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University of Connecticut University Libraries

Collection Development and Access Plan:

Prepared by David Garnes October 1999; Revised by Jill Livingston December 2002


This plan follows the broad guidelines established in Ownership and Access in a Global Information Market: A Framework for the University of Connecticut Libraries, issued by the Chancellor's Library Advisory Committee in March 1999.


  1. Characteristics of the Community
  2. Collections Budget Expenditure Patterns
  3. Current Patterns of Information Service
  4. Emerging Choices

I. Characteristics of the Community

A. Factual Background

Degree programs:

The School of Nursing offers a variety of degree programs, including:

  • Bachelor of Science
  • Master of Science (RN to Master's in four specialty tracks)
  • Poster-Master Certificates
  • Doctor of Philosophy

Faculty: FTE 35 (Fall 2002)

Students: (Fall 2002)

  • Undergraduate 441
  • Master's 89
  • Doctoral 41

Program concentrations/strengths

  • BS: Wide range of undergraduate nursing courses, beginning in the junior year
  • MS: Four tracks:
  • Acute Care Advanced Practice
    Program options available for:
    Adult Acute Care
    Neonatal Acute Care
  • Primary Care Advanced Practice
    Program option available for:
    Adult Primary Care
  • Systems Management Advanced Practice
    Program options available for:
    Patient Care Services Administration
    MS & MBA Dual Degree Program
  • Community Advanced Practice
    Program options available for:
    Community Health Clinical Nurse Specialist
    MS/MPH Dual Degree Program
  • PhD: Wide range of programs is offered, including nursing theory development, philosophy of nursing science, qualitative and quantitative research methods, advanced statistics, as well as study in other specialty areas supporting the individual’s area of clinical interest.

The School also supports a Center for Nursing Research to support faculty, staff, students and community health professionals in developing research programs.

Special Characteristics of the Community: The community of faculty and students in the School Nursing is engaged in a wide range of academic endeavors, from the beginning undergraduate enrolled in an introductory research class to a doctoral candidate in the final stages of dissertation writing to a senior faculty member conducting in-depth scholarly research. This broad spectrum of activity requires wide support in terms of availability of and access to library resources. Increasingly, this demand also necessitates making careful and sometimes difficult choices regarding allocation of available resources.

Means of access to the library resources also differ greatly among students and faculty. Most faculty and graduate students are on campus for limited periods of time during a typical week and hence have limited occasion to visit the library. Electronic accessibility to library resources and services from remote locations has been and will continue to be of prime importance to this community of users.

Resident undergraduate students, on the other hand, are more apt to visit the library and are also more likely to use basic monographic research material and archived runs of standard journals. At the same time, nursing students participate in clinical rotations throughout Connecticut and enjoy the ease of accessing materials from clinical sites. The convenience of electronically available material, as well as the accessibility of this material from off-campus locations, point to an increased need of remotely available electronic material by this group as well.

The need for remotely available electronic material will continue to increase, as the School of Nursing increases enrollment and explores the option of offering online distance learning courses and instituting a Nursing Program at the University of Connecticut Avery Point Campus.

II. Collections Budget Expenditure Patterns

Base budget for monographs and journals (FY 2003/2004): $63,000 (approx. $53,000 serials; $10,000 monographs)

Note: This figure does not reflect expenditures for non-print media, including licensed electronic sources and videos.

Licensed electronic access for health-related databases (FY 2001/2002): approx. $30,000.

Note: Products include the following indexes: CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE, POPLINE, PSYCInfo, and full-text sources such as IAC Academic Health Reference Center.

Note: This figure does not include expenditures for other indexes relevant to Nursing, such as ERIC, Social Work Abstracts, Sociological Abstracts, International Pharmaceutical Abstracts, MICROMEDEX, AGELINE, Web of Science, and the many health indexes and full-text sources within the Dow-Jones and WilsonWeb suite of databases. It also does not include online journal packages that are very important to nursing. The cost for these other databases relevant to nursing for FY 2001/2002: approx. $200,000. The cost for the online journal packages relevant to nursing for FY 2001/2002: approx. $300,000.

Note: Costs for electronic products may reflect lower prices than in the past because of shared purchasing agreements with the University of Connecticut Health Center Library and the State of Connecticut’s ICONN initiative.

III. Current Patterns of Information Service

  1. Characteristics of the Literature

    While much of the scholarly investigation in the field of nursing necessitates a review of literature over a significant number of years, much has to do with more current trends and research. Electronic availability and/or document delivery of such material may be an acceptable alternative to permanently held scholarly archives.

