Collections Philosophy & Vision

In recognition of the university community’s research, teaching, and learning needs, the UTSA Libraries strive to provide broad, timely access to information in a variety of formats. Our focus is on acquiring materials in electronic formats, allowing us to provide access to larger, dynamic collections befitting of a 21st century library at a university in pursuit of Tier One research status.

Fundamentally, we emphasize accessibility over ownership. Using a combination of modern business models, we seek to provide seamless, on-demand access to materials through vendor and consortial agreements; pursue collaborative sharing and targeted per-use purchases of materials; and engage in established digital preservation initiatives.

Our approach to acquisitions is strategic, forward-thinking and rooted firmly in data-driven decision making. We evaluate emerging technologies for optimal discoverability of content in support of our users’ evolving needs. In addition, we are committed to keeping abreast of developments in publishing and emerging purchasing models.

A contemporary collections philosophy requires flexibility in a rapidly changing information and educational environment. To that end, we engage in regular review of current collections and fund allocations, in accordance with the university’s evolving curriculum and growth strategy.

In consideration of our finite physical space and the increasing availability of electronic resources, we will continue to convert current collections in traditional formats to electronic format, reducing duplication of content. In a process that is part art and part science, our professional librarians consider both quantitative and qualitative factors when making format decisions. This analysis includes discipline-specific considerations, recognizing there are some subjects where resources are most appropriate in print format for reasons both practical and pedagogical.

Collections Vision Statements

Embrace a fresh approach to collections to facilitate universal access to information

  • Emphasize getting information over owning information
  • Ensure that the mission of the university is the primary driver in collections decisions
  • Foster well-utilized, dynamic collections
  • Seek strategic partnerships to expand access options

Actively explore and leverage innovative technologies to provide the richest presentation of information

  • Position ourselves on the forefront of the shift from a print culture to a digital culture
  • Enable immediate, unfettered access to information
  • Optimize discoverability paths to be eminently intuitive and diverse

Take a leadership role to support scholarly teaching and learning

  • Be hyperaware of the rapidly changing scholarly information landscape
  • Proactively pursue new initiatives to advance research and scholarship
  • Expand access to unique tangible collections through digitization