The Reference and Information Department
serves as the information center for the Miller F. Whittaker Library and is
located on the first floor. The reference staff assesses and selects a
quality collection, provides access to a variety of resources, provides
reference and library instruction services, and coordinates with the
different schools and departments.
Reference Desk 803-536-8640
Ms. Doris Johnson Felder
and Information Specialist
Coordinator of State/Federal Government
Mrs. Debbie C. Gramling
and Information Specialist
Coordinator of Electronic Retrieval
Services - (803) 536-8647
Ms. Dianne Sumpter
Library Technical Assistant (Microfilms) - (803) 536-8640
Reference Services, Policies, and
Reference assistance is provided by the staff at the Reference and
Information Center to all library users including the general public. We are
here to assist you in locating general information, books, journal articles,
or other type of information. However, please note that it is not the
responsibility of the Reference Department to provide extensive research for
faculty and staff. We are here to provide you with necessary tools to
conduct effective research on any given topic. Visit the Reference and
Information Center or contact us at (803) 536-8640.
Online search assistance
through e-mail is provided for quick
reference, factual information, or information concerning SC State
University. Extensive research questions cannot be handled through e-mail
and instead require a visit to the library. You will be notified if your
question cannot be answered through the online service.
There are two coin-operated
copying machines for copying print materials are located on the 1st floor in
the photocopying room. The cost is $.15 a page.
There is a printer located
on the first floor in the Reference Area for computer copies.
Selection and acquisition
of materials for the library collection is prioritized according to
curricular needs with the goal of developing a balanced collection which
supports the undergraduate and graduate programs offered by SC State
The Miller F. Whittaker
Library also seeks to provide support for the information needs of the
faculty, administrators, and staff either by direct acquisition of library
resources or by engaging in cooperative sharing with other libraries. The
Library encourages the university community to actively participate in the
materials selection process, and always welcomes suggestions and input.
Responsibility for Selection
Ultimately the Dean of
Library Services is responsible for the guidance of collection
development. Much assistance in this important task is expected of the
University faculty and the library staff, as well as the University
administrators and students. Input concerning collection development by
community members is also welcome. While input from faculty,
administrators, student, and community members is sought, indeed relied
upon in terms of subject area expertise by faculty and administrators,
it is the Acquisitions/ Reference Librarian which makes the final
recommendations concerning selections and collection development.
Ordering and selection responsibilities for free government publications
via the federal and state depository systems lie with the Government
documents/Reference Librarian; for web-based or electronic resources,
with the Electronic Resources Librarian.
Responsibilities for the Faculty
Faculty members are
responsible for submitting requests for library maters which support the
curricular and research needs of their departments. Each academic
department appoints a Department Liaison for the library who has an
overview of the department’s curriculum, as well as a strong knowledge
of the library’s collections. This individual initiates order requests
for books and forward them to the Library Liaison who authorizes
ordering of library materials by the acquisitions department.
Each subject liaison is
responsible for a regular and ongoing program of collection assessment,
improvement, and de-selection, including materials in all collected
formats and media.
Each subject liaison,
with input from faculty will produce a formal subject profile for the
materials in his or her subject areas.
Formal assessment of
the collection will take place annually, using best practices,
benchmarking with standard sources and selected libraries, and the most
current tools and techniques. Gaps thus identified in the collection
will be filled.
out-of-scope materials will be weeded.
Acquisitions/Reference Librarian will oversee and provide support to all
subject liaisons in collection management and development activities.
This librarian, in collaboration with a subject liaison’s supervisor and
any relevant committees, will have the power to review and revise
Books and Non-print Media
So as to enhance
faculty input in the selection procedure, academic departments are given
a budget near the beginning of the academic year for purchase of books
and non-print media. Allocations for these purchases are based on
application of an acquisitions formula which factors in the cost of
materials, enrollment in classes, as well as numbers of majors and the
existence of graduate programs. Faculty request for purchase of books
and non-print media should contain as much information as possible about
the requested items and should be prioritized and will be accepted via
e-mail or marked publishers catalogs, and book jobbers. They should be
sent to the librarian who is the liaison to that department or sent to
the Acquisitions/Reference Librarian. The Acquisitions/ Reference
Librarian will set appropriate deadlines for requests for requests to be
submitted and encumbered by the end of the fiscal year. Requests which
were not filled during the fiscal year will be retained and considered
for ordering during the subsequent fiscal year. Faculty will be
contacted concerning the status of their request, if problems arise
concerning filling requests for ordering. Faculty will be informed when
their materials ordered have arrived in the library. Funds not expended
by faculty requests will be expended by library faculty liaisons or the
Acquisitions/Reference Librarian in order to maintain progress toward
development of a balanced collection.
