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Begley Library Homepage: Policies


Begley Library embraces the responsibility of curating spaces, providing services and resources that support our communities equitably, and foster belonging. In keeping with SUNY’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion mission, Begley Library is committed to continually raising cultural awareness, sustaining transformation, and working to “champion initiatives that support individual expression.”

Mission Statement

Begley Library's role is fundamental to the educational mission of Schenectady County Community College. Primary to this role is the development, maintenance, and preservation of collections in varied formats representing diverse perspectives. Of vital importance is the provision of on- and off-campus access to resources and services in support of the educational objectives and research needs of College and community members. Through their work in developing critical thinking skills and information literacy, Begley Library faculty are committed to creating a stimulating environment conducive to independent thinking and life-long learning. The Library creatively responds with thoughtful study and consideration to emerging information technologies in order to provide high quality services to the College and community.

Collection Development Policy


The primary mission of Begley Library is to provide resources in support of the educational objectives of Schenectady County Community College. One of the principal means employed to achieve this end is the selection and acquisition of print, non-print and online materials. In developing the collection, the chief consideration will be given to those materials supporting the curriculum. Also, selected items which meet the general information needs of students and foster lifelong learning will be acquired. Faculty needing resources not included in Begley Library collections will be assisted in accessing the collections of other libraries.

Circulating Collection

The circulating collection is the largest and most comprehensive in the Library. It is composed of monographs which are available for circulation to students, faculty, staff, qualified community members and interlibrary loan. The subject scope of the collection reflects the curriculum and other needs of the institution. It is as comprehensive as funding allows.

Media Materials

Media materials are acquired to support the curriculum of the institution. Additional factors taken into account are the technical quality of the production, currency of the materials, and cost-effectiveness. Materials not used expressly in the classroom are available for circulation and interlibrary loan.

Online Collections

Online collections are selected as a result of collaboration among librarians with input, when relevant, from teaching faculty.  Selections may also be influenced by available consortial arrangements.  Selection criteria include usefulness for students, faculty and staff for course work and research; cost; technological capabilities and support; and amount of access provided to the campus.  Other guidelines for selection of online collections include authority and scope, comprehensiveness, interface and availability of instructional guidelines. Current online collections include subscription databases, ebooks, ejournals and ereference collections.  As new technologies emerge, they will be evaluated for inclusion.

Periodical Collection

Since periodical publications represent a continuing expense, titles are added selectively. They are evaluated according to scope, depth, relevance to the curriculum, current or expected demand, price, and availability of titles in electronic databases and other online formats.  Print backfiles are kept for varying lengths of time depending on the demand for and usefulness of back issues of each title.

Reference Collection

Reference resources, both print and electronic, are collected to serve the needs of students, faculty and staff. The subject scope of the collection reflects the curriculum and other needs of the institution.  Selection criteria for the reference collection include authority, academic level, scope, cost and format.

Special Collections

The Library maintains a small archival area where the special collections are housed. Materials related to the founding of the College and to the two historic buildings on the campus, Elston Hall (the former Hotel Van Curler) and the Center for Science and Technology (previously a General Electric facility and the site of early television broadcasts) are collected. These include correspondence and other documents as well as blueprints, photographs, negatives and newspaper clippings. Items such as the College's catalogs, student handbooks, yearbooks, and commencement and honors convocation programs are collected routinely along with other documents deemed to be relevant to the history of the institution.


In general, only one copy of any item is purchased. Duplicate materials received as gifts are added to the collection if warranted.


Gift items are accepted at the discretion of Begley staff. Materials are evaluated before being added to the collection. The Library reserves the right to dispose of gifts. Gifts are added to the collection based on the same criteria used for those that are purchased. A letter of acknowledgment will be sent to the donor, but no value appraisal will be made by the Library.

Withdrawing Materials

The collection is reviewed on an ongoing basis. Resources are evaluated according to their content, authority, scope, currency, condition, patron use, applicability to the curriculum and importance to the overall collection. As new editions are received, older ones are removed unless retention is warranted.

Intellectual Freedom

Begley Library supports the American Library Association's Library Bill of Rights.  In the development of the library's collection, librarians attempt to purchase materials and provide access to information which represent differing views. Censorship will not be exercised because of point of view or manner of expression.