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Collections Review


Fresno State is facing a multi-year reduction in state funding due to the pandemic. In addition, the campus pivot to primarily virtual instruction will continue through the end of spring semester 2021. In light of these unprecedented challenges, the library has reviewed its collections expenditures to control costs. This page will be updated regularly to provide transparency about cancellations, as well as ongoing updates for library users.

Library Administration worked with librarians, staff, and departments to review our current collections, focusing on developing a more economically sustainable collections model. This year, primarily online and streaming resources were emphasized for retention, as well as resources with high usage rates and which serve the widest number of students possible.

Date Last Revised: July 6, 2021

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Our fall 2020 collections reduction target of approximately $425,000 anticipates the collections portion of the library’s overall budget reduction for 2020-2021. The target will be updated as further budget information becomes available.

This webpage has been updated with a list of resource cancellations and alternative resources. This will allow faculty to plan their teaching materials for spring, 2021. A process for requesting reinstatement of resources, including a request form, has also been provided. However, please note that our ability to reinstate items will be very limited in the current budget scenario.

Through this ongoing process of critical evaluation of resources, the library continues to create a rigorously curated collection to support campus instruction, programs, access, and student success. This process will be revisited and reported bi-annually, and incorporate ongoing consultation with campus faculty, students, and other library users.

Henry Madden Library understands you may have questions or concerns regarding this process. If so, here are the best contacts to reach us regarding Collections Review issues:

List of Cancellations

We have organized the resource lists according to the time period in which the cancellation will take effect. If you have difficulty finding alternatives for cancelled resources, you may also contact your subject librarian for assistance.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

To see a list of resources that have been cancelled or are currently being evaluated for cancellation, please see the List of Cancellations section above.

Renewal dates for electronic resources vary, so even if a resource has been identified for cancellation, you may continue to have access for a period of time. For journal titles, once access ends, you can request items via our interlibrary loan services (ILL). ILL service does impact the library’s budget, but is free to our users. We have calculated the impact on ILL costs into our decision-making process.

Our subscriptions to some journals that have been cancelled may be duplicated in other databases. To see which databases provide online access to a specific journal or magazine title, please use the Journals by Title search.

For journal titles, once access ends, you can request items via our interlibrary loan services (ILL). This service does cost the library money, but is free to our users. We have calculated the impact of ILL on the library budget into our decision-making process. Renewal dates for electronic resources vary, so even if a resource has been identified for cancellation, you may continue to have access for a period of time.

For databases, once access ends, you will no longer be able to visit that database through Madden Library. In limited circumstances, some databases may be available via the Fresno County Public Library.

If you have additional questions about accessing resources, please contact your subject librarian.

For our current round of cuts, the library has formed an ad hoc collections review committee which includes faculty from across the library’s service areas. This committee has been engaging in a systematic and thorough review of our subscriptions using a combination of quantitative and qualitative data, as well as input from subject librarians.

Our analysis includes format, frequency of use, annual cost, cost per use, acquisition method (acquired directly, via the CSU Chancellor’s Office, or via the Statewide California Electronic Library Consortium), and information about whether or not the content is discoverable via OneSearch. The potential availability and cost of resources via interlibrary loan is also considered. In addition, we’ve evaluated each resource in terms of its relevance to program and curriculum needs, its perceived impact on student success and well-being, comparable resources available, and perceived value for cost.

Together, the criteria and accompanying data have been used to assign each resource a relative ranking of 1, 2, or 3 (with a higher score indicating a higher priority to retain).

In addition to the pandemic-related budget cuts the library is facing this year, the library also faced rising costs and reduced budgets last year.

To make up the shortfall, we identified 91 individual journal titles and ten journal packages for cancellation, totaling around $200,000 in reductions. These titles are included in the List of Cancellations section above. Because of these earlier reductions, the work of identifying resources for additional cuts is more difficult.

Although we don’t yet have an established budget for the current year, we’ve planned for a 13% cut, with a target of approximately $425,000. The 13% reduction applies to the amount spent on collections last fiscal year.

The Fresno State community can engage in activities that can affect changes in scholarly communication, including:

  • Publishing research in open access journals to eliminate financial barriers for your readers. Please consult the Directory of Open Access journals for titles in your field.
  • When possible, sharing your research output in Fresno State’s Scholarworks Digital Repository.
  • Being aware of publisher policies regarding authors’ retention of copyright.
  • Supporting efforts by professional associations, societies, and other organizations to develop less-costly alternative means of distributing scholarly information.
  • Examining the costs of scholarly journals in which you publish, as well as any service on editorial boards.

To suggest a purchase, please complete our online Purchase Suggestions form.

We welcome any and all feedback on this difficult process. We want to hear how the library’s resources are being used for teaching and learning. If you feel that a resource has been cancelled in error or would like to advocate for the reinstatement of a resource, please complete our online form.

In spring 2020, when instruction moved primarily online, librarians requested faculty input on new electronic resources that would support students in the virtual environment. In response, $25,000 of new online resources were purchased prior to the fall 2020 semester.