Selection of materials

Collection management at UQ Library seeks to support the teaching, learning and research needs of the University. 

The Library has a policy to select materials in electronic format, where available. However, we do continue to purchase materials in print, as electronic formats are not well-suited to some subject areas and are not appropriate for some clients.

We encourage Library users to participate in the selection of materials. UQ staff and students can request a purchase.

UQ Library collections are also supplemented by our document delivery services, intended to support the research activity of the University, in particular.

Reading lists

UQ Library assists course coordinators to compile reading lists of Required and Recommended resources for their classes. While students are expected to purchase textbooks, it is Library policy to make copies of course reading materials available, as below:

Required titles: 1 copy per 100 students (minimum 2 copies with up to 15, across all campuses)
Recommended titles: 1 copy (across all campuses)


The Library Collections Budget is developed annually and operates from January to December. About 80% of the Library’s acquisitions are published overseas, so fluctuations in the currency market can have a significant impact on our budget. As a result, the Library engages a number of strategies to minimise financial risk exposure.

Support from the community is also much appreciated. Interested donors are able to specify that their gifts go towards supporting the Library’s collection.


The Library is working to control the need for shelving space, whilst still retaining collection levels that support high-quality teaching and research. We manage this balance by selecting electronic formats where possible and establishing decision-making guidelines for the disposal of specific materials. Lesser used material is housed in the Library's warehouse.

Recently, we have undertaken a number of initiatives to expand space for students, involving significant movement of our print collections and relocation of lesser used materials to the our warehouse. The Library has streamlined the delivery process for these materials, so that a requested item can be picked up within 1-3 days.

Further information

UQ Library's Collection Management Policy