The University of Alabama
Annex Collection - Guidelines and Selection Criteria
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The Libraries’ Annex is a 25,200 sq. ft. facility that has provided off-site storage for library materials since 2003. The Annex has a capacity of approximately 650,000 volumes and 12,000 boxes of archival records. Because materials are not stored in call-number order, the collection is not browsable.
 
I. General Guidelines for Collection managers
Annex selection is part of a larger program of collection review. It is expected that most material removed from active stack space will be transferred to the Annex. In some cases, however, it might be more appropriate to withdraw the material from the Libraries’ collections or to reformat the material. When reviewing material to be transferred to the Annex, collection managers should consider the following general guidelines.
 
A. The Annex is intended to house low-use or at-risk materials that retain some value to the collection. The facility can accommodate all material formats.
 
B. Annex selection and recommendations are an ongoing responsibility of collection managers.
 
C. Generally, only cataloged materials may be sent to the Annex. Exceptions for sending uncataloged materials to the Annex must be approved by the Associate Dean for Collections.
 
D. Annex shelving capacity is limited; therefore, collection managers should consider circulation statistics and the physical condition of the various copies before recommending that multiple copies of an item be sent to the Annex. Multiple copies of low use items may be withdrawn upon recommendation.
 
E. Materials may be transferred back from the Annex to the campus libraries. Requests for materials that are needed on a short- or long-term basis should be sent to the Associate Dean for Collections, and the materials will be returned.
 
F. Collection managers are encouraged to consult with teaching faculty, library colleagues, the Collection Coordinators, and the Associate Dean for Collections in applying these guidelines.
 
G. All recommendations for Annex transfers must be approved by the Associate Dean for Collections prior to preparing materials.
 
II. Reasons for Sending Material to the Annex
 
A. Space
The primary reason for sending materials to the Annex is to provide adequate space for high-use material and for new acquisitions.
 
B. Low Use
Circulation records provide a clear history of an item’s use, but low use or potential low use can be surmised for the following categories:
  • Items that have been superseded by more recent editions or electronic editions;
  • Items in subject areas with no current teaching or research relevance;
  • Older items in disciplines that rely chiefly on recently published material.
 
C. Preservation
The controlled environment of the Annex makes it the optimal place to shelve fragile or damaged items.
 
D. Security
The Annex is an appropriate choice for shelving material that is valuable or at risk of theft or mutilation. This option is useful for materials that do not meet the criteria for Special Collections.
 
 
III. Selection Criteria
The following criteria represent general guidelines. The criteria concerning date of publication, circulation records, and date of entry into the collection will be used to generate reports for collection managers’ consideration.
 
A. Monographs
  • Individual Monographs. In general, monographs meeting both criteria will be transferred to the Annex:
  • No circulations within the past 10 years
  • Published within the following time frame:
            Science and Engineering – more than 20 years ago
            Social Sciences – more than 30 years ago
Humanities – more than 40 years ago
 
  • Monographic Series. Titles analyzed in the Libraries’ catalog and classed separately should be treated as individual monographs.
  • Annuals. Annuals analyzed and shelved as monographs should be treated as individual monographs.
  • Multi-Volume Sets. Sets should usually remain intact, whether on site or in the Annex.
  • Monographs with Media. Monographs containing computer disks, microfiche, or other enclosures should be treated as regular monographs. Texts and media that have been shelved separately should be reunited prior to sending them to the Annex.
 
B. Serials
  • Current Subscriptions. In general, serials meeting the following publication date criteria will be transferred to the Annex:
            Science and Engineering – more than 20 years old
            Social Sciences – more than 30 years old
            Humanities – more than 40 years old
 
  • Titles in Databases. Titles contained in stable electronic databases will be moved to the Annex on a regular basis. In cases where electronic coverage is not complete (e.g., recent JSTOR issues), volumes that have no electronic coverage and that do not meet the general guidelines for transfer according to publication date, will remain on site.
  • Unindexed Titles. Unindexed titles, regardless of age, should be kept on site to facilitate browsing.
  • Cumulative Indexes. Print indexes available in electronic formats should be sent to the Annex.
C. Reference Titles
Current reference materials (bibliographies, dictionaries, yearbooks, handbooks, indexes, and biographical sources) are not good candidates for the Annex. However, superseded editions and print works now available electronically should be considered for transfer to the Annex. When transferring previously non-circulating materials to the Annex, collection managers should consider whether to maintain the non-circulating status.
 
 
IV. Timeline for Annex Selection
Monographs, reference works, and periodicals should all be reviewed on an ongoing basis. Volumes included in electronic resources, such as JSTOR, should be sent to the Annex when the volume becomes available online.
 
Collection managers generally remain responsible for their collections regardless of location. Requests for moving large collections to or from the Annex require approval from the Associate Dean for Collections prior to preparing material for transfer.
 
 
V. Transferring Materials to and from the Annex
Transfer of materials to and from the Annex will generally be completed by Annex staff. Cataloging staff will be involved in processing materials moved to the Annex, particularly with series and periodicals.
 
Collection managers (and/or staff under their supervision) will mark items to go to the Annex.
 
Cataloging and Annex staff will update holdings and location for split runs or other anomalies in the bibliographic or holdings record.
 
Annex staff will update holdings and locations for monographs or for complete runs of series or periodicals holdings. 
 
Annex staff will be responsible for the physical move of materials from the library to the Annex.
 
Revised May 26, 2009
Accepted May 27, 2009 mlj