The primary mission of Preston Library's collections is to support Virginia Military Institute (VMI) instructional program. As such, the Library primarily collects materials at the Instructional Support Level as defined by the Library of Congress. As a library supporting undergraduate work, comprehensive research collections are beyond the capacity of the Library.
The Library’s collections serve the VMI community in:
Development and maintenance of the Library’s collections is a responsibility shared by librarians and faculty, with ultimate responsibility resting with the Library Director. The Head of Electronic Resources and Collection Development Services is responsible for the collections. Library users are encouraged to offer suggestions for the purchase of materials to any library staff members.
In addition to the resources that Preston Library directly purchases or licenses, the Library also draws from numerous means of resource sharing and consortial collection development in order to support the Institute’s research and teaching mission.
Preston Library provides high-quality materials that serve the curricular, teaching, and research needs of VMI. Deviations from these guidelines will be resolved in consultation with the Library Director.
The following criteria are considered in making selection decisions:
Materials which are not acquired:
Monographs: The preferred monograph format is electronic.
The library is attentive to the preferred formats and resources for the disciplines represented in VMI’s instructional program.
In general, materials will be purchased in English, unless requested to meet specific curricular needs.
Preston Library is classified as a small selective depository for federal government documents and complies with all federal regulations governing this status.
The preferred format for periodicals is electronic. Print periodicals are not bound and are retained for three years. After this period, access is through interlibrary loan. Subscriptions are reviewed biennially in conjunction with departmental faculty. In evaluating package acquisitions and subscriptions, the Library considers numerous factors, including:
In general, popular fiction is not systematically collected, exceptions are made for works considered of significant literary value.
Electronic format is preferred.
The Library will not purchase textbooks. However, recognizing the financial burden that textbooks present for many students, the Library will create access to open educational resources offered by VIVA Open and Affordable Course Content Initiatives.
The Library maintains subscriptions to streaming video.
Preston Library collects materials based on VMI’s instructional programs and uses the Library of Congress Collecting Levels and a guideline for developing the collection in all formats.
|Call Number||Subject Area||Collecting Level|
|B||Philosophy, Psychology, Religion||3|
|C||Auxiliary Sciences of History||3|
|D||World History and History of Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, New Zealand, etc.||3|
|E||History of America||3|
|F||History of the Americas||3|
|G||Geography, Anthropology, and Recreation||3|
|P||Language and Literature||3|
|Z||Bibliography, Library Science, and General Information Resources||1|
Preston Library welcomes gifts of scholarly and rare materials provided the item abides by this policy. The Library does not appraise gifts for tax or inheritance purposes. Donors are fully responsible for arranging appraisals and for any costs involved. In most circumstances, donors are responsible for transporting materials to the Library. Upon receipt of the gift, the Library will send an acknowledgment letter with a description of the gift. The Library reserves the right to dispose of gift items.
Preston Library’s print and electronic collection will be continually evaluated to maximize usefulness and relevance to the Institute’s teaching and research needs. Deselection projects will take place in consultation with relevant faculty members.
Criteria for deselection include:
Library staff will do basic book repair.
Policy Adopted by Pongracz Sennyey, Library Director