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E-preferred policy for journals

Electronic access (with no duplicate print subscription) is the preferred delivery option for the Library's journals. The following guidelines list circumstances under which a print subscription may be maintained even when access to an electronic version is available.


  • Indexing and abstracting of content is selective and this will adversely affect teaching, learning and research
  • The paper version is issued earlier than the electronic version and the delay in access would adversely affect teaching, learning or research
  • Important content for teaching, learning or research is excluded in the online version and is not available easily via other means on the Internet. eg, letters, supplements, association announcements, commercial advertisements or graphics essential for study or research are excluded
  • Embargoed content adversely affects the teaching, learning or research use of the journal
  • The image quality of illustrative materials (tables, graphs, photos, illustrations, musical notation, scripts etc) is inferior and is not adequate for teaching, learning or research
  • The journal is a current news-type publication (daily or weekly publication)
  • The electronic version does not offer effective browsing access for journals where browse ability is important for teaching, learning or research use
  • Journals of Australian or Victorian professional associations where only the print version carries content such as conference notices and advertisements, which are important for the professional development of staff and students.


Print titles may be retained if the license does not allow the University to effectively use the title for teaching, learning or research. E.g. If the license does not allow:

  • satisfactory downloading, viewing, saving, printing
  • multiple printing for coursepacks OR direct linking to article level
  • access by remote students

Technical capability/support

  • If there is a history of inadequate technical support for the product
  • If the technical capability does not allow key activities such as satisfactory viewing, downloading or printing from personal workstations or networked workstations

Note: satisfactory downloading is defined as that which is reasonable using the University's bandwidth (i.e. equivalent access is available when compared with print issues).

Retention of print back issues

Similar issues are considered when deciding to retain or withdraw back issues when purchasing an electronic back set. See Guidelines for retaining print journal back issues for more information.

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