Information Resource Development Policy

About the Libraries

The UT Health San Antonio Libraries are at the heart of the Health Science Center community, with three locations (Long Campus, Texas Research Park Campus, and Laredo Campus) and a growing online presence, the Libraries serve as a hub for knowledge, education, and scholarship. The Libraries’ primary clientele include students, faculty, and staff who are affiliated with the Health Science Center either onsite or offsite. Secondary clientele include area health professionals, researchers, and members of the community.

Mission

The mission of the UT Health San Antonio Libraries is to promote learning, inspire discovery, and connect with our communities. This mission is accomplished by providing expert library services and access to reliable health sciences information.

Purpose of the Policy

The purpose of the Information Resource Development Policy (IRDP) is to guide collection development and management decisions and to ensure that information resources accurately and effectively support the mission and goals of the university.

Goals of the Policy

The goals of the Information Resource Development Policy (IRDP) are as follows:

• Develop and maintain collections that meet the needs of the UT Health academic, clinical, and research communities;
• Assess collections regularly for relevancy based on changes in campus programs, feedback, and usage;
• Maximize purchasing power and expand access to information through partnerships with state and regional consortia.

Scope and Guidelines

The Library collects, develops, and maintains collections in a variety of formats, however the preferred format for collection materials is electronic and/or online accessible. Collections focus on the following core subject areas: dentistry, medicine, nursing, basic medical sciences, and allied health sciences. Materials are also acquired in related subject areas such as: public health, pharmacy, psychology, health care management, and history of the health sciences.

Electronic Collections – Electronic resources are the preferred information format for the UT Health Libraries. Electronic collections consist primarily of e-journals, e-books, and databases. Access to electronic resources is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and is also available off-campus for affiliated users.

Physical Collections – The Libraries physical collections are maintained both on-site and off-site. Physical collections consist primarily of journals, books, and audiovisuals (DVDs). The majority of the print journal collection is housed at a Joint Library Facility in Bryan, Texas. At present, most of the print book collections are housed within the Libraries, but many of these collections will be migrating to the Joint Library Facility in the future. Physical collections are accessible at all locations and most materials can be shared between locations.

Historical Collections – The Library’s historical collections are housed on the main university campus and include: manuscripts, rare books, historical medical instruments, and archival materials. The Library has been designated as the University Archives and maintains historical documents about the university as well as scholarly works produced by students at the university. The historical collections are open to all researchers, and access to physical materials is by appointment. Content that has been digitized is accessible 24/7 through the Library’s Digital Archive.

Decisions and Selection

Information resource decisions are based on a solid understanding of the teaching, learning, and research priorities of the Health Science Center. The Office of the Director is responsible for the overall collection budget and works collaboratively with the Resource Management department to oversee budget allocations. Selection decisions are a cooperative effort between the Library Committee, Library Liaisons, and the Collection Development Committee. Each of these entities provides valuable feedback that guides collection decisions.

The Library Committee is composed of representative faculty appointed by the President of the University and works with the Library to serve in a consultative and advisory capacity.

Library Liaisons are assigned to each of the schools, work as an integral part of the curriculum, and provide input about resource needs based on program requirements.

The Collection Development Committee is composed of Resource Management Librarians and representatives from each of the Library divisions.

Resource Management librarians are primarily responsible for collection assessment, access, discovery, selection criteria, cost analysis, consortia activities, and policies and procedures.

Selection Criteria
The Library actively reviews information resources to determine what resources should be acquired, retained, and discontinued. The following criteria are applied in the review process: quality, relevancy, cost, format, accessibility, and usage.

Deselection Criteria
In order to maintain a relevant collection, the Library employees deselection as part of its collection development practices. The following criteria are used when evaluating materials for deselection: low usage, relevance to academic programs, currency of information, historical significance, condition, duplication, and availability in the Joint Library Facility.

  • The Joint Library Facility is a collaborative storage facility that houses print resources for a network of University of Texas Libraries. Libraries that opt to store their materials in this facility retain ownership of the resources. In addition, libraries with duplicate holdings can claim ownership of stored copies. The facility is located in Bryan, Texas.

Resource Sharing and Cooperative Purchasing

The UT Health San Antonio Libraries participate in several resource sharing and cooperative purchasing partnerships that expand the depth of information resources available to its clientele. Partnerships include the UT System Digital Library Consortia, the South Central Academic Medical Libraries Consortium, the TexShare Consortium, the Joint Library Facility, and the OCLC Library Cooperative. Through these partnerships the Libraries are able to expand borrowing privileges and increase access to electronic resources. Participation in cooperative purchasing allows the Libraries to negotiate the best pricing for resources.

 

Approved by the Library Committee, 2-3-97
Revision approved by Mary Moore, Ph.D., Director of Libraries, 6-23-2006
Revision approved by Rajia Tobia, Executive Director of Libraries, 1-29-2009
Revision approved by Rajia Tobia, Executive Director of Libraries, 10-12-2011
Revision approved by Owen Ellard, Senior Director of Libraries, 04-06-2018