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Collection Development



The mission of the J. V. Fletcher Library is to serve its clientele as a progressive, responsive public library resource, connecting users of all ages with their popular materials needs, without regard to format and serving as an informational center providing materials on the issues and interests of day-to-day living. A strong secondary role is the provision of educational and informational support to students pursuing both formal and informal educational paths. While the Fletcher Library strives to be both reflective of, and responsive to, the community, it also seeks to be in the vanguard of professional library services - attracting and leading the community into informational, cultural and technological literacy in a warm and welcoming public setting.

(Library Planning Process, 2006).

To support this mission, library materials are selected, organized, and made accessible in order to anticipate and meet the diverse needs of library clientele.

Policy on Library Materials Selection - Pursuant to Massachusetts General Law

Chapter 78, Section 33, As Amended-- and Reconsideration

This Policy of the J. V. Fletcher Library Board of Trustees has established that:

1)  The Library shall develop collections of merit and significance, whether acquired by purchase or gift.  Each item of material shall be considered in terms of its value to the collection and the audience for whom it is intended.  Reading and language abilities of the citizens will be considered.

2) Materials to be evaluated shall include a variety of books for young people and adults, in hardcover and paperback editions; financial services; data base services; electronic formats; large print books; periodicals; newspapers; pamphlets; recordings; videocassettes; films; tapes; microforms; maps; music scores; new technologies, and; the equipment needed for all borrowers, including the handicapped, to  use the materials.

3)  Materials shall be evaluated according to objective standards.  Flexibility, open-mindedness and responsiveness are required in the process.  Consideration shall be given to expanding knowledge, changing social values, technological advantages and cultural differences where appropriate.  As growth and change occur in these areas, the Library shall reevaluate materials which were not acquired.  

4) Some materials may be judged primarily in terms of artistic merit, scholarship or their value as human documents; others will be selected to satisfy recreational and entertainment needs.

5)  Different viewpoints on controversial issues will be acquired, including those which may have unpopular or unorthodox positions.  The Library recognizes that those materials which offend, shock or bore one reader may be considered pleasing, meaningful, or significant by another.

6)  To avoid unnecessary duplication, consideration will be given to materials available to the public through the Collection Development guidelines of the Merrimack Valley Library Consortium, Inc., through other area libraries and through other community agencies.

7)  All collections will be widely accessible to all borrowers, regardless of their location, through extensive interlibrary and intralibrary loan services and through the daily delivery service.

8) Recognizing that a materials selection policy can result in complaints from public at large who may not understand the reasons why certain items have been  included in the collection, the Library shall develop procedures for reconsideration of the item in question.  Any patron has the right to question the purchase of an item for the Library collection.

9)  The Library Board of Trustees supports the American Library Association's (ALA)  Bill of Rights, ALA's Freedom to Read Statement,
ALA's Library Rights for Adults, and ALA's Free Access to Libraries for Minors.

10) Librarians and Library governing bodies cannot assume the role of parents or the functions of parental authority in the private relationship between parent and child. Thus, parents - and only parents - have the right and the responsibility to restrict the access of their children to library resources. Parents who do not want their children to have access to certain library services, materials, or facilities should so advise their children. Otherwise, each reader is privileged to select for himself among the books the library has purchased, and no one is obliged to read what he does not like. (See also Library Card Registration and Responsibilities Policy).

11) Funds do not permit unlimited purchase of specialized research, scholarly or highly technical materials and no attempt will be
made to supply textbooks or other curriculum-related materials used in the schools and colleges of the  area, except as such
materials also serve the general public.  It is not the purpose of the collection to serve as a supplementary elementary, high school  or college library.

Responsibility for the Selection of Library Materials

The Board of Trustees formulates policies for the selection of all materials within the Broad framework of the objectives and purposes of the Library.  The Trustees delegate the responsibility of implementing these policies through materials selection to the Library Director and, under his/her direction, to the professional staff who are qualified for this activity by reason of education, training, and experience. Suggestions from staff members (other than those officially assigned the selection responsibility) and from library users are encouraged and seriously considered in the selection process.

Goals of Selection

The J. V. Fletcher Library selects, makes available, and promotes the use of library materials, whatever the format, which:

1)   Enrich and support the educational, recreational, and informational needs of the users, taking into consideration their varied interests, abilities, and learning styles.

