Collection Development Policy




The core of a library is its collections—Library personnel acquire and manage them, and teach users how best to access and use them. Collection development is the planned purchase of materials in various formats to match the instructional and research needs of the college within its current fiscal environment and resource sharing opportunities.

The processes of collection development include: selection and deselection of current and retrospective materials; processing of in-kind gifts; planning of coherent strategies for continuing acquisitions; input into preservation decisions, evaluation of collections to ascertain their value to users; and developing criteria for relocating library materials to off-site storage.

Library Mission

The NYSID Library supports the curriculum, research, and life-long learning activities of our students, faculty, alumni and affiliated working professionals, with deep and broad print and electronic collections, a wide range of instructional programs and services, and creative uses of library facilities and technologies.

Mission Fulfillment

The Library accomplishes its mission through the following:

  • Serving as a center for learning by providing a place for students and faculty to actively engage in study and research;
  • Selecting, acquiring, organizing, preserving, and providing access to scholarly information supporting the college’s curriculum;
  • Assisting and instructing students and faculty in finding and using scholarly information available at the college and elsewhere;
  • Using technology to extend access to library resources and services;
  • Collaborating within and outside the college to enhance library collections and services;
  • Inspiring lifelong learning.

The Library offers students, faculty, staff, and members of its consortium access to a diverse collection of print and non-print resources. Other users, including alumni, may join the Friends of the Library program to obtain reader privileges. NYSID’s Collection Development Policy ranks potential acquisitions using a ranking system adapted from Research Libraries Group’s RLG Conspectus, (available on the Library of Congress website).with rankings ranging from the minimal level to the level of advanced study.

The library acquires, organizes and makes available materials primarily in the areas of interior design, architecture, the decorative arts, design theory, and the visual and applied arts, and will continue to develop and maintain a core collection of primary and secondary materials in related liberal arts disciplines.

In accordance with the Library’s mission, the collection is a mixture of print, audiovisual collections, electronic and web access, and reliance on non-NYSID resources available through the NYU Consortium and other area libraries.

Fulfillment of the mission depends upon funds, expertise, physical space, and technology available.

Specific Library objectives include the development of increased electronic resources to support the current and future educational and research needs of faculty, staff and students.

Library Users

The NYSID Library’s primary users are the college’s students, faculty, staff, and members of the consortium.

The collection serves the following ten academic programs at NYSID:

BID          Basic Interior Design certificate [onsite and online]

AAS         Associate in Applied Science in Interior Design

BFA         Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design

MFA-1     Professional-level Master of Fine Arts in Interior Design

MFA-2     Post-Professional Master of Fine Arts in Interior Design

MPS-H    Master of Professional Studies in Healthcare Interior Design

MPS-L     Master of Professional Studies in Interior Lighting Design

MPS-S     Master of Professional Studies in Sustainable Interior Environments

ICPS        Institute for Continuing and Professional Studies

Intellectual Freedom

The NYSID Library affirms the following policies on collection development as stated in the American Library Association Library Bill of Rights:

  1. Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
  2. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.


Subject Areas and Collection Strengths

The NYSID Library primarily collects within subject areas that support the instructional and research activities of the NYSID community. As a single subject degree-granting institution, the Library’s major collection strength is Interior Design and its related applied arts, with a secondary collecting strength in Architecture. The Library relies on the consortium libraries to supplement its basic holdings in fine art and the humanities.

Levels of Collecting Defined

The following definitions are adapted from the Research Library Group’s RLG Conspectus, available on the Library of Congress website. They are intended to provide a guideline for the level of resources the library strives to provide for different subject areas as they relate to the NYSID curriculum, in terms of both physical collections and access to electronic resources.

