Faculty & Staff :: Faculty Handbook


Mission Statement

Brown Library's mission is to provide quality resources and information services for students, staff, and faculty; to prepare patrons to efficiently locate, evaluate, and use information; and to promote information literacy for student success

The effectiveness of the library in achieving its mission is assessed informally on a continuous basis through student and faculty feedback and more formally through student and faculty surveys.

Vision Statement

As a center for academic life, Brown Library will provide a friendly and comfortable physical facility where users are empowered to connect with information and with each other. We will provide resources and services needed by students (both on-campus and off-campus) to fulfill the reading and research requirements of the College's course offerings. We will teach students how to use the resources and services of a 21st Century library and show them the value of doing so. We will continue to enhance and preserve our print collection while fostering digital collections and services to give all Virginia Western students every opportunity to succeed in their academic ventures.

Policy for Library Orientation

General Orientation

The basic orientation to the Brown Library is given as a part of English 111. It consists of an introductory lecture, a handbook or handouts prepared by the library staff, and a library assignment which requires the students to use the major library databases. English faculty members schedule the orientation classes with the reference librarian. Many teachers also schedule workshop sessions in which the teacher and librarian assist students in the use of the library’s resources.

Open Library Orientation

General orientation sessions are scheduled at the beginning of each term for students who have not taken English 111 and are not enrolled in the class at that time. Sessions are announced through Email, news bulletins, the library’s Web site, and other information outlets.

Specialized Orientation

Teachers in classes other than English 111 who would like a formal, specialized library orientation should follow these criteria:

  • The orientation must be in connection with a written library assignment originated by the faculty member.
  • Faculty members should give the library staff at least one week’s notice to prepare specialized instruction.

Class Use of the Library

Faculty members may bring their classes to the library to use the electronic databases or other library materials. A librarian is always available to work with the teacher and class. These sessions must be scheduled in advance.

Book Selection Policy

In this document, "book" usually means any type of informational material that the library adds to its collection. These materials include books, periodicals, DVDs, etc.

Collection Development

The goal of collection development is to make sure that the library adequately and fairly supports each teaching area of the college. Responsibility for book selection lies both with the faculty and the library staff. Faculty members are largely responsible for recommending the acquisitions of materials in their subject areas. It is the responsibility of the library staff to obtain new books of general interest.

Because Virginia Western is a two-year college, most of the books acquired by the library should be at an introductory or undergraduate level. However, the acquisition of material to enable faculty to keep up with the growth of knowledge in their fields is also desirable, because this promotes faculty development and ultimately benefits the student. Therefore, the library may from time to time acquire graduate level material.

Procedure for Requests

To make sure that individual instructors do not lack materials to recommend, the library staff stimulates the interest and activity of faculty by routing announcements and reviews of books.

The request procedure is simple and flexible. Instructors may submit requests through e-mail or in writing or by phoning the library. It is also acceptable to submit publishers' catalogs, flyers, etc., and indicate the desired titles. Requesters are notified when their desired book is received.


Gift books are added to the collection if they are relevant to the curriculum and contain current information. Otherwise, they are disposed of through Duplicate Exchange or by some other means.

The library does not have rooms or spaces that can be devoted to special collections, i.e., donated collections cannot be kept intact. The library will choose what is to be cataloged from any set of donated books, and those books will be integrated with the rest of the collection.

Departmental Collections

Items for departmental collections should be purchased with departmental funds. Books purchased out of the library's book budget will become part of the library's collection.


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