Weeding the Library Collection: Updated Self-Paced Course

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Mention collection development and most librarians think of the selection of new materials for the library. Weeding - removing library materials from your collection - is an often forgotten, yet integral part of collection development. In this updated course, Weeding the Library Collection, you will first discover why that is true, and then learn the techniques of weeding, develop policies and avoid common pitfalls. 

The information in this course is relevant to all types of libraries and addresses the weeding of all types of library materials, including adult and children's collections, as well as print and non-print materials.

The impact of weeding your library collection is a true reward for your library, your staff, and your community. You’ll keep your library looking better, the best materials will be easier to find, and you’ll save the time of your library customer.

Key learning objectives of this course include:

  • Developing clarity and decisiveness around the reasons for weeding your library collection. 
  • Identifying print and online resources to aid in planning an effective weeding program. 
  • Adapting published weeding guidelines to develop criteria for weeding their collection. 
  • Developing a weeding plan for the library which includes a schedule, criteria for specific subject areas and material types, and procedures. 
  • Explaining positive solutions to avoid common pitfalls and problems with weeding such as "unweedable" gifts, "sacred" memorial donations, the "recommended collection size" trap, fear of admitting a selection error, and others. 
  • Incorporating weeding in the library's collection management policy. 
  • Identify tools associated with automated library catalogs that can assist in weeding such as inventory reports, collection age reports, and others.

Read, reflect, and get ready!

As you go through this course, you’ll find a number of ways to reflect on your learning, take steps to prepare and implement weeding projects (big and small!), and the importance of communicating with important stakeholders: your staff, your board, and your community. Access the course today!