  1. Out-of-Scope: The Library does not collect in this area.
  2. Minimal Level: A subject area in which few selections are made beyond very basic works.
  3. Basic Information Level: A collection of up-to-date general materials that serve to introduce and define a subject and to indicate the varieties of information available elsewhere. It may include dictionaries, encyclopedias, selected editions of important works, historical surveys, bibliographies, handbooks, a few major periodicals, in the minimum number that will serve the purpose. A basic information collection is not sufficiently intensive to support any courses of independent study in the subject area involved
  4. Instructional Support Level: A collection that in a college is adequate to support undergraduate and most graduate instruction, or sustained independent study; that is, adequate to maintain knowledge of a subject required for limited or generalized purposes, of less than research intensity. It includes a wide range of basic monographs, collections of works of more important writers, selections from the works of secondary writers, a selection of representative journals, and reference tools and fundamental bibliographical resources pertaining to the subject.
  5. Advanced Study/Research Level: A collection that includes the major published source materials required for dissertations and independent research, including materials containing research reporting, case studies, new findings, and other information useful to researchers. It is intended to include important reference works and a wide selection of specialized monographs, as well as major journals, indexing, and abstracting services in the field. Older material is retained for historical research.
  6. Comprehensive Level: A collection which, so far as is reasonably possible, includes all significant works of recorded knowledge (publications, manuscripts, and other forms), in all applicable languages, for a necessarily defined and limited field. This level of collecting intensity is one that maintains a “special collection.” The aim, if not achievement, is exhaustiveness. Older material is retained for historical research.

Interior Design, Core Areas Collected                              

Contract Design: 4

Contract design process, methodology and case studies for commercial project types such as workplace, retail, hospitality, museums, restaurants, schools, airports, hospitals, and mixed-use facilities.         

Healthcare Design 4

Healthcare design process, methodology and case studies for healthcare environments, including evidence-based design, sustainable design, history and theory of healthcare design, environmental and behavioral studies, and applied design.

Interior Design, History of:  3/4

History of interior design in furniture, interiors and architecture, from the ancient world to the present, with an emphasis on major forms and period styles.

Lighting Design:  4

Lighting design process, methodology and case studies in interior lighting design relating to residential, commercial, and institutional environments, history and theory of lighting design, principles of sustainability as they relate to the discipline, natural and artificial lighting and control systems, integrated systems design, as well as financial analysis, code compliance, and project maintenance.

Residential Design:  4

Residential design process, methodology and case studies for private residences and multi-unit dwellings, including iconic houses of the twentieth century.

Sustainable/Green Design:  4

Sustainable/green design process, methodology and case studies relating to sustainable design in residential and commercial interior environments, including research methods, integrated design development methodologies, sustainable project management practices, the history and theory of sustainability, principles of sustainable materials, integrated environmental systems design, along with green textiles, furnishings, and decorative elements.

Architecture, General:  2/3

Emphasis is on instructional needs, focusing on compendiums and monographs featuring the works of major architects and architectural firms, as well as significant landmarks of New York City. The Library’s architecture collection is supplemented by the very strong holdings within the consortium, particularly the Cooper Union Library.

Architecture, History of: 2/3

A general overview of architectural history, with an emphasis on work from the18th century to the present, focusing on major movements and styles, along with New York City-centric topics.

Art and Antiques Appraisal:  1

Generally out of scope, but evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Art and Culture/Society:   2

Selected titles emphasizing the influence of specific art and cultural movements on interior design and architecture.

Art History/Fine Arts:   2

Art history compendiums, and major monographs for instructional purposes. Fine arts emphasis is both art historical and related to the designer’s use and placement of fine art in interiors.

Building Codes and Standards:  2

Emphasis is placed on current architectural, graphic, and space planning standards that support the needs of the interior design curriculum. Older materials are evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Color Theory:  2/3

Collection directly supports the design curriculum. Emphasis is on academic discussions of color for interiors and the work of major color theorists.

Costume Design:  1

Generally out of scope, but evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Decorative Arts:  3/4

History of decorative arts with a concentration on furniture, carpet, and textiles. Other decorative arts subjects are collected in support of the curriculum on a case-by-case basis.

Design Representation and Communication

Hand and Digital Drawing/Technical Drawing/Graphic Communication/3-D Animation:   3/4

Photography 2

Emphasis is on photography for the interior designer and photo documentation of the interior environment.

Design Theory:  3

Emphasis is on the relationships between theoretical, pragmatic, historical, and cultural considerations in architecture and interior design.

