Deselection and retention


Deselection or weeding of library materials is an important collection management activity that ensures the collection is responsive to change and remains current and relevant to the teaching, learning and research activities within the University. Deselection ensures the quality of the collection is high, whilst unnecessary, outdated or worn out material is removed or replaced.


Weeding: the discard and disposal of materials from the Deakin University Library collection.
Transfer: moving of materials from their present location to another location within the Deakin University Library collection.
CARM: Deakin University is as a member of the CARM (CAVAL Archival and Research Materials) Centre Consortium. The CARM centre is owned by a number of Victorian Universities and aims to provide a centralised, environmentally controlled storage facility for low use, research or last copy materials.
Relegation: transfer to the CARM Centre and relinquishment of ownership of the item to the CARM Centre consortium.
Disposal: the removal of items no longer required and not relegated to CARM.

General principles of deselection

  • The Library collection should be relevant and responsive to the teaching, learning and research activities of the University. Outdated, inaccurate or no longer useful materials will be evaluated regularly for possible de-selection
  • The currency of information is particularly important in some disciplines such as health sciences, information technology, business & law. The Library will implement a weeding schedule to more frequently check these discipline areas against the de-selection criteria to ensure an up to date and relevant collection
  • The following categories of serials will be evaluated regularly for possible de-selection
    • Serial titles no longer relevant to the teaching, learning or research of the University
    • Print titles where an online equivalent is held.
    • Incomplete, patchy or short runs of titles
    • Superseded titles where the content is no longer deemed useful for teaching, learning or research
    • Duplicate holdings of low use titles
  • The following monograph materials will be evaluated regularly for possible de-selection:
    • Titles that are no longer relevant to the teaching, learning or research of the University
    • Material that is out of date, inaccurate, damaged or badly worn
    • Material that has low use over recent years (this may vary according to the discipline)
    • Multiple copies of reading list materials once their relevance to the teaching curriculum ends
    • Superseded editions of monographs
    • Superseded editions of Deakin course materials
    • Resources in formats that have become technologically redundant including audio-tapes, VHS etc.

Principles for retention

Some material is ineligible for deselection and must be retained. In general this includes material on current reading lists, core or seminal works, rare or last copy items, items replaced imperfectly by electronic formats or where electronic formats hinder some bone fide uses.

For details, see:


Library staff are responsible for conducting ongoing evaluation of the collection to ensure it remains high quality and relevant. Library staff will check last copy status of weeded items to ensure these items are relegated to CARM. The Special Collections and Preservation Coordinator will advise on high value or significant items. The Manager, Collections and Access can advise on materials ineligible for deselection.