2) Represent differing viewpoints on a subject.

3) Reflect the problems, aspirations, attitudes, and ideals of a pluralistic society.

4) Support business, cultural, recreational, and civic activities in the community.

5) Stimulate self-understanding and growth.

6) Enhance job-related knowledge and skills.

7) Increase knowledge of and participation in the affairs of the community, the country, and the world.

8) Are appropriate to the level of the targeted user.

The collections for young people are aimed at meeting the diverse recreational, cultural, and informational needs of that segment of the population from infancy through adolescence.  Materials are included to provide enjoyment, stretch the imagination, cultivate a love of books and reading, stimulate creative abilities, supplement study, and provide an awareness of the broad spectrum of moral and social values.  Materials are selected which vary in format, content, and level to meet wide-ranging interests and demands, to help young people understand their own development, and to prepare them for informed participation in society.

Criteria guides for Selection

The evaluation of materials is characterized by flexibility, open-mindedness, and a responsiveness to the changing needs of the citizens of the Town of Westford and of the Commonwealth.  These changing needs require that materials be evaluated initially and on a continuing basis.  As a result, materials not recommended for purchase originally may, in fact, be purchased at a later date.  The converse --  that materials may still be considered unsuitable or unnecessary for the collection -- is also possible.

Purchases for the library are made on the basis of recommendations in library journals, professional and literary magazines, publishers trade magazines, and newspaper reviews.  

Materials are evaluated as a whole and not on the basis of a particular section or sections.  A work will not be excluded from the Librarys collection because it presents an aspect of life honestly or because of frankness of expression.

While a single standard cannot be applied to each potential item for selection, materials are judged by appropriate criteria.  In some instances, these criteria include artistic merit, scholarship, or the value of the material to the informational needs of the community.  In other instances the criterion may be substantial demand.

In the process of building a diversified collection which supports the Librarys mission, the following objective criteria are applied to purchased and donated materials:

General Criteria

1) Availability and suitability of format.

2) Suitability of subject, style, and level for the intended audience.

3) Critics' and staff's reviews.

4) Reputation of the publisher or producer; authority and significance of the author, composer, filmmaker, etc.

5) Timeliness or permanence of the material.

6) Quality of writing, design, illustrations, or production.

7) Relevance to community needs.

8) Potential and/or known demand for the material.

9) Relative importance in comparison with existing materials in the collection on the same subject.

10) Availability and accessibility of the same material in the regional or statewide area.

12) Price.

Specific Criteria for the Evaluation of Factual Works

1) The work contains timely and accurate  information .

2) Competence of author.

3) Objectivity.

4) Comprehensiveness and depth of treatment.

5) Clarity of presentation.  

6) Usability of arrangement.

7) Inclusion in standard bibliographies and indices.

Specific Criteria for the Evaluation of Works Representing an Opinion

1) Representation of a challenging, though extreme or minority, point of view.

2) Clarity and logic of presentation.

3) Usability of arrangement.

4) Comprehensiveness and depth of treatment.

5) Degree and accomplishment of purpose.

6) Availability of materials on the subject.

Specific Criteria for the Evaluation of Works of the Imagination

1) Representation of an important movement, genre, trend, or culture.

2) Vitality and originality.

3) Artistic presentation and quality evidenced in the plot, setting, theme characterization, point of view, and style.

4) Sustained interest and entertainment.

Withdrawal and Discarding of Library Materials

Materials are regularly withdrawn from the library's collection because:

1) The work may be factually out-of-date-- that is, no longer timely or accurate.

2) A more comprehensive source on the subject has since been published.

3) The work may be so badly worn or damaged that it  cannot be bound or mended.

4) The work may be less expensive to replace than repair.

5) The work, a once-popular material, is no longer regularly requested.

6) Space considerations may necessitate the removal of some items from the collection.  

Materials deemed lost or missing are officially withdrawn from the record of Library holdings.

Replacement of Library Materials

A replacement is an item purchased to take the place of an identical title previously in the collection.  It is not the Librarys policy to automatically replace all materials withdrawn because of loss, damage, or wear. It is the Librarys policy to evaluate the need for replacement based upon the following two factors:

1) Existence of adequate coverage of the subject, especially if more current material is available.