Environmental and Behavior Research:  2/3

Design process, evidence-based design, methodology, and case studies relating to the application of physical, biological and social science in the design of interiors and architecture.

Exhibition Design:   2

Design of exhibition spaces, public event spaces, and trade shows.

Furniture Design: 2

Aesthetic and functional issues related to the creation of custom, freestanding furniture, including the uses of both hard and soft goods, anthropometric and ergonomic considerations, sustainability, and the use of the metric system.

Graphic Design:   2

Graphic design and wayfinding relevant to interior design and the built environment.

Historic Preservation:   2

General overview of the preservation movement in the United States, with a particular focus on New York City landmarked interiors and public spaces.

Humanities, General:  1

Generally out of scope, with the exception of limited titles directly relating to instructional needs such as English composition, cultural anthropology, math, and languages, or other titles providing social or historic context for the interior design curriculum such as arts, culture, and society. The Library’s humanities collection is supplemented by the very strong holdings within the consortium, particularly NYU’s Bobst Library.

Industrial/Product Design:  1/2

Materials and fabrication processes related to the design of mass-produced objects.

Landscape Architecture and Design:  2/3

Concepts, principles, and methods of landscape design from both a contemporary and historical perspective, with a special focus on the relationship between landscape and the interior and exterior architecture, the meaning of gardens in society, and philosophical and spiritual concepts in landscape design.

Set Design:  1/2

Concepts, principles, and methods of scenic design from both a current and historical perspective.

Universal Design/Barrier-Free Design:   2/3

Design process, methodology and case studies relating to accessible human-centered design in housing, commercial and public facilities, and outdoor environments.

Other Collecting Criteria

1.    Languages

The main language of the collection is English. Foreign language titles with exceptional visual images will also be considered.

2.    Geographical Areas

All geographic areas with emphasis on North America and Western Europe.

3.    Periods and Styles

Materials representing all time periods and styles are collected; nineteenth, twentieth and -twenty-first century designers and movements are emphasized.

Selection Responsibility

The development and maintenance of the Library’s collection is the responsibility of the Director of the Library and the Librarian. Faculty, students and staff are welcome to suggest material for purchase by email or the Library’s Online Suggestion Box. All requests will be reviewed to determine appropriateness, as outlined by the Collection Development Policy. While the Library will solicit selections from the faculty in their respective areas of expertise, it is the faculty’s responsibility to monitor their professional literature and to inform the Library of assigned textbooks and other materials useful for course requirements as well as materials for students’ research needs.

Individuals making recommendations will be contacted when clarification is needed, when material does not seem to conform with the collection development policy, if an equivalent resource is already available, or if the materials can be obtained through another area library.

Selection Guidelines

The Library’s mission statement will provide the framework for selection of all formats of resources to be added to the collection. Fulfillment of goals pertaining to the academic curriculum and the quality of the content are first considered in making a selection. In addition, the following are also considered: strength of current holdings in a particular area, lasting value of content, appropriateness of level, suitability of format, authority of author, reputation of publisher, circulation history of related materials, and cost.

The majority of the selections will be current publications. Because of the difficulty and expense of obtaining out-of-print and reprinted materials, it is important to expend funds and effort in the acquisition of valuable current publications of long-term worth, thus preventing a future need for retrospective buying. However, the Library may perform retrospective purchases of library materials to fill existing collection gaps, if the current budget allows.

All historical periods and world geographical locations will be considered for acquisition.

Specialized Acquisitions Considerations

Gift Materials

Gifts will be accepted in adherence to the Library’s collection development criteria and Book Donation Policy.

Gift materials are subject to the same criteria for addition to the collection as purchased materials. The NYSID Library reserves the right to accept or reject gifts, with or without restricting conditions, and the right to dispose of unwanted gift materials.

A Book Donation Form should be completed by the donor and returned to the
Library for the Library’s records.

  • For tax purposes, the NYSID Library will provide a gift-in-kind acknowledgement letter with an item count of books donated. Neither the college nor the Library can assign a dollar value. Any appraisal of the items donated is the responsibility of the donor.
  • Monetary donations are welcomed.

