Going Virtual:weeding federal government documents in the electronic age                                                  ...
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Going Virtual: weeding federal government documents in the electronics age


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A practical exploration of Elon University Belk Library’s project to weed and catalog its tangible federal government document collection in an effort to transition to a more electronic collection of government resources. Presented during a poster session at the North Carolina Library Association’s Biennial Conference October 6th, 2011. Jennifer L. Smith, MLIS

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Going Virtual: weeding federal government documents in the electronics age

  1. 1. Going Virtual:weeding federal government documents in the electronic age -Jennifer L. Smith, Belk Library at Elon University Introduction The ResultsElon University’s Belk Library developed a project to weed Space –and catalog its tangible federal government document • 12,300 items weededcollection in an effort to transition to a more online collection • 90% reduction in shelf space for paper governmentof government resources and better meet the information documentsneeds of its library patrons in the electronic age. • 456 shelves cleared • room created for approximately 11,400 books from the Background regular collection with space for growthElon University is a private, liberal arts institution with5,000 undergraduate and 600 graduate students. Belk Access –Library has approximately 300,000 volumes. The building • Approximately 500 tangible items that had not previouslyis 75,000 square feet in size with three floors and a been in the catalog were added. These were items suchLearning Commons area that also houses Campus as presidential documents, Smithsonian InstitutionTechnology, the Tutoring Center, and the Writing Center. http://permanent.access.gpo.gov/gpo9182/legal-requirements-guidance2011.pdf scientific research reports, and education documents.The library has been a part of the Federal DepositoryLibrary Program since 1971. Practical Issues of Weeding Electronic Collection Increased- Collection Development Plan – • Cataloged electronic documents increased – approximately 3,000 since cataloging electronic • Curriculum - is the item relevant to the curriculum of documents began at Belk Library in 2007 Elon University? • Purls were added to several existing document records • Databases were added to the library website • Format – electronic formats were preferred if there was an online equivalent to the print document and the print The project ran from Spring 2010 to Summer 2011 Really? document was not useful to library users. Future Projects Census Bureau pamphlet from 1985 Federal Depository Library Program Legal Regulations – • microfiche weeding– following the same guidelines and Why take on this project? facilitated by the overlap in some areas with the Elon• Space - there was a desperate need for more shelf • Any item superseded by a more current version or University Law School Library collection space duplicated in the library’s collection could be weeded • continued increase in the cataloging of electronic federal automatically (items in Elon University’s Law School documents• Long Overdue – due to time and staffing issues the Library Collection counted as duplicates for Belk Library) library was not able to undertake a complete weeding • Items five years old or newer: cannot be weeded unless Helpful Resources project in several years • FDLP Desktop, http://www.fdlp.gov/ superseded or duplicated • Documents Data Miner, http://govdoc.wichita.edu/ddm2• Access – as was common with depository libraries in • FDSys, Federal Digital System, http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/ earlier years, Belk Library did not catalog all government • Items five years old or older: If superseded or duplicated documents, making this information difficult for patrons to the document could be weeded automatically. If not it locate. could be weeded after being offered to the Federal Jennifer L. Smith Regional Depository Library at UNC-Chapel Hill and Belk Library at Elon University,• Electronic Age – the library needs to provide users with other libraries. jsmith41@elon.edu To see this poster online go to: the most up-to-date government information which is www.slideshare.com/jsmith41 increasingly online