The Swisher Library seeks to acquire resources that support the university’s teaching, research, and public missions, in alignment with the Library’s collection development philosophy.
In spring 2020, when the campus closed and classes moved online, the university community lost access to the Library’s extensive physical collections, along with print books through interlibrary loan. Under those circumstances, the Library instituted an e-preferred book acquisition policy to enable teaching and research to continue. Although access to print collections is restored, many students, faculty, and staff continue to study and prefer access to electronic resources. The Library is therefore instituting an e-preferred book acquisition policy as a part of our standard acquisitions policy.
The e-book marketplace continues to evolve and present an increasing number of publishers, platforms, pricing, content, and access models. The following principles and criteria guide the library's acquisition of e-books:
Access and discoverability
• E-books provide simultaneous access by unlimited number of users.
• E-books are accessible to authorized Library users, walk-in users, and via scholarly and resource sharing.
• E-books are indexed in major databases and discovery tools.
• Vendors can provide the Library with quality catalog records in a timely and accurate manner to facilitate discoverability of content.
Function and accessibility
• E-book platforms supports IP authentication (including the right to provide remote access to authorized users) or single sign-on via CAS authentication.
• E-book platforms support screen-readers and other assistive technologies so that the Library can comply with legal standards and university policies.
• Content is accessible across a variety of devices (mobile-responsive).
• Users can navigate cleanly among chapters and easily move between endnotes/footnotes/bibliography and main text.
Ownership and cost
• E-books should be purchased in perpetuity and not leased if possible.
• E-books should not be duplicated across multiple online platforms.
• Providers allow for perpetual access rights including the ability to locally host content.
• E-book costs are aligned with the average print monograph cost within that discipline.
• Providers can provide usage statistics on a regular basis.
• Print is specifically requested by a member of the Jacksonville University community for curricular or research purposes.
• An institutional license is unavailable for an electronic format.
• There is a delay between the print publication and the electronic edition.
• E-book is only available to lease, i.e. no perpetual access.
• The platform does not meet library function and accessibility as noted in the policy.
• The print has better quality images, graphs, charts, or other important visual content.
• The Library has the consortia responsibility to acquire a print copy.
• Jacksonville University faculty-authored books are not subject to this policy.