Special Collections in College and University Libraries

Special collections librarians must balance the need for access and preservation against the costs of staffing, cataloging and processing, physical space, and archival storage for a variety of formats. Web technologies offer new ways of reaching users, but come with significant costs.This CLIP Note focuses on policy issues facing special collections in college and small university libraries. A total of 146 institutions responded to a survey on special collections practices and provided sample documents on specific aspects of special collections and archives practice such as collection development, acquisitions, cataloging and processing, reference, outreach, fundraising, and the development of web resources.