Essential Links

Collection Development - General

From AASL Essential Links

see also Awards
see also Collection Development - Elementary
see also Collection Development - Middle/Jr. High
see also Collection Development - Reference
see also Collection Development - Sr. High
see also Review Sources


Book Awards

see also Awards


ALA's Awards and Grants page lists all awards given by the ALA and its divisions. Look under the subheadings of "Book, Print & Media Awards", "Youth Media Awards" and "Recommended Print & Media ("Best of")" for materials best suited to collection development.


Collection Development and Selection Policy Writing

ALA's Workbook for Selection Policy Writing Every school system should have a comprehensive policy on the selection of instructional materials. It should relate to the uses of the particular library and include all materials; for example, textbooks, library books, periodicals, films, videocassettes, records, audiocassettes, and CDs. A comprehensive policy on the selection of instructional materials also will enable school professionals to rationally explain the school library program to the community. And, most important in a crisis, when there are complaints the use of the “objectionable” item can be explained more easily.



Doll, Carol A. and Pamela Barron. Managing and Analyzing Your Collection: A Practical Guide for Small Libraries and School Media Centers. Chicago: American Library Association, 2002, ISBN 0-8389-0821-7. This book includes a number of “recipes” to help even math-phobic library managers compile and analyze statistical information about their library collections. You will find measures to analyze timeliness, relevancy, use percentages, and user profiles, among others.


Hoffmann, Frank and Richard J. Wood. Library Collection Development Policies: School Libraries and Learning Resource Centers. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2007, ISBN 0-8108-5181-4. This book includes resources for the standard parts of collection development policies, but also addresses the ethical and legal issues related to digital resources, and digital information within the context of traditional library operations.


Hughes-Hassell, Sandra and Jacqueline Mancall. Collection Management for Youth: Responding to the Needs of Learners. Chicago: American Library Association, 2005, ISBN 0-8389-0894-2. Connecting to the guidelines in Information Power, this guide will help school librarians become learner-centered collection managers. It provides the theoretical background, strategies and tools for learner-centered collection management.



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Collection Mapping

Collection Assessment and Mapping Comprehensive explanation of collection mapping.

Collection Development Using the Collection Mapping Technique David V. Loertscher and Laura H. Wimberley offer valuable assistance in using collection mapping to improve your school library.

What is Collection Mapping? Learn more about collection mapping and how it can be helpful for your collection development procedures.


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A Few Sample Policies


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General Information


This series of articles by Michelle Baldini and Meghan Harper dicusses collection mapping - integrating the school library collection with the needs of the school's curriculum. The entire series is found in the KQWeb Archives, Volume 36, Number 5.


Recommended Book Purchases for Common Core Standard Alignment From the Chicago Public Schools, this wiki includes a vast collection of titles that are recommended for Common Core Standard alignment.


2007-2008 Schools and Staffing Survey: Table 4 This table shows the average number of total holdings, additions, and expenditures in school libraries during 2006–07 for various kinds of materials, by school type and selected school characteristics. The table is from the report: Characteristics of Public and Bureau of Indian Education Elementary and Secondary School Library Media Centers in the United States: Results From the 2007–08 Schools and Staffing Surveywhich includes selected findings from the school library data files of the 2007–08 Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS).


Farmer, Leslie. "Brace Yourself: SLJ's School Library Spending Survey Shows the Hard Times Aren't Over and Better Advocacy is Needed".School Library Journal, March 1, 2012. SLJ’s Spending Survey results for 2010-11.


School Library Media Centers: Selected Results from the Education Longitudinal Study of 2002. Washington, DC: National Center for Education Statistics, 2004. The ELS:2002 school library survey, administered primarily to school librarians, evaluated various aspects of school libraries: their space, organization, collections, resources, staffing, and use. This particular study focuses on services and resources for 10th grade students.


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Specialized Bibliographies

ALA Recommended Viewing List of links to ALA's recommended videos/DVDs for all ages, sorted by age group.

Recommended Reading ALA Library Fact Sheet 23, A webpage of reading lists.


School Library Journal's Top 100 Children's Novels Chosen through a survey, this is a list of the books most voted as Best Children's Novel. This list was compiled in August, 2012.


School Library Journal's Top 100 Picture Books Voted on in early 2012, this complete list of the top 100 choices for best picture book was released in August.


Please, there have been many specialized bibliographies published in recent years, and it is not possible to list them all here. Suggestions for finding booklists, either online or otherwise, are welcome:

  • Try searching your favorite search engine with keywords, ex. Use a topic-'baseball reading lists', or genre-'fantasy reading lists'.
  • It might help to designate non-fiction or fiction to limit your results.
  • Also specify the age group, ex. 'middle school' or 'young adult', 'children' or 'teen'.
  • To keep up with new publications, get on the mailing list for your favorite publisher (paper or email), and/or visit their website frequently.

Links to specialized booklists and bibliographies may be posted under a topic heading. If no topic exists for the link you want to add, feel free to create a new page.


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Weeding and Inventory

Baumbach, Donna J. and Linda L. Miller. Less is More: A Practical Guide to Weeding School Library Collections. Chicago: American Library Association, 2006. ISBN 0-8389-0919-1. Guidelines and specific criteria for weeding school library collections and youth collections in public libraries.


Collection Inventory Why should you inventory your collection? What should be inventoried? How to begin? Your questions will be addressed here.


Collection Maintenance and Weeding Purging your collection of unneeded items is often difficult and sometimes controversial. Here you will find information on how to approach this library maintenance job.

Weeding Library Collections Tips on weeding your collection, as well as ideas on how to dispose of extra materials.


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