The introduction of electronic journals and electronic versions of journals has made serials collection management more complex. Libraries may want to offer a particular journal in both print and electronic formats, but find that it is often not financially feasible. More publishers are charging separately for the print or electronic versions or charging a higher price for both bundled together. As budgets become tight, librarians are having to choose between one format or another. In order to make the decision about what format to purchase, librarians need to know the format preferences of the users. To determine these preferences, library professionals can use several methods, such as user surveys, usage reports, and educated guessing.
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