2) Demand for the specific title.

Purchase of Multiple Copies
Where high interest or high demand necessitates, the Library will strive to purchase multiple copies of titles, formats or volumes.


Donations of books and materials to the library are welcomed, with the understanding that the same criteria of selection will be applied before adding donated materials to the collection.  Those materials not selected will be refused, or sold, or discarded. No donations which are accompanied by qualifying instructions as to disposition, housing, or use will be accepted.

Gifts of Library Materials

Gifts of books and other materials are accepted with the understanding that they may be used, routed to the Friends of the J. V. Fletcher Library, Inc. Book sales or disposed of as the Library determines is appropriate.  New titles acquired in this manner are subject to the basic standards of selection.  Replacements and duplicate copies are added to the collection if needed.  The cost of processing and the availability of shelving space are also factors in determining the acceptance of gifts.  The Library does not provide evaluations of gifts for tax deductions or other purposes.

Local Authors  

Every attempt is made to acquire titles by local authors (Westford and towns in the Merrimack Valley) that are published by mainstream publishers.  Titles by local authors that are self-published are not added to the collection unless there is a compelling reason to do so (such as valuable local content and/or high local interest.)

Westford Writers

Westford writers often donate their books which have been published by non-mainstream publishers.  If the donated book does not otherwise meet our collection development criteria, we will add the donated title to our collection with the call number Westford Writer. However, we will not purchase such titles; they will only be added to the collection if they are donated by the author.  

Materials Preservation

Certain materials of long-term value and/or usefulness may be preserved through binding, preservation techniques, scanning, transcribing or putting on microforms, or some other technique.

Reconsideration of Library Materials

Procedures have been developed for the reconsideration of materials to assure that objections or complaints are handled in an attentive and consistent manner.  Once an item has been accepted for purchase, based on the Library Materials Selection Policy of the Library Board of Trustees, it will not be automatically removed upon request. (See Addendum I.)




The choice of library materials by users is an individual matter.  While a person may reject materials for himself/herself, he/she cannot exercise censorship to restrict access to the materials by others.

Recognizing that a diversity of materials may result in some requests for reconsideration, the following procedures have been developed to assure that objections or complaints are handled in an attentive and consistent manner.

Any resident of the Town of Westford that has a concern regarding the selection of a specific title is welcome to discuss the interpretation of these principles with the Library Director.  A formal review of any title or material is initiated only upon the submittal of a Request for Reconsideration form. Upon submittal of this form, professional selectors on the staff will read, review and comparatively assess the material being reconsidered. A formal written response and assessment will be forthcoming from the Director, along with a copy of the Library Material Selection Policy and any other appropriate documentation.

Should the patron desire further edification from the governing body of the Library, the resident should then put their concerns in writing to the Board of Trustees.  The Board will then study the matter relative to the individual concern and the selection principles as promulgated.


1. Collection Development Goals FY03-FY07 (Adult Circulating Collections)

2. Collection Development Goals for the Childrens Collection of the J. V. Fletcher Library

3. Collection Development Goals for the Compact Disc, Audiocassette and Videocassette Collections

4. Collection Development Policy Plan for the Information Services Department

5. Collection Development Plan for Serials

6. Collection Development Plan for Young Adults

7.  J. V. Fletcher Library Collection Strengths Identified by the MVLC, Inc. Collection Development Committee

8.  Last Copy Policy of the Merrimack Valley Library Consortium, Inc.


Adult Circulating Collection

Adult collection development is based first and foremost on selection guidelines set by The American Library Association in the "Library Bill of Rights" and the J. V. Fletcher Librarys "Collection Development Policy."

Each year specific subject areas within the adult circulating collection are targeted for development. Criteria for creating these target areas include: patron usage and requests; replacement of outdated holdings; and filling important gaps in the collection.  As always, review journals are the primary resource for selecting titles.

Current goals, FY'03-FY'07, are shaped as well by several "service responses" outlined in the "J. V. Fletcher Library Long Range Plan 2002- 2005." As a result current goals include focus on bestsellers, audio formats, and topical issues.   

FY'02  Update current travel guide series, Fodor's and Let's Go.