    The need for basic instructional monographs for the undergraduate program argues for the ongoing purchase of such material, available onsite for students in residence on campus. In the future, as growing numbers of textbooks are made available online, these may provide a more flexible alternative.

    Interlibrary loan options may be an increasingly viable alternative for faculty and graduate students, who are now able to initiate interlibrary loan requests electronically. Interlibrary loan can supply nursing students and faculty with the necessary material to meet their broad range of interests. At the same time, this service advantageously delivers documents via electronic or postal mail to off-site locations. The service is expedient and no costs are assessed to students or faculty for its use.

    While inflation patterns for most monograph and serials titles in the areas of nursing and related fields have not been as extreme as in other science disciplines (chemistry, engineering, physics), there is no guarantee that this moderately-paced trend will continue. Significant price increases may initiate further reviews of current subscription lists and ordering arrangements, and a subsequent re-distribution of allocated fiscal resources.

  2. Collection Development
    1. Areas of Focus

      The library supports collection development in the areas listed as subject/focus areas for the various levels of degrees awarded (Please see "Program Concentrations," Section I.)

      In addition to those subject areas, other areas covered, though more selectively, include medical material of a primarily clinical nature; history of medicine; and conferences.

      Areas generally not collected include textbooks (except for those subjects where textbook information provides the most comprehensive information); examinations and study guides; and laboratory manuals.

    2. Acquisition Strategies
      1. Ownership of basic research/scholarly monographs and journals (paper, electronic, and micro-formats) has traditionally been a priority in library collection development to support academic instruction and research. Collection development of this nature is predicated on the assumption that such material will be actively used over a number of years.
      2. Monographs

        Monographic purchases focus on major trade and university presses, as well as major associations. The subject focus of these arrangements and purchases, outlined in approval plan profiles, attempts to correspond to the instructional and research areas highlighted in the School of Nursing profile.

        Approval plans continue to assure the receipt of currently published material, and other orders are initiated from publishers whose titles are not received automatically. Ongoing journal subscriptions maintain a base of serials holdings.

        Plans include: Yankee Book Peddler Approval/Slip plan, which covers U.S. scholarly and trade publishers and Canadian and British equivalents who directly distribute in the U.S. American Nurses Association - all publications National League for Nursing - all publications

        Publisher catalogs regularly reviewed for additional ordering include: American Public Health Association, W.B. Saunders, World Health Organization, American Hospital Association, Slack Inc., Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, American College of Physician Executives, American Medical Association, and others.

      3. Journals

        Ongoing journal subscriptions maintain a base of serials holdings. Increasingly, selection of new journal titles will be based on a number of proven-use factors, such as interlibrary loan requests. Similarly, circulation statistics, more readily available in the Library’s new integrated system, will provide use data that will influence future monograph purchases. Areas generally not collected include textbooks (except for those subjects where textbook information provides the most comprehensive information); examinations and study guides; and laboratory manuals.

  3. Access Development

    As we move towards a Development Policy that will highlight access as well as ownership, our efforts currently and in the future will be geared in this direction. Access to--as opposed to ownership of--research material is increasingly being provided online through licensed, networked web-based sources. For the most part, this material consists of indexes, although a good deal of full-text information is increasingly being made available as links from the Library’s web-based sites. It is further expected that more standard monograph and serials will be published digitally in the future, allowing remote networked access for members of the University of Connecticut academic community. This is particularly relevant for non-resident students. VPN accounts for clients using non-University web providers now allow remote access to resources normally restricted to users within the University of Connecticut domain, thus greatly enhancing product availability.

    1. Indexes and Abstracts

      The major health sciences journal indexes-MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, and others-are available electronically, several for the full retrospective run of the indexing service. Hypertext links from the Library's health sciences web page (http://www/lib/ provide easy access, from within the library and remotely, to these sources. Proxy server accounts also allow access by those faculty and students using providers other than the University Computer Center to databases restricted to the University of Connecticut domain. The library's web homepage also provides a wide variety of hypertext links-alphabetically and by various subject breakdowns-to many related index databases.

    2. Electronic Journals, Books and Data

      User enthusiasm and economic incentives have caused the library to embrace electronic only access to commercial as well as non-profit journal packages. With the subscription year that begins in January 2004, if a cost savings is available, the libraries are generally converting journal subscriptions that currently bring us both print and electronic copies to electronic-only provision.

