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Adler University Library Policies: Collection Development

Adler University Library's policies on: borrowing (including fines/fees, recalls & holds), eResources usage, interlibrary loan, course reserves, copyright compliance, donations/gifts

Adler University Library Collection Development Policy

The purpose of the Collection Development Policy is to aid librarians in selecting materials and communicating selection parameters to faculty, students, and staff of Adler University.  The primary acquisition goal for Adler University Libraries is the development of enduring scholarly collections allied to Adler University’s programs. 

Contact us

Harold & Birdie Mosak Library - Chicago
17 North Dearborn, 15th floor
Chicago, IL 60602
Phone: 312-662-4230

Adler University Library - Online

Adler University Learning Commons - Vancouver
520 Seymour Str., 3rd floor

Vancouver, BC

V6B 3J5

Phone: 236-521-2405

Library hours


Fall, Spring Summer I semesters (Central Time)
Monday 9am - 7pm 
Tuesday 9am - 3pm
Wednesday 9am - 7pm
Thursdays 9m - 7pm 
Friday 9am - 5pm
Saturday 12pm - 4pm 

Sunday  Library Closed

Summer II and breaks
Mon - Thurs 9am - 5pm (CT)
Fri - Sun - Library Closed

Online Campus

When Online Campus classes are in session
Mon - Fri 9am - 5pm (CT)
Other times by arrangement, email the Online Campus Librarian for an appointment.


Semester Hours (Pacific Time)
Monday 8:30 - 5:00
Tuesday 8:30 - 6:00
Wednesday 8:30 - 6:00
Thursday 8:30 - 6:00
Friday 8:30 - 5:00
Saturday 9:00 - 4:00
Sunday closed


Textbook Policy


In accordance with standard practice in U.S. academic libraries, the Adler University Library system does not add undergraduate-level textbooks to the collection, either as a purchase or when offered as a donation, especially textbooks that students are expected to purchase for use in a particular course.

It is the expectation that required textbooks assigned to students in a particular course are to be purchased by each student in the course.  An instructor may choose to temporarily place a personal copy of a textbook on Reserves for a specific course, to be returned to the instructor at the end of the term.

Sometimes the word "textbook" is used to mean any book included in a course of study.  For the purposes of collection development, however, academic libraries define what qualifies as a textbook more narrowly.  While scholarly studies, or works of literature, history, philosophy, and other disciplines may be required reading for a class, they are not considered to be textbooks.  The Libraries frequently purchase academic texts that are required for a course when they fall within the scope of the collection.  

This textbook purchase policy restriction only applies to works that meet the definition of textbooks outlined below.

For this policy, a textbook is defined as "an edition of a book specifically intended for the use of students who are enrolled in a course of study or preparing for an examination on a subject or in an academic discipline, as distinct from the trade edition of the same title, sometimes published in conjunction with a workbook, lab manual, and/or teacher's manual."  Reitz, J. M. (2007). ODLIS: Online dictionary of library and information science. Westport, Conn.: Libraries Unlimited.    

Textbooks are by design overviews or digests of original works, meant to introduce students to a subject or continue basic instruction at the intermediate level.  They often contain study questions, discussion topics, practice exams, and/or exercises at the end of each chapter. Textbooks are designed to fit with a standard teaching cycle and commonly reissued every year or two in order to update information in previous editions.
Textbook purchase poses challenges to Library collection scope, resource allocation, and copyright compliance in the following ways:

  • Their ongoing academic value is questionable, placing them outside the parameters of the Library collection policy;
  • Their high cost and frequent revisions would divert funds from more substantial materials suited to a scholarly collection;
  • They increasingly require the purchase and use of a single-user digital access code to access all of the textbook's content.
  • The systematic purchase of required textbooks gives the appearance of a deliberate violation of copyright law.

Importantly, one of the four factors that Adler University Libraries must address in complying with United States Copyright Law’s “Fair Use” provisions is the potential effect that our actions will have on the market or potential market for the original work.  Similarly, Canadian “Fair Dealing” requires that educational institutions consider “the effect of the copying on the work, including whether the copy will compete with the commercial market of the original work.”  
We would therefore be out of compliance with copyright law by purchasing textbook for reserves to substitute for students buying the book.    
The most common exceptions to this policy are those graduate-level textbooks which have earned the reputations of classics in their areas, those that cover a new or emerging discipline, or those which are the only source of information on a particular topic.  Other exceptions are considered on a case-by-case basis, depending upon the rationale provided by the faculty member and the availability of funds.


Personal Copies on Reserves

A faculty member may choose to place a personal or department copy of a textbook on Library Reserves for the semester. The textbook will be returned to the faculty member at the conclusion of the course.

Uploads to LMS
Some works are covered by Adler University’s Copyright Clearance Center license or the Fair Use provision of copyright law.  Librarians are available to assist with verifying or obtaining any copyright clearance needed to place a limited amount of text online through LMS, the Learning Management System.

Links to electronic resources (articles & books)
Adler University provides an increasing volume of academic materials in full-text online format.  Faculty are able to build links to these resources into a syllabus or into the LMS (Learning Management System). Librarians are available to assist faculty in locating appropriate materials.  To use persistent links , please see
the library guide below: