This article aims to describe how circulation statistics may be used to evaluate collection development policies.
The circulation statistics of books acquired by a science library in a specific year are analyzed by publisher, publication date, and subject.
The paper finds that older books circulated more than recently published titles purchased at the same time. Circulation averages varied considerably between publishers.
Checkouts are an imprecise measure of value. Number of items not purchase costs is the denominator of all averages used; there is a data bias against inexpensive books.
The procedure outlined can be used generally to evaluate collection development policies.
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