changes, the preferences of our users, and the academic community at large.

What We Are Doing - Objective of Our Current Initiative

The objective of our current deselection initiative is to evaluate of all types of materials held in the Ort Library’s collections (except Special Collections/Archives, Government Documents, Maps, and Reserve) to identify those that should be permanently removed in order to maintain a vital collection in support of the curricular and research needs at FSU while simultaneously providing space for other vital services.

This is a cooperative and consultative endeavor that involves library staff, teaching faculty, and other members of the FSU campus community.

Why We Are Doing This

  • To increase the relevance and accessibility of the Ort Library’s collections.
  • To ensure that the library’s collection meets the current curricular and research needs of FSU.
  • To highlight newer and significant works.
  • To ensure shelf space for new items and to properly maintain the physical condition of materials.
  • To make effective use of the Ort Library, not just for current and new materials, but to create functional and productive spaces for individual study, collaborative scholarly activity, and to house related services to better serve FSU students, faculty, and staff.

How We Are Proceeding

  • Systematically reviewing areas of the Ort Library’s collections beginning with subject areas where content most quickly becomes outdated, as well as select collections by format or type of material (VHS tapes, reference works, periodicals, etc.).
  • Identifying materials for potential deselection and removal from the library based on established criteria.
  • Engaging faculty and other members of the FSU campus community in a review of materials identified for removal.

We Need Your Help

  • We need the assistance of faculty and other members of the FSU campus community to review the lists of materials identified for removal to ensure that we are retaining seminal works and other important titles.
  • Instructions for reviewing materials identified for deselection and submitting feedback are found in the Candidates for Deselection section of this website.

What Happens to Deselected Items

Materials that are withdrawn from the collection will be subject to all University policies addressing property disposition. The library will utilize disposal methods that are appropriate to the subject matter and format, including:

  • Recycling - For subject areas where a significant proporation of content regularly becomes dated or inaccurate (e.g. many of the sciences, professional standards, etc.).
  • Used Book Sellers - The library may send items to used book sellers; the staff time required to pack and send items is a factor in deciding to utilize these organizations.