UCF Libraries Policies


Mission of the UCF Collection Services

The UCF Libraries is dedicated to build collections to have great long-term impacts on the teaching, learning and research at UCF and to support the mission and goals of UCF. Professional judgement and fiscal responsibility will be exercised to ensure the optimal collection services within the limits of budget and space.

Goals of Collection Policies

The policies outlined in this document aim to provide overarching principles and guidelines to ensure a holistic collection strategy that will contribute a long-term impact to the continuing successes of research, teaching and learning at UCF. The goals are to establish a relatively consistent and clear baseline, and with flexibilities to emphasize the strengths and interdisciplinary nature of programs at UCF. They should be used in conjunction with the subject specific collection policies.

Collection Principles


The collections acquired should be available to all UCF users. Electronic resources must be accessible to all users via an authentication protocol sanctioned by the UCF IT. The Libraries makes every effort possible to acquire resources meeting the evolving accessibility standards. Vendors should adhere to the U.S. Access Board’s final rule on accessibility requirements for information and communication technology, covered under Section 508 of the U.S. Rehabilitation Act.


The collections should be developed according to the value of the University. Contents meeting the diverse needs of UCF users and reflecting a broad spectrum of perspectives in cultures, heritages, societies, countries, and technologies shall be represented in all collections.


Except for the Health Sciences Library with its own budget and personnel dedicated to serve the College of Medicine, UCF Libraries is funded centrally to serve colleges and programs at all locations. To achieve best cost efficiency within the budget limits and to serve as many users as possible, most library collections, including books, serve multiple UCF programs on one-copy.

To ensure fiscal responsibilities, collection decisions for how library resources are acquired and where the resources are housed are made by the UCF Libraries. A balance should be strived for meeting the present or short-term needs versus long-term projected needs.

UCF Libraries offers a robust document delivery (DL) system and interlibrary loan (ILL) service to ensure UCF users at all locations have access to library resources at all locations and beyond. It is important to note that ILL/DL is subject to copyright restrictions.


Quality of the collections embodies that of the University. Besides relevance for research, teaching and learning, the authoritativeness of the author or editor, reputation of the publisher or platform, physical condition of the tangible items, rarity or uniqueness of the contents should all be considered. Perpetual ownership of the contents should be preferred for electronic acquisitions. Resources requiring a recurring financial commitment, either as a subscription or with a continuing access fee, shall be carefully examined periodically on archiving options to ensure the enduring vitality of the contents.

Collection Selection Considerations

Physical vs electronic

All else being equal, electronic format with multiple simultaneous access is preferred to reach more users. Nonetheless, in certain fields of scholarship, the physical format, such as print books and DVD, may represent the primary publications and/or the only viable option for acquisitions and user experience. Duplicates between physical and electronic shall be avoided unless for archival purposes.

Physical Location

Physical format will be selected if no viable electronic equivalent is available and will default to one copy per title due to budgetary restraints. The copy will be housed at the locations chosen by the UCF Libraries to serve the needs of relevant programs. The decisions on location are also driven by the integrity of intended uses of the body of publications. The shelving capacity and other aspects of a library’s physical space may also influence location decision.

Gifts in Kind

The UCF Libraries welcomes gifts of books, CDs, and DVDs from interested donors. Materials donated become the property of the UCF Libraries and cannot be returned. And large donations in non-English will be considered on case-by-case scenario. Please visit Book and Gift Donation for specific procedures and guidelines.

Rare or other out-of-print works of a scholarly nature may be of particular interests to the Special Collections & University Archives, which has its own separate collection policy.

Rights and Terms for Electronic Resources

Terms such as the number of simultaneously use, copy and download full text, permission for interlibrary loan, authentication, and data assessments shall all be considered and negotiated to maximize the benefits for user. The rights and terms for all license materials shall be reviewed and approved by the UCF authorized personnel and strictly adhered.

One-time vs recurring

Although requiring ongoing financial commitments, recurring purchases tend benefit contents requiring frequent updates. Preservation and archiving shall be considered, too. Consult with the Acquisitions & Collection Services for final decisions.

Immediate vs enduring

The collections should be built purposefully with the mission of lasting impact. UCF Libraries does not collect titles serving immediate individual advancement needs such as study guides, workbook, preparation for standard or professional exams or certificate. On the other hand, it is equally important to recognize the needs for timeliness and currency from STEM and other emerging and evolving disciplines.


Restricted by budget and space, UCF Libraries does not actively collect current course textbooks, including those published intended for individual use. Electronic books with friendly digital right management (DRM) may be purchased and adopted as alternatives for classroom use. Print titles acquired by the Textbook Affordability & Student Success Librarian is not covered under this collection development policy.

Open Access

UCF libraries advocates the open access movement, either by building digital collections and intuitional repository (details please visit the “Digital Collections” and “Open Access”), or by systematically evaluating, selecting, and promoting the use of open resources, whether as alternatives or in addition to existing traditional resources. Electronic packages with Read+Publish options are carefully examined if budget permits. However, due to the financial constraints, article processing charges (APC) typically will not be covered by the Libraries.

