Mapping Collections to Academic Departments: How To

Is the sum of a library’s support for Gender Studies reflected in the sum of its “Gender Studies” budget? But what if both Gender Studies and Political Science faculty regularly contribute to the journal Gender and Development — and it is in the call number range for Sociology and is paid from a budget for Economics?   Under Mapping Collections to Academic Depts, in the Data & Methods Bank, you will find the philosophy, practice and tools for matching library collections to the scholarship and interests of academic departments.

Interdisciplinarity, multidisciplinarity, electronic resources, and outdated but in-use classification systems all make collection assessment and development tremendously more complex. 

When library resources are matched to academic departments, you can:

  1. Analyze collections in a consistent and systematic manner.
  2. Calculate the amount of support the library provides to academic units in terms of resources purchased.
  3. Align resources to the needs of the community.
  4. Discover what is not being systematically collected.
  5. Fully account for interdisciplinary subjects.
  6. Provide the widest range possible of call numbers to use to search vendor databases such as GOBI and OttoEditions.
  7. Quickly advance the process of familiarizing selectors, who have new subject responsibilities, with a field of study.
  8. Create services based on call numbers such as Browse Online or On Foot.
  9. Enhance outreach and resource usage by offering canned searches such as those based on subject-headings identified via call numbers, e.g., Cyber Terrorism.

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