Typically, the following materials are excluded from consideration:

  • Any books in poor physical condition, including: brittle paper; worn or broken bindings; missing or ripped pages; pen, highlighter or pencil marked pages; damage from water, mold, mildew or insects; or with a musty odor
  • Textbooks and handbooks
  • Periodicals, magazines, newspapers or journals
  • Scattered or single volumes of a multi-volume set
  • Pamphlets
  • Non-print materials: videotapes, DVDs, CDs or tape cassettes
  • Encyclopedias and dictionaries

Reserve Materials

Reserve materials are available for a 2-hour loan period. All reserve materials are based on the college’s Course Profile documents. Any updates to required reserve texts (including new editions) must be approved by the Dean of the college. Budget permitting, the Library strives to maintain one additional non-circulating copy of all required reserve texts, and an e-copy when available. Faculty may also request supplemental (non-required) reserve materials that support their syllabi, however certain materials that are in high demand across the curriculum may be designated for “Library Use Only” (non-circulating) rather than reserve.

Electronic Materials

Electronic resources are collected to support the basic instructional, research, and information needs of the college. These include, but are not limited to, electronic serials or collections of serials; online bibliographic databases; electronic reference materials; electronic monographs or collections of monographs. Traditional selection criteria apply to electronic resources. However, due to the unique nature of electronic resources, special criteria need also be applied (see section IV on Polices by Type and Format of Materials).


Types of Materials Collected

A. Monographs (books on a single specialized subject or aspect of it)

Monographs are acquired with first priority given to supporting the curriculum and based on availability of funds. More books are acquired in print format, but the Library also purchases electronic books when appropriate. The most readily available format for monographs is acquired.

B. Textbooks

  • Required textbooks are purchased selectively, based on the college’s Course Profile documents. All faculty requests for modifications to existing required texts (including new editions) must be approved by the Dean. When a required textbook is superseded by a new edition, the Library will retain only one copy of the previous edition. The Library strives to maintain two print copies of all required textbooks: one for course reserves, and one copy that is non-circulating “Library Use Only.” Budget permitting, e-copies of required texts are purchased whenever possible.
  • The Library purchases additional textbooks on an as-needed basis, including texts listed as “suggested” on the college’s Course Profile documents, and supplemental (non-required) texts requested by faculty that support their course syllabi.  Budget permitting, e-copies of both suggested and supplemental texts are purchased whenever possible.

C. Serials (such as journals and magazines)

The Library is committed to supporting the curriculum by acquiring the most relevant holdings for serial titles when affordable. Serials provide information not always available in books and serve to keep the collection up-to-date. Since serial subscriptions represent a significant and continuing expense, recommendations for new titles are carefully scrutinized. Subscriptions are evaluated on the basis of their relevance to the collection, availability of indexing, language of publication, quality of reproductions, and price.  Site-wide access to electronic journals or databases is sought whenever possible.

D. MFA-2 Thesis Books

MFA-2 Thesis Books are acquired annually in hard copy format by the Library and are retained permanently. Currently, MFA-2 students are encouraged to submit electronic copies of their theses documents to the Library for the college’s digital repository. When the policies and procedures for the digital archives are in place, the Library may expand its collection scope of student work.

E. Contract III Project Books

Contract III project books are acquired annually in hard copy format by the Library and are retained for a period of up to two years before being updated with more recent submissions. Older books are returned to the Program Director. When the policies and procedures for the college’s digital repository are established, electronic copies of the project books may be kept permanently.

F. Audio-Visual Materials

The Library maintains a small collection of DVD and CD-ROM titles that support the teaching curriculum, but no longer actively collects in this format. The Library will investigate the possibility of migrating this content to the college’s online digital repository.

Multiple Copies

Only one copy of an edition and format of a title is normally acquired. When a required textbook is superseded by a new edition, the Library will retain only one copy of the previous edition. Requests for the purchase of multiple copies and formats are reviewed on a case-by-case basis with preference given to duplicate copies and electronic formats of required textbooks or monographs that are heavily used in the curriculum.

Electronic Formats

Electronic products include, but are not limited to, the following: online full-text databases, e-books, e-journals, compact discs, DVDs, and websites of specific values and usefulness to NYSID Library users.

