The Library Acquisitions Department licenses and purchases electronic resources, books, journals, video, and other information resources for the collection. The department is responsible for coordinating collection development, ordering and receiving materials, licensing and managing electronic resources.

Collection Development

Need a library assessment for a new program or for an accreditation? Please contact us at

Subscription Drop Information


General Questions: Alfredo Pinto, Assistant Director, Collections Strategist, 512-408-3726

Accreditation & New Program Assessments: Arlene Salazar, Collections Librarian, 512-245-3844

Book & Media Orders: Arlene Salazar, Collections Librarian, 512-245-3844

E-Resource Problems: Please use the online resource problem form.

Journal & Database Orders: Stephanie Larrison, Continuing Resources Librarian, 512-408-3461


Frequently Asked Questions

  • Submit a request in the Order Request System.

    The University Libraries buy materials and resources that will support curriculum and research needs. What gets purchased is a combination of ongoing subscriptions, demand-driven purchases, approval plans (automatic shipments based on preset profiles), Collections Team selections, and requests from TXST faculty, students, and staff.

  • We cannot purchase every resource, so we value your feedback in helping us prioritize purchases and subscriptions. Faculty who would like a trial may contact their college liaison or the Collections Team for a trial.

  • November 15: Target date for encumbrance/expenditure of 1/3 of available funds.

    Mid-February: Subscription review begins.

    March 30: Deadline for subscription cancellations

    May: Proposed subscription drop is distributed.

    June 15: Target date for completing encumbrance/expenditure of allocations

    July - August: Only limited ordering at the end of fiscal year.

  • The University Libraries' collection budget is divided into three major areas: Continuing resources, faculty/staff/student requests, and library initiatives. The majority of the budget is spent on continuing resources, which includes subscriptions to journals and databases. The library initiatives portion of the budget supports the Wittliff Collections, purchase-on-demand programs, captioning of library materials,and strategic purchases.


  • The Archives and Research Center  (ARC) will preserve library collections while supporting the growth of the Alkek Library and Texas State University. The decision to house a title at the ARC is a commitment to long-term retention and preservation.

    All disciplines, subjects, and formats of library material may be considered for transfer to the ARC. Selection will be an ongoing process, with some materials selected for transfer each year. The overriding principle in selecting material for the ARC are use and value to current curriculum and research needs of the Texas State University community.

    General Criteria

    1. User demand for the material, generally indicated by circulation statistics.
    2. Number of copies needed.
    3. User interest and need for superseded or revised texts.
    4. Value of variant editions.
    5. Level of interest in current or retrospective materials.
    6. Artifactual value of the material.
    7. Reference value (i.e., is this something that would normally be used in place for a short period?)
    8. Physical condition of the material (in consideration with preservation, placement, reformatting options, or possible withdrawal).
    9. Availability of the material elsewhere. (Is it available in microform? Is there a digital version?)

    Materials Suitable for Consideration for Selection and Transfer

    1. Out-of-date materials.
    2. Print runs of serial titles.
    3. Variant editions, regardless of date, unless a minimum number of copies are needed to meet user demand or they have compelling research value.
    4. Annuals and continuations of a reference nature other than the most current year, unless otherwise warranted.
    5. Books and other monographic titles which have been in the collection for at least 10 years, with no record of circulation or in-house use within the preceding 5 years. Materials will be considered for transfer in the order that they were added to the collection, unless an electronic copy is also available for use.
    6. Books with special features (e.g., maps or plates), or those whose condition may benefit from the environment and security of the Library Service Center.
    7. Materials acquired as part of large gifts (approximately 100 volumes or more) may be reviewed for transfer to the ARC immediately, if shelving all items in Alkek would cause overcrowding in a specific area of the collection.
    8. Formats which require special equipment that is not widely available (microfilm, audio recordings, tapes, VHS video, etc.).
    9. Wittliff Collection, University Archives, and Special Collections General materials as determined by curators or archivists responsible for those materials.

    Items Not Suitable for Selection or Transfer

    1. Current acquisitions, regardless of date of publication.
    2. Most current edition of reference works, directories, yearbooks, encyclopedias, etc,
    3. Cumulative indexes to specific periodical titles, regardless of where the serial is housed, unless an online version is available.
    4. Items not represented in the online catalog.

    Rare Materials & Special Collections

    The Wittliff Collections, the University Archives, and Special Collections General include rare and unique materials. Safeguarding these collections is essential; therefore, most of the materials will be transferred to the controlled climate of the ARC. Materials may be retrieved for use in the Wittliff Collections or the University Archives at Alkek Library. The curators and archivists are responsible for selecting and preparing materials for transfer to the ARC, as well as for developing procedures for retrieving materials for use at Alkek.

