Collection Development Policy

Approved by the Library Committee of the Hillsdale College Faculty November 30, 2022

Mossey Library Mission Statement

Mossey Library supports the mission of Hillsdale College by providing information resources to support the learning and scholarship of its students, faculty, and staff, and by providing an environment suitable to deep reading and intellectual discovery. The Library’s mission includes the preservation of and access to knowledge in all formats to support the curriculum, and the development of archival and special collections that record the history of the College and preserve the legacy of its founding principles.


It is the policy of Mossey Library to develop the collections in the manner that most fully and appropriately supports the mission of Hillsdale College. The primary goal of the Mossey Library collections is to support the College’s curriculum. Additional goals include support of the research and scholarship of the College community, the preservation of the College’s history, and the advancement of scholarship in areas central to the College’s mission. The development and preservation of printed materials remains a focus of both regular and archival activity, but appropriate development of electronic holdings is an acknowledged and accepted requirement for the support of modern learning and research.

The Library does not restrict acquisitions to a particular format or language, and will develop collections at a level appropriate to the needs at any given time in any given area. Regular assessment of collections to support the needs of the College community will be conducted, both by librarians using formal assessment tools, and by faculty as new areas of research and instruction are added in their areas.


The librarians are expected to spend time each week examining relevant and current literature to select material that supports mission of the College. Important new books and other publications in areas taught at the College will be acquired in the most appropriate format for the expected use and retention. Faculty in all disciplines are encouraged to recommend additional material to complete and maintain current holdings in their respective areas, and the Library will make every attempt to fulfill those requests. Recommendations for additional acquisitions are accepted from all members of the College community, but only materials that are deemed appropriate and needed for use by Hillsdale College faculty, staff, and students will be acquired. Self-published books will be acquired only when requested by College faculty.

Special Collections

The Library maintains a number of collections of rare books, papers, and artifacts that further support the curriculum. These collections are acquired both as gifts and as purchases, and may be developed on a continuing basis as appropriate. The primary focus of these collections is the origin and culture of our nation’s Western heritage.


The Library is the custodian of the College’s archives and historical records. As a part of the routine business life of the College, the Library will acquire all documents and artifacts deemed worthy of permanent retention. The Library will also pursue acquisition of historical documents and artifacts available through donation or purchase from individuals, institutions, and third-party sellers. Books authored or edited, and recordings professionally released, by full-time faculty, staff, and students during their active affiliation with the College, and by emeritus faculty, will be acquired.

Institutional Repository

The Hillsdale College Research Repository, the institutional repository managed by the library, collects the work of full-time and emeritus faculty of the college, as well as theses, dissertations, honors papers, published materials, and conference presentations and posters created by Hillsdale College students while enrolled.


Gifts will only be added to the collections if they meet the criteria stated elsewhere in this policy.


The Library will assess coverage of specific topics and disciplines as needed to support the curriculum.


While materials of continued relevance or historical interest will be kept in the circulating collection, materials that are no longer relevant, accurate, or complete, and that are not expected to hold research value for the Hillsdale College community, will be removed, or weeded, from the collection on an occasional basis. Comprehensive collections in some areas may be needed, but the collection as a whole will be maintained at a level that supports the liberal arts curriculum rather than doctoral-level research.

Policy Revision

Any revisions to this policy will require the approval of the Faculty Library Committee.

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