The NYSID Library subscribes to electronic resources in support of the educational needs of students, faculty and staff of the college.

Due to the high and recurring subscription fees of electronic resources, the Library is charged with making cost-effective and balanced purchase decisions based on institutional needs. At the same time, a major goal of acquiring electronic resources is the provision of access both on and off campus in the most affordable manner possible.

Selection Parameters for Electronic Resources

Content is the primary consideration for purchase of electronic resources, as it is for other Library resources. Additional criteria for electronic resources include access, functionality/usability, interoperability, stability, archiving, documentation, customer support, and format appropriateness for the content. All electronic resources acquired by the Library must be accessible in the Library and, except when technically or contractually prohibited, also be remotely accessible through the Library’s website or online catalog.

Access/Technical Preferences

  • Available via the World Wide Web 24/7
  • IP address recognition, no password required
  • Unlimited simultaneous users preferable to single or limited simultaneous users
  • Platform-unknown; not pre-determined
  • Browser- unknown; not pre-determined
  • No special additional software required (third party software)
  • Administrative module available
  • Customization of interface possible
  • Usage statistics available, downloadable in multiple standard formats
  • Accurate and up-to-date holdings information, downloadable in multiple standard formats
  • Open URL capable

Vendor Support Preferences

  • Reliability and stability established
  • Continued product support through updates and/or new versions
  • Customer support: responsive, timely
  • Notification of any changes: timely
  • Documentation: clear and comprehensive
  • Trial period available

Cost and Support Guidelines

  • Scope and usefulness of the content to the NYSID user community justifies the cost of the resource
  • The cost of the resource is sustainable by the electronic resources budget for the foreseeable future.
  • Maintenance support is available at the NYSID Library, IT Department, or outside maintenance contracts.


The Library’s budget is administered by the Director of the Library. The Library’s annual budget supports the purchase of all formats designated in the collection development policy. The budget supports expenditures for the following: approval plans, firm orders, and continuing resources to the extent that funding is available, with first consideration given to continuing obligations (i.e., recurring expenses). The budget for collection development is allocated according to available funds and established institutional priorities. The Library staff is responsible for placing all orders for library materials, recording the receipt of materials, and processing invoices.


Deselection or Weeding

Weeding, deselection, retention, and replacement are all important aspects of collection maintenance and evaluation. The Library periodically reviews the collection to identify outdated or damaged materials. Whenever possible, both faculty and library staff participate in the weeding process to ensure that significant publications are not discarded.

General Weeding Criteria

  • Fulfillment of academic goals and the quality of the content
  • Strength of current holdings in a particular area
  • Lasting value of content
  • Circulation history or related usage statistics
  • Availability elsewhere
  • Number of duplicate copies
  • Age and/or condition
  • Currency and timeliness
  • Availability of newer edition or better title
  • Suitability or appropriateness (e.g. if it is out of collection scope)
  • Unsolicited/unwanted gifts
  • Fragility/need for special preservation

Preservation and Conservation

Preservation is the activity to prevent, eliminate, or retard deterioration of library materials, as well as to improve their condition or to change their format as necessary in order to preserve the intellectual content. The Library endeavors to protect the physical integrity of materials through conservation measures, such as regulating temperature and humidity, dust control, and reformatting if possible.


Basic book repair will be conducted by the Library’s staff whenever feasible. Books requiring more complicated/time intensive repairs will be outsourced to a bindery, weeded or replaced as deemed appropriate.


Materials in various formats that are missing, lost, or withdrawn, are not automatically replaced. Potential replacements are evaluated using the same criteria for selection as regularly purchased items. Depending on the availability of funds, heavily used materials, determined to be necessary for teaching and research, will be replaced as quickly as possible, if the materials are available.


Summer Semester

June 10 – August 1*

Monday 9 a.m.-8 p.m.
Tuesday 9 a.m.-8 p.m.
Wednesday 9 a.m.-8 p.m.
Thursday 9 a.m.-8 p.m.
Friday 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed


*Also closed: June 19, July 4, 5, 12, 19, and 26

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