    Procedures for Reviewing Materials for Transfer to ARC

    In order to ensure space for new materials, the Acquisitions Department will create a list of materials to be considered for transfer annually. The list will be based on the number of years an item has been in the collection, with materials being considered in the order they were added to the collection. Items will not be added to the list if a checkout or in-house use has been recorded in the previous five years. The list will include at least as many items as were added to the collection in the previous year. The list will include title, location, call number, circulation, and in-house use data.

    The list will be divided into sections by classification number, then distributed to the appropriate subject librarian(s) for review. The Head of Acquisitions will establish deadlines for completing review; at least six months should be allowed for the review. Subject librarians will review the lists, indicate their retention/transfer recommendation, and return the list to the Head of Acquisitions.

    The Head of Acquisitions will update retention codes in the catalog as lists are received. If any items are recommended for removal from the collection, the Collections  Librarian will review the recommendation in accordance with the standard process for weeding, Metadata Services staff will review cataloging records and transfer materials as part of the department’s routine workflow.

    Special review projects may be conducted at intervals at the discretion of the Head of Acquisitions. Special projects may include reviewing all materials in a specific format, materials shelved in location scheduled for renovation, variant editions with low use, or similar circumstances. Title lists will be prepared and distributed to the appropriate subject librarians for review in the same manner as for the annual review of potential transfers.

    Selection for off-site shelving is an ongoing process. Consequently, these procedures will not suffice for every situation that may arise. In such instances, the professional librarians will employ their judgment, based on experience and knowledge.

    Transferring Materials from the ARC to a Browsing Collection

    Decisions to transfer materials to the ARC may be reversed. Members of the university community may request items from the ARC for individual use at any time. Those items will normally be returned to the ARC when that individual user no longer needs them.

    Items which are repeatedly requested from the ARC may be transferred back to the browsing collections at Alkek, RRC, or Schneider Music Library. Items may also be transferred back to the browsing collections on faculty request to meet current teaching needs.

  • Purchasing data sets from library funds depends on the license agreement. Some of the key factors include:

    • One-time purchase or subscription? Department allocations and research grants can be used for one-time purchases.
    • Perpetual access or time-limited access? Some companies say “one-time” but limit access to a specific time period. We treat these as subscriptions.
    • Permission to circulate or otherwise make available to TX State community? Library funds are used to purchase materials for the TX State community, so we have to be able to make it available.
    • Restrictions on use? Some licenses include restrictions we cannot enforce, such as requiring training before accessing health data sets or prohibiting any use of data in publications without prior written approval.

    When faculty or subject librarians ask about a specific data sent, acquisitions librarians research the license agreement to determine if it can be purchased with library funds. Please provide identifying information such as the title, company that produces the data set, or URL with further information.

  • Restricted kit refers to a title with multiple items intended to be used together, where the seller requires the library to submit a form or letter certifying that materials will be made accessible only to individuals with specific training or professional qualifications, employed in a specified profession or setting, or studying under the supervision of an individual who possesses specific qualifications.

    Requests to order restricted kits

    Effective January 2021, the Libraries no longer acquire restricted kits that require a faculty signature to certify qualifications. The Head Acquisitions Librarian makes the final determination on whether a kit may be added to the library collection.

    Identifying restricted kits in the collection

    The catalog record will include this note: "Access to this kit is restricted to individuals with appropriate education or professional qualifications. People who want to see this kit must bring a copy of the Restricted Kit Access form, signed by a Texas State University faculty member, to the library circulation/reserve desk."

    Shelving restricted kits

    Restricted kits will be shelved in Secured Collections, in RRC Closed Collection, or  in Reserves if requested by faculty. They will not be shelved in the general collection.

    Circulating restricted kits

    • When a restricted kit is requested, library employees will ask to see the Restricted Kit Access form.  Patrons will show signed form (paper or digital).
    • If the patron does not have a form, library employees will show the patron how to access the form from the catalog record.
    • Before retrieving the item, employee will verify:
      • Form is signed, and
      • Date is within the current semester.
    • Employees will only retrieve restricted kits that are listed on the signed form.
    • Employee will return the form to the student. It is the student’s responsibility to keep the form in case it is needed again during the same semester.
    • Employees will follow standard procedures for circulating kits.

    Restricted Kit Access form

  • The University Libraries have limited space and staffing to process donated books and materials, so we are not currently able to accept all the gifts we are offered. 

    The American Library Association maintains a list of places seeking used books. Many are charitable organizations, but a few buy used books.