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Criteria for Selecting Electronic Resources
Last revised May 15, 2001
- The intellectual content of the electronic resource, whether purchased or free, must fit within the established parameters of the Brandeis Library & Technology Services (LTS), the judgment of the relevant subject bibliographers, and the Brandeis University curriculum.
- The electronic resource must provide sufficient added value over other formats.
- The search interface must be powerful, flexible, user-friendly, and well-indexed, with numerous points of access.
- Whenever possible, access to the electronic resource must:
- Support remote users of library and information resources
- Deliver reliable remote access
- Be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
- Use a unified and intuitive interface
- The cost of the resource must be sustainable by the electronic resources budget for the foreseeable future.
- The technology and staff to deliver and support the resource must be available at Brandeis Library & Technology Services.
- Library & Technology Services must participate in a consortial purchase for a desired resource when the agreement provides a significant price advantage over the cost as an individual institution.
- Library & Technology Services must purchase available backfiles of an electronic resource if affordable and deemed bibliographically essential for the collection.
- Ideally the vendor (or some other reliable source) must provide for archival access to the data.
- Library & Technology Services must maintain the stability and consistency of electronic titles offered to the Brandeis community whenever possible.
- Library & Technology Services prefers Web delivery unless the Web version fails to meet the basic criteria for a search interface (see point 3) or the cost differential between the formats is significant enough to be a factor.
- The resource must employ (whenever possible) a user interface already familiar to the Brandeis community.
- Ideally the format should provide a single-search access to the entire electronic resource.
- The resource must be compatible across a wide variety of platforms (PC, Mac, etc.); Library & Technology Services will only consider platform-dependent products if no other viable option is available and the resource is considered essential.
- Library & Technology Services will not support more than one version of an electronic resource (such as electronic and print) unless there are overriding and compelling reasons for maintaining multiple electronic formats.
- When moving an electronic resource from one format to another, there must be compelling reasons to make the change; and the content of the new resource should be comparable to or better than that of the existing format, unless others factors prevail.
Vendor and Licensing
- The license must accord with the Brandeis Library & Technology Services' established electronic resource licensing policy.
- The vendor should be stable and reliable, and offer technical support.
- A change of vendors will occur only when a new vendor can deliver a superior search interface, enable greater and more reliable remote access at a reasonable cost, or provide other key factors, such as archival