Government Document - Collection Development and Use Policy

Government Documents
Gustavus Adolphus College, 800 West College Avenue, Saint Peter, MN 56082, (507) 933 - 7569

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Collection Development and Use Policy

The purpose of the Government Documents Department at the Gustavus College Library is to collect, organize and make available to library users U. S. Federal Government publications which support the educational program of the college and the information needs of the 2nd Congressional District. Because of the proximity of the 1st Congressional District, the information needs of that community will be addressed in concert with other depositories.  In addition to the depository documents available from the Government Printing Office (GPO), reference works and indexes needed for access and bibliographic interpretation will also be acquired.

This policy serves as the basis for selection, retention and preservation, and access decision making.  It will be used in conjunction with the attached guidelines published by the GPO, namely Depository Library Public Service Guidelines, FDLP Internet Use Policy Guidelines, and FDLP Guidelines on Substituting Electronic for Tangible Versions of Depository Publications.

Selection Guidelines  | Retention  |  Access  |  Collection Highlights  |  Maps  |  Appendices  |

I. Selection Guidelines

A. The U.S. Government publishes in all subjects while the instructional/research needs of the college and the community are equally diverse; therefore careful attention must be given to subjects collected. This is a selective depository without the aim of building a comprehensive collection. As such, selection of publications will fall within the following general criteria:
  1. Core list publications
  2. Publications requested by faculty
  3. Publications which the librarians feel directly support the liberal arts curriculum
  4. Publications requested by residents and organizations of the 1st  and 2nd Congressional Districts (e.g., individuals, Chamber of Commerce, public libraries, and school districts).
  5. Publications in subject areas of lasting interest and historical significance to our community (e.g. publications on Minnesota and the Upper Midwest, agriculture publications important to the region etc.)
Publications, particularly series, which can contribute to the resources available in the statewide depository community will also be selected and retained. For example, the collection of U.S. Geological Survey publications is nearly comprehensive and since it can serve as a regional resource it should be continued even though faculty interest may change.

B. When appropriate or necessary the following narrowing criteria will also be applied to focus selections:

  1. Selection on a state by state basis in the following order:
    • Minnesota
    • Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin
    • Other states according to faculty interest
  2. Availability of publications (especially series) in neighboring depositories
  3. English language unless specifically requested
C. Selection will be made in all physical formats (i.e., paper, microform, CD-ROM, diskette). Generally, paper is the preferred format, but cost considerations for the college in storage and preservation will be considered when format is determined. Electronic and microform publications will be chosen, keeping in mind the interests of economics (for the college as noted, but for the Depository Library Program as well), patron ease of use, and space needs. Access to Internet electronic publications will be provided with the department's homepage serving as the gateway to the Federal Depository Library Electronic Collection.  Other electronic indexes, full-text sites and links will be accessed and maintained as appropriate to the enhanced use of the collection. Duplicate copies will be purchased as needs determine on an individual title basis (e.g., copies of Statistical Abstract will be purchased for Reference and Reserve in addition to the depository copy held in Government Documents). Duplicate copies of important series (e.g. census publications) containing specific information for Minnesota--and therefore subject to heavier use and abuse--will be purchased routinely.

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II. Retention

Gustavus Adolphus College is liberal arts college committed to undergraduate education. Although research plays an important role in this academic community, this is not a research university. The library collections reflect that institutional character, and the depository collection will be maintained under that principle. A consistent weeding program is essential to a vital collection and as such is an ongoing concern.The following criteria are applied to the collection:
  1. Generally, documents will be retained 5 years after receipt in accordance with 44 USC, but all publications will be reviewed on an item basis.  When possible, electronic versions of publications will be substituted for paper or microform versions according to GPO guidelines.
  2. Series of historical significance in and of themselves, for the college, and for the statewide community will be retained indefinitely.
  3. Publications of historical significance and ongoing benefit to the 2nd Congressional District will be maintained.
  4. Publications in series of lasting significance (e.g. Census publications) will be retained, some selectively according to I B above.
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III. Access

The Folke Bernadotte Memorial Library provides liberal hours of operation. The Government Documents collection is accessible whenever the library is open. There are no restrictions on use of the collection for either the college or the general communities, access and reference will be provided without regard to affiliation. A paging system is in place to provide access to the collections to users with physical handicaps and special needs.

Appropriate computer hardware and software will be provided to assure full use of electronic and internet government publications. The library homepage, and the department homepage will be used to organize remote access, highlight publications of temporal interest (e.g., special link to tax forms and publications of the Internal Revenue Service; the electoral process, etc.).

The documents collection is, for the most part, a circulating collection. Faculty, students and staff may check materials out of the library with a valid college identification card. Community users with a valid Minnesota public library card will be issued a courtesy card by the Circulation Department. No fees or charges for use of the collection will incur, although consistent with library policy for all materials, normal fines for lost or damaged materials replacement will be levied. Normal photocopy charges will apply.

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IV. Collection Highlights

The government documents collection contains several areas of particular strength, which mirror the interests of the faculty and the teaching program of the college. These areas of strength include the U.S. Government Departments and/or Agencies listed below.

Commerce - Census Bureau, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Defense - Engineers Corps (Water Resource Series)

Education - National Center for Education Statistics, Education Research and Improvement Office

Health and Human Services - Various agencies, National Instate on Drug Abuse, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

Interior - Various agencies, Geological Survey, Land Management Bureau

Labor - Labor Statistics Bureau

Smithsonian Institution


Treasury - Internal Revenue Service

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V. Maps

The Map Collection housed in Nobel Hall is particularly noteworthy. Attached is a list of item numbers used in the List of Classes and the corresponding map series selected by the library. See more information about the Gustavus Map Library under Special Collections.

By Item and SuDoc Number (Superintendent of Documents Classification Number)

Item #
SuDoc #
Item #
SuDoc #
A 13.28 
 I 19.80
 A 57.38
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 C 55.416/7
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 C 55.416/9-2
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 C 55.416/11
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 D 101.22
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 ED 1.310
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 GP 3.8
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 49.9
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.76
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
I 19.79
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.87
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.88
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.91/2
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.92
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.113
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.81
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.81
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 53.11
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.99
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.110
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.102
 I 19.81 or I 19.81/2
 I 19.102
I 19.108
 I 19.102
 I 19.108
 LC 1.51
 I 19.108
NAS 1.43
PREX 3.10/4
N 1.38/2
S 9.12

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VI. Appendices

  1. Collection Development Policy, Folke Bernadotte Memorial Library, 1996 (revised)
  2. Depository Library Public Service Guidelines for Government Information in Electronic Formats, 1998
  3. FDLP Internet Use Policy Guidelines, January 15, 1999
  4. FDLP Guidelines on Substituting Electronic for Tangible Versions of Depository Publications, May 15, 1999
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