Collection Development

4.1 Purpose and Goals

The Collection Development policy provides guidelines for the formation and growth of the collections that the Danville Public Library will maintain in support of the mission to “engage the community through access to free resources and services that enable creative thinking and lifelong learning.”

The Library is responsible for providing a wide range of materials for users of all ages, backgrounds, and opinions. The Library Bill of Rights, The Freedom to Read, and the Freedom to View adopted by the American Library Association are foundational to the development of the collections. As a forum for information and ideas, the library’s commitment is to diversity and a range of attitudes. Current usefulness is the determining factor in how long material is kept, and no extraordinary effort is made to preserve or archive materials in the collection except where specifically noted. 

4.2 Selection of Materials

Selection Criteria

  • The general criteria for selecting library materials are listed below. An item does not need to meet all the following requirements to be deemed acceptable.
  • Importance and accuracy of subject matter
  • Relation to existing collection
  • Represent a wide range of point of views
  • Suitability of physical format
  • Patron demand based on requests and usage statistics
  • Contemporary significance
  • The reputation of the author, illustrator, producer, performer

Criteria for the evaluation of children’s books and other materials for children include literary merit, quality of art and illustrations, and significant literary awards nominees and winners.

Responsibility for Selection

Designated staff are assigned responsibility for specific areas of the collection, under the overall direction of the Division Director of Libraries. The responsibility for selection ultimately rests with the Division Director of Libraries.

Selection Tools

The following are resources that the Library selectors use to find new titles for purchase. These tools offer information about the title and some also include reviews.

  • Materials vendor provided reviews (Ingram - iPage, Midwest Tape)
  • Well established bestseller Lists (New York Times, Amazon, Publishers Weekly)
  • The purchasing habits of other public libraries and booksellers (Ingram - iPage)
  • Reading enthusiast sites (Goodreads, LibraryThing)
  • Professional journals and magazines (Library Journal, BookPage)
  • Popular culture (TV shows, social media)

Patron Requests

The Danville Public Library welcomes the input of members of the community and the library staff regarding purchasing specific titles for the library’s collection. Specific suggestions may be submitted through a form found on the library website. The appropriate staff member will evaluate the request. The decision to add requested items to the collection will be based on the Selection Criteria, Selection Tools, and availability.

4.3 Special Collections

Deposit Collection

A Deposit Collection is a collection of library materials placed at non-library sites for the use of residents or users of a designated site. The items in the collection consist of appropriate format and reading level and are intended to meet the reading enjoyment need. The sites may include senior centers, assisted living facilities, schools, and Parks and Recreation centers. Items in the collection do not need to be checked out for use by residents of the facility. However, every attempt will be made by the facility organizers to keep the materials organized and from becoming missing.


A collection of titles are made available in an electronic format, to be accessed Online. The eBooks and eAudiobooks offered by the Library are tied to a vendor platform and are subjected to external collection development policies and procedures. Some titles are made available through a consortium of libraries or a service, and may not necessarily represent the selections of the Danville Public Library. Each eBook platform is also subjected to individual circulation policies and can change at any time.

Genealogy & Local History

The items in this collection are primarily used for researching family and local history and are not to be removed from the Genealogy Room. Some items are kept for archival purposes.

Law Library

The majority of the Law Section’s resources are drawn from Online legal databases. The print version of the text will be purchased sparingly and is based on the uniqueness or ease of use. 

4.4 Collections Maintenance (Replacement and Discarding)

Library staff will make every effort to keep the collection in order and up to date. Shelving and shelf reading will take place on a consistent basis.

Library staff assigned to collection maintenance will regularly review the items in the collection based on a plan to ensure that they are still meeting the selection criteria. Materials that are worn, obsolete, unused, or no longer needed duplicates are systematically removed from the collection. The Library staff responsible regularly assess the need to replace worn or lost items.

The Library has the right to discard any material determined to be unsuitable for the collection. Discarded Library materials are offered to the Friends of the Library to be sold for fundraising purposes, given away, or discarded.

4.5 Monetary Gifts and Donations

Community members and organizations are welcome to donate funds for the purchase of items for the collection. The selection of the items that are purchased using donated funds is the responsibility of Library staff assigned to that particular collection.

The Library’s acceptance of a donated item does not constitute an agreement to add it to the collection.

Donations to the Library become the property of The Friends of the Danville Public Library. The Friends of the Library sort through all donated materials. Some items may be sold, given away, or discarded. 

4.6 Requests for Reconsideration of Materials

A patron wishing to express concern about materials already in the collection will be invited to voice their concerns with an appropriate staff member. Should a patron still be unsatisfied, they may formally request that the Library reconsider its classification or possession of an item by submitting a Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials Form (see Appendix 7.5.6) to the Division Director of Libraries.

If a request for reconsideration is submitted, the Director will promptly review the item in question, together with any available reviews of the material, and will render a resolution as to appropriate action. The Director will convey this decision to the requesting party in writing.