Expand or introduce new series" such as, Insight Guides, Michelin Green Guides, Frommers, and Zagat Restaurant Surveys.

Expand Audiobook collection (order duplicate copies, increase size of current collection), especially Books-on-CD.

FY'03 Increase orders for, and number of copies of, best-selling  new titles (particularly contemporary fiction and mysteries.)

       Update and develop Computer Technology Non-Fiction, Dewey ranges 004-008

FY'04   Replace and update entire Biography collection.

          Diversify and broaden genre range in paperbacks (add Bestsellers, contemporary fiction, mysteries, science fiction,

          and classics.)           

FY'05   Evaluate and update Short Stories, Plays, and Poetry Collections.

         Evaluate and update Sports, Cookbooks, Gardening and Fine Art Collections.

FY'06  Update and replace Adult Fiction Collection for authors A-L.

FY'07  Update and replace Adult Fiction Collection for authors M-Z.

Collection Development Goals for the Adult Circulating Collection

J. V. Fletcher Library   March 1997


A = High demand: purchase most everything and sometimes in multiple copies.

B = Demand:  buy well reviewed books of interest to general reader, but with  budget limitations in mind.

C = Some interest:  buy with caution basis books, well known authors, with a general reader in mind.

D = Special interest:  buy the occasional book but keep in mind the long term appeal of the subject.

E = Not purchased from Adult Circulating Collection budget.


1.  Bestseller list and very popular authors:  A

2.  Friends Rental Collection:  Choose from best sellers, light pleasure reading, and titles with hold lists.  Consult spreadsheet of past FRC titles, circulation records.

3. General:  C.

4. Historical:  C.

5. Mysteries: B.

6. Paperback rack:

General fiction especially romance: B

Best sellers:  A

Mysteries:  B

Science Fiction: CTitles for book clubs, reading assignments: A

7.  Romance:  B.

8. Science Fiction:  C.

9. Short Stories: D.

10. Spy/adventure:  B

11. Translations of major  foreign authors:  D.


  001.   C   Computer titles from selected series, i.e. Dummies series by IDG,
              and for Busy People by Osborne for general usage.   

  031    E  Encyclopedia sets for circulation transferred from Reference

              Collection when new edition received for that collection.

100      D Basic introductory works on philosophy and psychology used.

             Specific original sources of limited interest.

  133    D  Titles on the occult, witchcraft, etc.  Superstitions assigned annually by local school system.

200      D         General introductions to all types of religions and their influence upon a person's life circulate.

                    Basic books on mythology. Greek and Roman topics used heavily for school assignments.

300      D/E    Almanacs transferred from the Reference Collection when that collection receives the most recent edition.  Purchase others as


            D     Political science, law, government, and folklore purchased in light of general interest and long term usage.

 370     C     Test preparation study guides for GMAT, TOFEL, SAT, PSAT, etc. should be updated on an annual basis.  Guides to college

                 admission process and related topics heavily used.

            C   Interest in current educational theory and techniques as well as quality education supported by Westford for Excellence in Public
 395     C   Etiquette, customs, and weddings should be purchased as published.

400      D  Dictionaries, grammars, and refresher courses for French, Spanish, German, Italian, and English. Other languages as


            D   Basic materials supporting English as a Second Language and literacy materials for both the teacher and student.


 510     B  Need basic refresher books on mathematics:  algebra, calculus, trigonometry, etc.

          D   Earth sciences for both the general adult reader and student collected.'

590      B  General information on animals, birds, and plants for middle and high school students.  Time-Life variety especially useful.


 610     B   Informative, accurate, and current books on medicine for the lay person.

          D   Personal accounts and reminiscences have a limited audience.

         D    Diet and exercise books should be purchases only if medically sound or in demand.

 620     D  Electronics, especially small appliance repair, is popular.

 630     C  Gardening books for specific, popular and regional types of plants, and landscaping techniques.

          D  General books on pets, especially dogs and cats, and their care circulate. Titles on specific breeds not purchased at this time.

 640     D  Homecare and cleaning techniques purchased on limited basis.

          D  Cookbooks of New England and foreign countries purchased to round out collection.  Use discretion on cookbooks for specific

            appliances and cuisine.  

         C  Childcare and development very popular.

 650     C  Basic business guides, strategies, and small business skills.

          C  Resume, interviewing, and job hunting techniques in demand.

 690     B Home repair with clear directions and projects of interest to the suburban home owner very popular.


720     D   Architecture, house plans, and landscape design used.  Basic books on periods needed.

 740-770 D  Continue to develop a basic collection on crafts, drawing, painting, and photography techniques.  Purchase titles supporting local


 790     C  Purchase titles on coaching and basic techniques for sports. Books on fishing and hunting also used.

800      C  Purchase collections of poetry indexed in Grangers Index to Poetry and those of major American and British authors; plays by major

              American British authors; and collected works of major authors.   

         D   Light demand locally for critical works and sources for non-English plays, poetry, and prose.

900    B         Travel guides to New England, East and West Coast States, selected counties and cities purchased annually.  Selections made

                  on a three , year rotating basis from Fodors, Lonely Planet/Moon Publications/other sources, Let's Go publishers providing varied


            B   Basic histories of counties and time periods for the reader needed. Personal reminiscences and diaries do not circulated.

                Good secondary sources preferred over primary sources.



           D    Buy major historical figures of interest for home work, best sellers, or very popular figures of national note.  Titles should be well

                 written and of long term use.  



Westford is a growing community with an abundance of young children.  The population is over 18,000 and is projected to grow to 20,000 by the year 2000.  Almost one third of the population is under age 17.  Schools are overcrowded and plans for expansions are already in progress.  The Library's Circulation is fourth in the Merrimack Valley Library Consortium.  The children's and Young Adult Materials Budget is 23,000 as of FY'96.  The Children's Book Circulation is the largest per month  of the entire library (8,000 to 13,000 per month).  Programs are sold out and waiting lists have become longer.  Based on this evidence, the percentages of money spent on formats, ages and subjects, reflect these growing trends.

The Juvenile collection is carefully chosen for children with all abilities from birth to grade 6, with the emphasis on materials which entertain, stimulate the imagination, develop reading ability, and enable children to learn about the world around them.  Materials are purchased in print and non-print formats including, but not limited to, books, magazines, videos, tapes, puzzles, kits, and toys.  The Standards for Public Library Service to children in Massachusetts 1995 is used as an important tool in selecting materials as are the professional review journals such as School Library Journal, Booklist, Horn Book, Kliatt, and Voya.  The purchase of certain items, such as encyclopedias and reference materials used to support Young Adults are coordinated with the Head of Adult Information services.  Although the collection does contain materials of use in completing assignments, it is not designed t o provide school textbooks or other materials which support only the school curriculum.

Children are not limited to the special collections selected for them.  They are encouraged to make full use of the entire collection the extent that their interests and capabilities allow.

A         =          High Demand

B         =          Demand

C         =          Some Interest

D         =          Special Interest


Evaluation % of Budget Spent
Easy Collection:  (4550 Circ./mo.)    
E:  Picture Books A  
E(r):  Easy Readers have controlled vocabulary A  
E(Baby):  Board Books suitable for infants and Toddlers A
E(Rain):  Books from the Reading Rainbow TV Series
E(Sibling):  Books about new babies in the house A
E(Potty) A
E(Holiday) A
JUNIOR FICTION:  JF (500 Circ./mo.  
Fantasy B
Sci-Fi B
Mystery A
Short Story C
Adventure B
Sports A
Horror A
Historical Fiction B
Realistic Fiction A
J PAPERBACKS:  (1250 Circ./mo.)  
Series:  Goosebumps, Babysitters, etc. A
Realistic Fiction A
Mystery A
Fantasy B
Sci-Fi B
Sports A
Adventure A

Evaluation % of Budget Spent
000:  Encyclopedias, superstitions, bibliography A  
100:  Death, Issues (bullying, teasing, etc.) C  
200:  Myths, Saints B  
300:  Almanacs, World Cultures, Background Notes A  
400:  Dictionaries Languages B  
500:  Science, Wildlife A  
600:  Inventions, Pets B  
700:  Sports, Games, Arts B  
800:  Quotations, Poetry, Authors B  
900:  History, Biography, Indians, Presidents A  
J NONFICTION (2000 Circ./Mo.)  
000:  (50)  Computers, Bigfoot, Loch Ness C  
100:  (50)  Death, Issues (Bullying, teasing, tantrums, etc.
200:  (60)  Myths, Religion, Bible Stories C  
300:  (125)  Issues:  Divorce, families, Cultures of America, Ecology, folklore,
                 Natural Resources, Legal System

