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K-State Today

November 7, 2018

K-State Libraries announce subscription materials for nonrenewal

Submitted by Sarah McGreer Hoyt

Due to ongoing budget reductions and continued inflation of subscription materials, K-State collections development librarians have spent the last several months reviewing resource usage.

After careful consideration, we have determined that these items will not be renewed in Fiscal Year 2019:

  • ABELL (Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature) (Database).
  • eHRAF (Database).
  • Historical Abstracts (Database).
  • Library Literature and Information Science Full Text (Database).
  • Public Administration Abstracts (Database).
  • Emerald Management Xtra (Electronic book and journal package).
  • Individual journal titles from packages including Oxford, Cambridge, and Duke.

Decisions were based in part on feedback the campus community provided over the past several months on an extensive list of journals and subscription packages.

In total, more than 150 faculty and researchers reviewed a list of more than 350 resources and they provided nearly 900 comments. The detailed feedback helped library staff better understand what resources faculty members use in their scholarship and teaching as well as the potential impact of future cancellations.

"The survey responses played a key role in some difficult final decisions," said Joelle Pitts, acting head of content development. "We learned, for instance, of important cross-disciplinary usage of some materials and about new strategic directions in research and curriculum. In as many cases as possible we decided not to cancel a title based on that feedback."

In order to track all of the Libraries' nonrenewals for fiscal years 2014-19, Pitts and her department have created an interactive database

"We wanted to create something that would easily convey the big picture over time," Pitts said. "This tool allows researchers to identify titles with reduced access and gives them an idea of the financial decisions that we've had to make every year. Honestly, we'll have to continue identifying nonrenewals unless there are changes to the university budget situation and publishers' relentless price inflation."

The K-State Libraries' academic services librarians are available to help researchers access any of the nonrenewed materials that they need. 

"We cannot avoid cuts altogether, so our next step is to work with each department to identify alternate resources or alternate access points for titles that were not renewed," said Adriana Gonzalez, head of academic services. "We're extremely grateful for their engagement in this process."

A few ways users can help manage collection dollars include:

  • Using permanent article links in K-State Online rather than uploading a PDF.
  • Using interlibrary loan to request what you need for courses/research rather than asking a colleague or friend to send you a copy from another institution.
  • Consider publishing in and using open and alternative resources.

When the K-State community uses permalinks and interlibrary loan, the Libraries have comprehensive statistics of the actual demand for specific materials. That allows us to make collection adjustments over time and build arguments for future allocation increases.

If you need assistance creating permalinks, incorporating permalinks in Canvas or identifying alternate resources, please contact your academic services librarian.

For additional information about these nonrenewals or other collection development questions, contact Lori Goetsch, dean of Libraries or Joelle Pitts