Collection Development

Maquoketa and the rural areas surrounding it have certain characteristics affecting Library usage:

1.  Patrons with low educational level;

2.  Patrons with a low level of income;

3.  Retirement-age persons, in both home and institutional settings;

4.  Families with young children.

Collection development efforts have been made with these factors in mind.

1.  Responsibility. Policy regarding selection of materials for the Library collection is set by the Board of Trustees.  The Board of Trustees delegates to the Library Director responsibility for the selection of materials and development of the collection according to stated policies.

2.   Objectives. The objective of selection is to provide those materials that will help the Library perform its chosen roles in the community, according to its Mission Statement.

3.  Process. Library materials are selected by the Director and staff. Accepted reviewing media are consulted. Recommendations from the public are welcomed and always considered.  Popular materials are selected on the basis of predicted and real demand. The reserve list is consulted and titles are duplicated as funds permit.

4.  Review. The Library will review decisions regarding specific materials upon written request. A form for this purpose is available at the circulation desk. Upon receipt of a completed statement of concern form, the matter will be put on the agenda of the next scheduled meeting of the Board of Trustees.

5.  Library Bill of Rights. Underlying the Library's Materials Selection Policy is the Library Bill of Rights, the Freedom to Read Statement and the Intellectual Freedom Manual adopted by the American Library Association and appended to this policy.

6.  Selection Criteria. The following criteria are used in evaluating the inclusion of an item in the library's collection:

A.    Current usefulness or long-term value.

B.    Authority and competence in presentation.

C.    Importance as a record of the times.

D.   Relation to the existing collection.

E.    Relative importance in comparison with other works on the subject.

F.    Standards of quality in content, format or binding.

G.   Price.

7.  Labeling. Library materials are not marked or identified to indicate approval or disapproval of the contents, and no book or other item is sequestered, except for the purpose of protecting it from theft or injury, as in rare or irreplaceable items.

8.  Materials for Children.

A.    Selection of materials for children follows the same criteria as for adults, with the additional guideline that material should be appropriate to the age group for which it is intended. This selection is done by the Children’s Librarian and is reviewed by the Director before purchasing.

B.    Responsibility for the reading, listening and viewing of children rests with their parents. Selection of materials for the adult collection is not restricted by the possibility that children may obtain materials their parents consider inappropriate.

9.  Gifts. The Library welcomes gifts of books and other materials with the understanding that it will evaluate them in accordance with the criteria applied to purchased materials. Materials not judged appropriate for the collection will be given to the Friends of the Library for sale to the public, excluding outdated nonfiction and damaged materials.

10. Maintaining the collection. In order to maintain the collection in its most attractive and useful condition, the staff will remove from the collection materials which are outdated, no longer being used, in bad condition, or available at other libraries in the state of Iowa. Materials no longer useful to the Library may be given to other libraries or nonprofit entities or given to the Friends of the Library for sale.

11. Selection priorities for DVD acquisition. Note that general selection criteria (quality, accuracy, lasting appeal) also apply to DVD selection.

A.   Children's titles. Literature-based films, with preference given to live dramatizations of classics of children's literature. Preferred length is 20 to 60 minutes (e.g., Wonderworks series, Rabbit Ears series). Popular films marketed to children (e.g., Harry Potter series). Also, informational topics appealing to children which lend themselves to visual presentation (e.g., sign-language instruction, National Geographic-style animal and geography features.

B.Young Adult and Adult titles. Cultural features: Example, PBS series. Informational features, such as how-to subjects and travel. Also, classic feature films, with preference for those which are or could have been rated G or PG, and which are not readily available for local rental.

Other sub-collections. The library provides large print and audio books on CDs for those patrons with visual imparities. The electronic collection, provided through Bridges and the State Library of Iowa via Overdrive, gives patrons access to audio books and eBooks that can be viewed with large print font from a number of devices. The library also provides collections of cake pans and board games.

Adopted July 2011
Reviewed March 2012, Revised February 2019