Subject Collection Development Guidelines

Subject Collection Development Policy

JMU Libraries supports James Madison University's Department of Political Science with a collection that facilitates instruction and research in the department’s undergraduate and graduate curriculum. The department offers degrees in several programs: 

B.A. in Political Science

B.A. in International Affairs

Cross-disciplinary B.A. in International Affairs with International Relations and Comparative Study concentrations

B.S. in Public Policy and Administration

Masters in Political Science--European Union Policy Studies Concentration

Masters in Public Administration

Certificate in Management of International Non-Governmental Organizations

Certificate in Strategic Planning for International Stabilization and Recovery

Because of high student enrollment demand and limited faculty resources, the department established enrollment controls (i.e., selective admission) in 2003.  Undergraduate research may be somewhat more rigorous than in other departments.  As can be seen from the degrees listed, the undergraduate curriculum covers a wide range of the discipline, including political theory, U.S. government, international affairs, public policy-setting, and public administration. Political science collections also provide considerable materials support for Justice Studies, for General Education students researching and writing on political topics or public policy controversies, as well as support for the library-wide mission of fostering environments that allow users to connect with ideas and information.

Collection Areas

LC Class


Collecting Level


Religion and Politics

BL65.C58 / BL65.P7

3c Advanced study level


Socialism, Communism, Anarchism


3c Advanced study level


Legislative and Executive Papers


3c Advanced study level


General Political Science


3c Advanced study level


Political Theory and the State


3c Advanced study level


Comparative Politics


3c Advanced study level


Political Advertising


3c Advanced study level


Executive (US)


3c Advanced study level


Legislative (US)


3c Advanced study level


Practical Politics


3c Advanced study level


Political Parties


3c Advanced study level


Politics -- Americas (non-US)


3c Advanced study level


Politics – Europe


3c Advanced study level


Politics -- Asia, Middle East, Islamic

Islamic JQ1-1852

3c Advanced study level


Politics -- Africa


3c Advanced study level


Politics -- Atlantic and Australia


3c Advanced study level


Local and Municipal Government


3c Advanced study level




3c Advanced study level


Emigration and Immigration


3c Advanced study level


International Relations


3c Advanced study level


Public Policy and Administration


3c Advanced study level


Public Policy and Administration

JF1338-2112, JK468

3c Advanced study level


General Law and Jurisprudence


3b Intermediate study level


Constitutional Law


3c Advanced study level


Criminal Law


3b Intermediate study level


Federal Law


3c Advanced study level


U.S. State Law


3c Advanced study level


International Law

KZ1 - KZD5680.2

3c Advanced study level



Materials are considered for their subject area, curriculum relevance, authoritativeness, currency, and price. User requests and appropriateness for the entire collection are also key criteria for consideration.

  • Primary emphasis is on current materials.
  • Print is the primary format for the general collection; electronic formats are favored for reference resources and periodical collections.  The liaison librarian will monitor developments in electronic publishing as well as the needs and preferences of departmental faculty and students to determine if/when monographs in electronic format(s) are viewed as more acceptable for the general collections. Other formats may be purchased selectively to support the curriculum.
  • Acquisition of specific data sets which support curricular and research needs will be considered.
  • English-language materials are purchased almost exclusively.
  • Materials are acquired primarily from U. S. publishers; also English language materials published by international organizations or agencies.



The responsibility of acquiring and managing Political Science collections primarily resides with the subject/liaison librarian(s) for that area. Liaison librarian(s) are expected to keep apprised of developments in the department and the field, and to work with departmental faculty to meet their instructional, research, and resource needs. Collection management activities are monitored and administered by JMU Libraries' Collection Development Committee, with expenditures authorized by the Dean of Libraries.

Updated April 2, 2012 by Reba Leiding.


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