400:  (18)  Foreign Languages C  
500:  (550)  Science, Math, Earth science, Dinosaurs, Animals
600:  (300)  Invention, Human body, Drugs, Machinery,  Weapons, Pets, Food

700:  (250)  Arts, Crafts, Drawing, Sports A  
800:  (75)    Poetry, Literary Collections C  
900:  (325)  States, Countries, Indians A  
JBIOG:  (150)  Famous People, Blacks and  Women
SPECIAL COLLECTIONS:  (no Circ. data available)  
JRR:  Raised-to-Read, Early Childhood, Thematic works
JPR:  Parenting, Birthday Parties A  
JScouting:  Girl Scouts C  
Evaluation % of Budget Spent
JCassettes:  (200)  Music, Books on Tape, Holidays, Classics
JToys:  (8)  Puppets and Books A  
JKits:  (2)  Sick Kits, Sunshine Kits C  
JPuzzles:  (23) A  
JMags (not included in budget):  (80) B  

Evaluation % of Budget Spent
Preschool to Grade 2:   18
Easy Books:  E     
Grades 3-6   66
Adults   4
Young Adult   11
Postage   1


Evaluation % of Budget Spent
Book:   94
YA  (Young Adult)     
Non-Book:    5
JMags (not included in budget)     
Postage   1


Evaluation Scale:

A         =          High Demand

B         =          Demand

C         =          Some Interest

D         =          Special Interest



% of Budget Spent
Popular 1900s  2000 A
New Age B
Country C
Folk B
Jazz B
Musical/Soundtrack A
International C
Holiday (Seasonal) B
Classical A
Miscellaneous D

The CD Collection is used by Patrons of all ages and interests.  A new selection of Language CDs is being added and increased interest in International Music has encouraged me to develop this part of the collection.  

Selections are based on Patron requests, reviews in Billboard, Jazz CD, Entertainment Weekly, Ingram, and Baker & Taylor.  Suggestions for Rock, Folk and Alternative Rock are often made by the sales staff at vendors specializing in music selection.  The NPR Guide to Classical Music is used in developing the Classical Music Collection.

Replacements are made of worn classics in all categories. The budget does not allow for many multiple copies, however donations account for some multiple copies.  Weeding, so far, has been done by discarding damaged discs.  Rare recordings are retained even when circulation figures are low.


Minor Chord (primarily for Folk and Country); Baker and Taylor; Wireless Audio Catalog; In the Groove; Barnes and Noble. WALK-IN: Minor Chord, Barnes & Noble.


Stereo Review; Billboard; Entertainment; CD Journal.


           Monthly                    Pop Titles

           April & May                Large Order

           Nov. 1st                   Holiday Titles


Evaluation Scale:

A         =          High Demand

B         =          Demand

C         =          Some Interest

D         =          Special Interest


% of Budget Spent
Current best sellers A
Mysteries C
Science Fiction D
Classics B

Non Fiction:  
Business C
Self Help B
Humor C
Language D

The sound cassette collection is used by Adult Listeners who are mostly homebound or commuters.  A small selection is used by high school students.

Selections are based on Patron requests and reviews in Baker & Taylor and Ingram. Replacements are routinely made of high demand items and classics; language and self-help titles are popular. Duplicate copies are usually provided by Patron donations.  Rely only on well-known publishers. Weeding is done by discarding broken items.  Cassettes with low circulation are also considered for discard.


Ingram; Baker and Taylor; Barnes & Noble. WALK-IN: Barnes & Noble.


Ingram; Library Journal.


Month: Pattern:
Jul -Aug Large Purchase
Feb. Large Purchase

Smaller monthly orders as needed to supplement.


