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Library Cancellation Projects

Details on NMSU Library cancellations

Basic Information

This guide was created in the Spring of 2010 to inform and communicate with the NMSU community about the Library's serials cancellation process. During spring semester 2010 the Library hosted many informational sessions, seeking feedback from academic departments and colleges on specific title cancellation choices. Meanwhile the Library sought relief from the University Administration, requesting that the University Administration both restore the 2.5% reduction in indirect costs from the research overhead and that it institute a base percentage increase in the library's budget. The NMSU Library's base budget has not received a dedicated, annual increase from NMSU administration in 20+ years. Throughout spring 2010, the Library sought to make the cancellations as painless as possible; however, in the end, the sum total of all title cancellations was 723 titles, at an estimated cost of $578,311.26. This cancellation has given  the NMSU Library and its users a little bit of breathing room. We do not anticipate another serials cancellation of this magnitude for at least 2 years.

Final Cancellations, Fall 2011

In Spring 2010, the NMSU Library launched a large scale materials reduction project.  Inflation rates for journals and databases continue to increase. The funding lines used to supplement the Library’s materials budget, including indirect cost revenue and General Obligation Bond funds, have decreased. In order to balance the materials budget, a $575,000 reduction (27%) of the materials budget was necessary.
The following criteria were used to guide decision-making for  this project: high cost-low use titles; low cost-low use titles; titles with patterns of large cost increases over time; and titles for which full-text access is available through other database subscriptions. Library staff worked together with other campus faculty to prioritize titles to minimize consequences for teaching and research.

The cancellations involve 723 print and electronic journals, databases, standing orders, and microforms totaling $578,311.26 (2010 subscription prices). After December 2010, NMSU will no longer have access to these subscriptions (see list below).  In addition, students, faculty and staff will lose access to over 1,300 journals from the Springer and Elsevier/Academic Press publishing groups.  In order to make the necessary cancellations, multi-year and consortial packages with these publishers were discontinued. A list of titles from these discontinued packages is found below.

The Library will continue to offer information delivery services (Request It!), but these services are vulnerable in a climate where the majority of academic libraries are also cutting subscriptions. Although interlibrary loan is an excellent way to provide access to infrequently-used articles, it can quickly become very expensive if large numbers of users request articles from the same journal resulting in the Library paying copyright clearance or other fees  to obtain information. For these reasons, interlibrary loan and document delivery alone will not offset journal cancellations.
The NMSU Library is not alone in facing this problem. Other academic libraries face similar challenges. Unless fundamental changes occur in the scholarly communication market, faculty, students, and staff everywhere face a future of less access to information and at higher costs. 

The NMSU Library is working to strengthen our ability to access information in this challenging environment. We are investigating new partnerships with other libraries to maximize access to resources while minimizing costs. We are also exploring digital preservation services to sustain archival access to our subscribed electronic collections. The Library looks to the successful passage of GO Bond B, which would help offset inflation by approximately $300,000 for FY12. We will also continue to investigate alternative revenue streams needed to offset inflation and limit future cancellations. However, we anticipate further cancellations will be necessary in the 2011-2012 academic year.

Thank you for your support with these difficult decisions. Please contact us with your questions or if you would like to discuss these issues.


Last updated: September 15, 2010

Cancellation List as of Spring 2010

We have finalized revisions to the list of titles the NMSU Library will be cancelling (see list below) for FY 2011.  For the most part, journal subscriptions will continue until December 2010 and electronic journal subscriptions will be available until December 31, 2010. Most of the databases that we are cancelling are fiscal year subscriptions (July-June) and will no longer be available after June 30, 2010.

In the event that research overhead funding is restored to the Library, we may not need to cut as deeply into our serials subscriptions as we had planned. Considerations for removing titles from our cancellation list are:

1)      Electronic journal subscriptions that comprise a publisher’s package and cannot be unbundled from the package and cancelled without cost increases.

2)      Print or electronic titles for which we have no online access from our full text databases.

3)    Titles that support new and/or emerging research and teaching programs?

4)    Titles that support departments or programs, which were heavily affected by the project (more than 27% of overall allocation)

The Library wishes to thank all of you who worked with us so tirelessly to craft a cancellation list that did the least harm possible. Many things will be up in the air over the summer. We will post an update on this project prior to the start of fall semester and wish everyone a restful summer.

Preliminary Cancellation List FY11

We have compiled a list of titles to cancel based on the following criteria:

  • High cost-low use
  • Low cost-low to no use
  • Full text availability in our full text databases
  • Consultation with departments re: less useful titles
  • Dramatic cost increases over time
    For print titles, we did not have usage data so we based our cancellation decisions on perceived importance of the title to the academic program or department. 
    We ask you to review these titles and if you have questions or concerns to contact your department's subject specialist or Susan Beck at 646-6171. 
    The deadline for comment is noon, Monday, April 26, 2010.
    We ask that departments not request swapping a to-be-cancelled title with a newly suggested added title. Unfortunately we are not in the position to add new serials titles with this project. On the contrary, we need to find over a half a million dollars in savings so we can preserve the collections that we do have. 
    If individuals or departments wish the Library to retain a specific title, we ask that they find an alternative title of equal value from their department's list and to inform their department's subject specialist or Susan Beck about the need to retain that title.  In any case, we will need to learn about why the journal is important and specifically why it needs to be retained. We will add all title challenges to a list for further consideration and post all title challenges here, on this libguide. If our budget picture changes, we will be able to act quickly.