Electronic Resources

  • Available to all of UCF students and employees in all programs. The Libraries does not purchase resources with access to limited to specific individual or programs.
  • Accessible to all locations and Off Campus through the Libraries’ preferred authentication service. Currently the Libraries use OpenAthens to support authorization and access. The Libraries does not purchase resources that rely on Username and Password for authorization.
  • Authorized use for UCF affiliates and/or additional if specified by the licensing agreements. Systemic or excessive downloading, searches or printing is prohibited. Usage and sharing must comply with Copyright, licensing agreement, and other applicable laws, regulations and policies in the U.S., Florida, and UCF.
  • Content overlap and duplication are kept to minimum, to the extent of overlap with the current collection, whether in print or online. 
  • Perpetual access: The Libraries seeks to build a lasting collection and prefers to retain rights to access content in perpetuity, especially for online journals and books. Lack of perpetual access options may result in deciding against acquiring online content.
  • Multi-campus demand: Online is preferred when the content serves programs at more than one of UCF’s locations.
  • Simultaneous Users: Online journals and database are acquired with no limit on concurrent users wherever budget allows. Online books may be purchased with concurrent user restrictions for cost savings.  Content to be used as assigned readings is acquired with unlimited concurrent usage, if possible.
  • Cost and funding considerations:
    • FTE is often used by vendors and publishers to determine the price for institutional subscriptions; and therefore, the cost for UCF to license an electronic resource is far more than an individual subscription or that of a smaller college. Quotes may be obtained if deemed critical to assess the viability of acquisitions
    • Resources with a recurring expense cannot be purchased using one-time funding, such as monograph funds for programs. Resources with annual cost increases of 5% and more are not sustainable. Fees for maintaining or accessing platforms should be avoided. Special funding sources can be used to acquire eResources. All such arrangements require the approval of the Head of Collection and Acquisitions Services.
    • Trials are only arranged if potential funds are identified. Otherwise the Library will NOT set up the trials.
  • Platform functionality: The platform and content should work with current operating systems and browsers, function well on mobile devices,and support widely used library standards, such as OpenURL. The functionality and usability of the platform is considered in acquisitions decisions.  

Collection Management Considerations

Deaccession and Cancelation

Like the acquisition process, the decisions to remove items from the University’s collection shall be made in context of Libraries’ core mission within the constraints of budget and space. Considerations for the potential impact and the integrity of the total collection should be weighed, rather than strictly on concerns over space, usage and datedness.

Cancellations of electronic resources are driven primarily by budget. Any lack of historic usage, overlapping resources and low-cost alternative contents are key criteria in evaluation.

Examples of deaccession of physical materials may include:

  • Disintegrating physical copy that is beyond repair or replacement
  • An obsolete format that is no longer supported by the University
  • Item with electronic duplication with perpetual ownership and/or access
  • Multiple copies of low-use titles across multiple UCF library locations
  • Items widely held and readily accessible to UCF users via interlibrary loan
  • Isolated volumes evaluated as having limited scholarly value
  • U.S. federal government documents are deaccessioned in accordance with protocols established by the Federal Library Depository Program.

Items unique or not widely held by other libraries and the original format itself has artifactual or scholarly value may be considered as exceptions to the above and therefore, may be retained.

Preservation, Replacement and Repair

The UCF Libraries does not have the budget nor expertise on preservation for the physical items in the general collections. Conscious efforts are made at purchasing and storing items with good quality and proper environment. For licensed electronic resources, a third-party archiving service is subscribed to preserve the long-term access.

Materials that are declared lost or missing, or in poor/unusable condition will be replaced at the discretion of the appropriate librarian, in accordance with the collection policies in effect at that time.

Book and Gift Donations

The UCF Libraries welcomes gifts of books, CDs, and DVDs from interested donors. For more information, prospective donors may contact: Acquisitions and Collection Services staff at the John C. Hitt Library, the Special Collections & University Archives staff, the Rosen Library staff, or Curriculum Materials Center (CMC) staff.

For donations received by the Acquisitions and Collections Services department, the Rosen Library or the CMC:

  • Materials donated become the property of the UCF Libraries and cannot be returned. Prospective donors are requested not to place any restrictions on gifts, their use, or disposition.
  • Donors that provide the Libraries with complete name and address are acknowledged in writing, acknowledging the number of items received and the month donations were received. However, the Libraries cannot appraise or assign a dollar value to any gifts received.
  • A librarian considers each gift received and determines its appropriateness to the UCF Libraries collection. All books and media selected for the collection are cataloged.
  • The UCF Libraries is particularly interested in obtaining rare or other out-of-print works of a scholarly nature. First editions and limited editions of works by renowned authors are of particular interest for the Libraries’ collection.
  • The UCF Libraries cannot accept outdated textbooks, print runs of journals or magazines, or obsolete media formats including LPs, audio cassettes, and VHS tapes.
  • Gifts should be dropped-off or mailed to the UCF Libraries, as the Libraries does not have a vehicle or staff to pick-up books. An appointment is necessary for dropping off at the loading dock at the John C. Hitt Library. Contact Acquisitions and Collection Services to set up an appointment.

Loading Dock Directions

Before dropping off a donation please fill out the following form and bring it with your donation: Donation Form


For donations received by the Special Collections & University Archives department:

  • For more information on the materials that Special Collections & University Archives collects, please see our Build Our Collections page.
  • Please contact the department prior to the delivery of materials, if possible.
  • Materials received must be accompanied by a Materials Receipt Form, please see our Forms page for more information.


Subject Librarians Model in Collection Services

Subject Librarians are essential in building robust and distinctive Collections, by collecting new titles, historical collections, and primary source materials to fill collection gaps and/or address emerging scholarly needs. Librarians also promote awareness of these resources, in courses and to individual researchers, by providing instruction and support for their use.

Each academic department/program has designated a faculty liaison to partner with the subject librarian. Collections Services are built on and committed to questions, concerns, suggestions, and research priorities from the teaching faculty and their students. All UCF faculty and students are also invited to participate in the collection development process at any time through Materials Recommendation Form.

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