Evaluation Scale:

A         =          High Demand

B         =          Demand

C         =          Some Interest

D         =          Special Interest

% of Budget Spent
Children ages 1-7 A
Children ages 7-12 B
Adult Feature A
Foreign B
Music B
Cooking D
Documentary C
Exercise D
How To D
Literature/Language D
Parents Collection D
Computers D
Science D
Sports D
Health D
Travel D

The video collection is used by Patrons of all ages.  The highest circulation is in Children's, ages 1-7, and the Feature Film category.  We have a segment of the population that enjoys the Foreign Films.  Higher rated films are purchased as are well-reviewed films that seem to be available only in the city theaters.  In developing the collection, a large portion of the budget was spent on Adult non-feature films.  This category has a slower rate of circulation than the rest of the collection and because of space limitations, more of the budget is being expended on duplicate copies of high demand feature films and better childrens videos, i.e.  Richard Scarry tapes, Childrens Circle and Disney Films.

Selections are based on reviews in Video Librarian, New Yorker Magazine, R. Ebert's Video Companion, Baker & Taylor, Ingram Book Company catalog and Patrons requests.

Replacements are made of popular and classic films.  Weeding is done by discarding damaged videos.  Videos with low circulation are also considered for discard.


Ingram; Baker and Taylor; Midwest; Critics Choice; Facets. WALK-IN: Pheasant Lane Mall Video Store.


Dave Brudnoy; Roger Ebert; Video Librarian; Entertainment; Facets.


Months: Pattern:
July - Sept Pop. Feature; Childrens; Better Foreign
Oct - Dec Holiday & New Releases
Jan - Mar Feature Replacements; New Non-feature; Better Foreign
Apr - May Last Order for Fiscal Year; Large children and Family purchase



A= High Use

B= Regular Use

C= Occasional Use

D= Special Use

E= No Demand for Use



000            A= High Tech Directories in Business area; C= computer dictionaries

001.           B= Book Review Digest,  C=  Library Science

031            A= Associations Directories and Publishing Information such as Ulrich's            

070                (Adult) Periodical Directories, A= Directories, A= Student assignments     

 100            A=Occult encyclopedias (Student)

 150           A=Psychology and Philosophy (adult) B= student

200          B=Religion (adult)  B=student

               A=Mythology (student)

                A=Encyclopedias of Religion (student)

 300          A= Business materials  (adult)

A= (student) social issues, women's studies, ethnic studies, statistics, politics, law, government, education, financial aid, educational testing

400      A=(student)    Languages, dictionaries, grammar, non-English languages costume, folklore, holidays.

500       A=Sciences (student)

            Science encyclopedias, dictionaries, astronomy, chemistry, biology, ecology mathematics, physics.

600     A=Business and medical (adult)

          A= engineering and astronautics, gardens, nutrition, formulas  Business writing. 629 auto mechanics


700   B= Arts (adult)    A=arts (student)

        Encyclopedias of art, music, theatre, films, television, radio, sports.

800  B=Literature (adult)  A= student

       A=poetry, American and English literature, non-English literature, criticism, indexes to poetry, short stories, plays


900  C=History (Adult)  A=student

       A=   encyclopedias of history, maps, geography, chronologies, biographies,   ancient history, British and United States History, New England history,  ethnic history


         Town Reports, Committees, Departments.

        College Catalogs

        Telephone Books

Collection Development Policy Plan Information Services Dept.


A= High Use

B=Regular Use

C=Occasional Use

D=Special Use

E=No Demand Use

Electronic Media (CD-ROM)

Computer Select      A= Adult    D= Student

CorpTech                A=Adult     D=Student

PhoneDisc               A=Adult      D=Student

Boston Globe          A=Adult      A=Student

EBSCO                   A=Adult     A=Student

Monarch Notes        C=Adult     C=Student


The following goals were established in conjunction with the Serials Collection Development Policy:

         accommodate patrons' wish list items

         purchasing of local newspapers from all the surrounding towns

         purchasing  more consumer serials to support the patron questions in the Information  Services Department

         Consumer's Digest

         automotive pricing newspapers

         review the current selection of serials

         validate their usefulness to the collection

         analyze the strength/weakness of the collection in view of the Serials Collection Development Policy

         develop a subject wish list notebook to help attract public donations for collection enhancement

         consolidate and streamline the records of the serials collection


The purchase of serials in the J.V. Fletcher Library is coordinated with the input of the Childrens, Fine Arts, Information Services and Young Adult departments.  In addition, feedback is gained from staff that have specific fields of expertise such as adult services, computers and, the elderly.  The public also gives suggestions through the use of the Patron Suggestion books located in the Information Services department and by the main desk.

