Collection development is driven by our mission to support the research, teaching, service and economic development activities of the University, but is necessarily constrained by our budget. The draft collection development statement of 2010 outlines some principles. (It also provides assessments/policy statements for each subject area, although these are now somewhat dated.)
"The MU Libraries make scholarly material available to our users by means of purchase, subscription, lease, and borrowing from other libraries. Which option applies in particular cases reflects a number of considerations:
...Our purchases include all currently popular formats: print, ejournals, ebooks, microfilm, microfiche, DVD, audio CD, data CD-ROM. We prefer formats that are easily accessible and most useful.
...The overwhelming majority of books purchased are in print. An increasing number of new books are also available as ebooks....The ebooks are generally more expensive, but for many disciplines, print books will simply not be used. Particularly suitable for etreatment are books used for lookups, rather than cover-to-cover reading.
...We purchase journal subscriptions in the most cost-effective manner possible, which usually is Internet only. In general, we prefer Internet journals to print ones, which greatly enhance access and usability."
Selectors use a variety of sources in making collection decisions.