      We are making this change on a publisher-by-publisher basis. Many of our electronic journals do not come directly by license from the publisher, but instead through aggregator products such as Lexis-Nexis Academic, Dow-Jones, InfoTrac and Wilson Web. The arrangements between aggregators and publishers are constantly in flux. Only when titles are available through multiple aggregators, in a complete and reasonably current version will the cancellation of print be considered.

      We have resisted going electronic-only up to now because of concerns about long-term, archival access. Commercial publishers cannot be relied upon to archive their content once the prospect of additional sales approaches nil. Although a solution is far from in place, we believe that technologies now under examination, with funding from the National Science Foundation among others, will yield solutions whereby the largest research libraries will undertake the distributed archiving of digital content in all our interest. We expect that even the largest commercial publishers will, ultimately, cooperate with such an arrangement.

      One of the primary goals in the immediate future will be to identify the journals for which we have a subscription but not electronic access, and attempt to add said access. Often the stumbling block for doing so is the license agreement. Additionally, many of the society journals are only now being made available electronically. Often, online access to these titles is free with a print subscription. Retaining access to the already respectable menu of online journals provided by the Library is an ongoing library goal although this effort is becoming increasingly difficult. Because of unsustainable inflation of scholarly journals, electronic only access may be increasingly viewed as a viable option. The question of permanent access to reliable archives of this material is not yet resolved, making such a switch a risky venture.

      Furthermore, electronic journals can be hot linked to web based indexes like Web of Science, and the electronic resources listed above. Additionally, the Library’s electronic journal locator, eCompass, facilitates the identification of specific e-journal titles "owned" by the Library (i.e., accessible via the University internet domain, "".)

    3. Other Internet-based resources

      Through a series of hypertext links, the Library's health sciences subject web page (/research/bysubject/heal.htm) gives access to both general library sources as well as to a variety of licensed products and World Wide Web sites in Nursing and the health sciences. The page is intended to provide faculty and students in the School of Nursing with a single convenient web-based source for most of their library-based research, including some full-text sources.

    4. Document Delivery/Interlibrary Loan

      Significant amounts of material are obtained from other library sources for health/medical material, mostly journal articles. In F/Y 2001-2002, nursing faculty and graduate students requested 668 articles (338 faculty and 329 grad) and 106 books (49 faculty and 57 grad). Undergraduate nursing students also request large quantities of documents via Interlibrary Loan. The ability to initiate electronic requests for material has greatly enhanced this access option. Web-based forms, available from the library’s web sites, offer faculty and students convenience, particularly with the ability to copy or link electronically obtained journal and book citations to the request.

    5. Significant Campus or External Resources

      The Archives of Nursing Leadership is a joint venture of the University of Connecticut School of Nursing and the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center. The Archives acquires, preserves and makes accessible the papers and records of Connecticut organizations that support the nursing professions and the personal papers of individuals who have made a significant contribution to Nursing within the state.

      Related academic programs for which significant relevant material is available via ownership and access include Allied Health; Anthropology; Sport, Leisure and Exercise Science; Adult Development and Aging (School of Family Studies); Pathobiology; Biomedical Science; Pharmacology; Communication Sciences; and other programs such as Psychology, Sociology, and Education as they relate to specific concentrations in nursing research and scholarship.

      Lyman Maynard Stowe Library at the University of Connecticut Health Center: Increasing electronic networking between the Storrs campus and the Stowe Library allows access to many health sources originating at each location. It is expected that this mutually beneficial relationship will continue to expand in the future, especially given the fact that replication of expensive research titles at both campus locations will occur less and less in the future.

IV. Emerging Choices

The proliferation of new information resources and the concomitant escalating costs of existing hard-copy and electronic titles and products (often supplied by high-profit publishers and vendors) require careful collection development and access choices, now and in the future. Our being unable to provide comprehensive access via ownership of material, however, is mitigated by an increasing ability to ensure electronic availability to networked sources as well as an ongoing commitment to reliable and efficient document delivery.

This significant evolution in collection development and access patterns also requires enhanced communication between library staff and the faculty and students they serve. Ongoing dialogue will help ensure that the best choices are being made and that users are knowledgeable about emerging kinds of library resources in terms of access and intelligent use. The Library Liaison Program, operational in the School of Nursing for nearly a decade, will continue to be the primary vehicle for this kind of contact. Familiarity with the library's web page, especially the health sciences subject page, increased classroom instruction, and formal and informal informational sessions, in the library and off-site, will ensure the best access to and use of archived and networked resources.

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