Serials directly supports the Information Services Department by providing supplementary materials such as annual reports, college catalogs, maps, transportation schedules, and vertical file articles.  


After accumulating suggestions from the staff, the public, and professional review sources, serials are purchased with the following characteristics used as criteria:

1.      balance to the collection

2.      cost

3.      quality

4.      long term value

5.      universal appeal

Format purchase determination is decided by usage and long term retention.

Paper copy retention of serials is determined by:

1.      space

2.      availability of the same serial in microfiche/film format

3.      long term usage

Serial paper discards are given away in the following order of preference:

1.      Westford school teachers

2.      J.V. Fletcher Library staff

3.      the public  


At the J.V. Fletcher Library, the Young Adult Department is organized as a separately identified section of the Youth Services Department, representing 11% of the book budget.  It is the goal of the Young Adult Department to provide a smooth transition and bridge for adolescents in grades 6 - 12 from the Juvenile collections and services to the Adult collections and services.

The Young Adult collection represents the unique needs and interests of adolescents.  Materials selected for teenagers contribute to their intellectual and emotional growth as well as appeal to their popular, current and recreational interests.  Selections are made with an awareness of the variety of interests, backgrounds, reading skills and developmental / maturity levels within this age group.  Therefore, the Young Adult collection will include adult titles as well as some juvenile titles.

The primary focus to the Young Adult collection is personal interest materials and recreational reading.  The collection must be kept current and attractive and will include hardcover and paperback fiction and nonfiction, magazines, audiobooks and compact discs.

The mainstay of the Young Adult collection is the fiction collection, therefore a proportionally larger percentage of the budget will be allocated to Young Adult fiction.  Since paperbacks are the preferred format, a greater number of paperback fiction will be purchased in comparison to hardcover fiction.  Since the cost of paperbacks is usually 1/3 to 1/2 less than the cost of hardcovers, the budget allocations for both will remain approximately equal.

Three new collections are currently being developed (as of  FY 95):  

YA nonfiction; YA audio books; and YA compact discs.

Young Adult nonfiction titles will be selected because of their special appeal to this age group.  Although the collection contains materials of use in completing assignments, it is not designed to provide school textbooks or other materials which support only the school curriculum.  The purchase of certain items such as encyclopedias and reference materials used to support Young Adults are coordinated with Adult Information Services.  

Young Adult audio books will include well reviewed general fiction and classics.

Young Adult compact discs will be selected according to current trends and popularity.  Criteria for selection will include input from the Westford Young Adult  population.

Collection Development Plan for Young Adult Collection

Evaluation Scale:

           A = High Demand:  purchase many and sometimes in multiple copies.

           B = Demand:  well reviewed books of  interest to general reader, but

           with budget limitations in mind.

            C = Some  Demand

           D = Special Interest:  buy the occasional book, but keep in mind the

            long term appeal of the subject.

           E = Not Purchased


         Popular Authors:  A

         Romance:  A

         Thriller / Horror: A

         Mystery:  B

         Science Fiction:  B

         Fantasy:  B

         Adventure:  B

         Graphic Novels:  B

         Historical:  C

Classics:  C

         Short Stories:  C



This is a new collection begun in FY 95.  At this time there are no statistics  available to make a comparative evaluation scale.  As the collection grows, an evaluation scale will become appropriate in the future.  Titles that have been purchased include the following topic and interest areas:  

         Teen issues:  self-esteem, teen - parent problems, dating, pregnancy, eating disorders, substance abuse, peer pressure.

         Human sexuality:  sexual activity, abstinence, AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases, sexual orientation, puberty.

         Emotional / Psychological Issues:  depression, loneliness, suicide,  death and illness, stress and anxiety, sexual and psychological abuse.

         Encyclopedias and other general reference materials  




Titles are selected based on favorable reviews and level of popularity in the print version.  Some classics will also be included.


Titles will be selected according to current trends and popularity.  Input from the teen population will also be considered.


J.V. Fletcher Library | 50 Main Street | Westford, MA 01886-2599
978-692-5555 |