Collection Development Criteria

Collection Development Policies

The San Anselmo Library uses these policies in the decision making process for all materials entered into our library collection.

Criteria for Materials Selection

The San Anselmo Public Library uses judgment, experience, and expertise in the application of the following Criteria for Materials Selection. Decisions are made as objectively as possible.

All materials, whether purchased or donated, are considered in terms of the following criteria:
  • Popular interest
  • Critical assessments in a variety of professional journals and attention in media
  • Contemporary significance or permanent value
  • Current, accurate, and authentic
  • Representation of diverse points of view
  • Relationship to existing materials in collection
  • Readability or ability to sustain interest
  • Appropriateness of subject to the age of the intended audience
  • Reputation of the author, publisher, producer, or illustrator
  • Creative, literary, or technical quality
  • Format and ease of use
  • Circulation as monitored through the Library's automated system
  • Cost and availability
  • Relationship to materials in other area libraries
  • Local emphasis

Librarians use a variety of tools to aid in the selection of materials, including: professional review journals, popular print and broadcast media, bookstores, publishers' catalogs, and patron and staff recommendations. The following publications are consulted in the selection of materials, but selection is not limited to these: Booklist, Hornbook, Library Journal, Kirkus, New York Times Book Review, San Francisco Chronicle Book Review, and School Library Journal.

Materials by Local Authors

Every attempt is made to acquire titles by local San Anselmo and Marin authors that have been issued by mainstream publishers. Self-published titles by local authors are not added to the library's collection unless there is a compelling reason to do so, such as valuable local content or local interest. Materials by self-published local authors may be added to our Local Author Collection, which can be found in the Historical Museum. If you would like the librarians to consider your work, please submit a Local Author Submission Form to the Reference Desk.

Librarians follow the criteria below when considering items for the Local Author Collection:
  • The author or illustrator is a resident or former resident of San Anselmo or Marin County
  • The item meets basic criteria of our Collection Development Policy
  • The library may add donated items to the Local Author Collection but does not purchase titles for the Local Author Collection. Please note: the library cannot accept donations of ebooks or eaudiobooks.

Suggestions for Purchase

The San Anselmo Public Library welcomes input from the community concerning the literary collection. A suggestion for purchase procedure enables San Anselmo Public Library patrons to request particular items or subjects for purchase. All suggestions for purchase are subject to the same selection criteria as other materials and are not automatically added to the collection. You may complete a Suggestion for Purchase form at the Reference Desk or online through our catalog (note: you will have to sign in with your library card number and password).

Selection policies and Local Author submission form