Faculty input is also
sought in the selection of serials. Each spring academic departments
are asked to review library serial holdings which support their areas of
the curriculum and to suggest additions or deletions to subscriptions
defined by the Library as non –core titles. The cost of subscriptions
as well as the number of titles will be considered in the addition
/deletion process; with preference given to titles in digital format,
requests for additions to titles in serials holdings are accepted
throughout the year by liaison librarians or the Electronic
Resources/Reference Librarian, who coordinates the annual selection of
in electronic format is considered for purchase as requests are received
and consortia purchase opportunities arise. Selection of such resources
is reviewed by the Electronic Resources/Reference Librarian.
Recommendations for purchase are made to the Acquisitions/Reference
Librarian and the Dean of Library Services; space and budgetary
considerations often necessitate that materials purchased in electronic
format require the deletion of duplicate materials in print format.
Criteria for Selection of Materials
The following factors
are recommended for faculty to consider when making selections:
accuracy, anticipated authority and reputation of the publisher and/ or
author; anticipated need in fulfilling request for information; social
and/ or artistic merit and timeliness of the item; need for additional
material on the same subject in the collection; and cost in relation to
anticipated benefit. The use of reviews in selection journals and
standard selection journals and standard selection sources is
recommended during the selection process.
Weeding is the process
of withdrawing obsolete or damaged materials for the libraries’
collections. This process is recommended by the American Library
Association, the national accrediting agency for professional librarians
Library Gift Policy
The Miller F. Whittaker Library accepts gifts and
contributions for the development of its collection. We are particularly
interested in receiving books and other materials that fill existing gaps
and that supports the University’s curriculum. It is our policy to treat
gifts as new acquisitions and evaluate them by the same standards applied to
Guidelines for Donating
Please note that the
Library shares your concern that students and faculty actually will use your
gift material. Therefore, if you are considering donating to the Miller F.
Whittaker Library, we encourage you first to contact the Collection
Organization Department to inquire about the usefulness of your proposed
The Library acknowledges
each gift with a letter; however, the Library does not provide donors with
an itemized list of the materials donated.
Books and other library
materials given to the Miller F. Whittaker Library become the property of
the Library. We will add these gifts to our collection only if they support
the research and teaching mission of the University. The Library reserves
the right to discard or donate remaining materials that does not support the
mission of the Library.
All material gifts to the
Miller F. Whittaker Library are considered non-cash charitable donations.
Due to legal restrictions, the Library is unable to provide appraisals. If
you are considering a tax deduction and wish to have your collection
appraised, it is advised that you do so prior to donating to the
Miller F. Whittaker Library’s collection consists of the reference
collection located on the first floor, a circulating collection located in
the second and third floor stacks, the Special Collection of books written
by and about African Americans located on the lower level, and the Historical and
Collection and Archives located on the third floor.
The library's book collection
is organized according to the Library of Congress (LC) Classification
System; state government documents collection is organized according to the
State Documents Classification System; and federal government documents
collection is organized according to the Superintendent of Documents (SuDocs)
The reference collection
consists of general and subject specific bibliographies, dictionaries,
encyclopedias, handbooks, guides, literary criticisms, etc.
Other resources housed in the
reference area include print journals, magazines, and newspapers.
The library is a partial depository for a select group of federal documents
distributed by the Government Printing Office and a sub-depository for state
publications. The microform collection housed in
the reference area includes ERIC documents, journals, magazines, and
newspapers as well as the Atlanta University Black Culture Collection and
African American Dissertation Collection.
The general circulating
collection consists of books that support the departmental curriculums
on campus in the College of Business and Applied Professional Sciences;
the College of Education, Humanities, and Social Sciences; the College
of Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Technology; and the School of
SC State Historical
Collection and Archives
The SC State Historical
Collection consists of materials relating to alumni and other associates
of the school. The collection Includes annual reports, minutes,
correspondences, speeches, brochures, campus publications, books,
newspapers, college clippings, programs, oral history, tapes,
specialized artifacts, and theses and dissertations written by students
The Special Collection
(Spec. C) consists of books written by or about African Americans.
The collection highlights the African American experience and culture.
Online Reference Resources
library has maintained a website since 1998 to provide access to
information about the library, the library’s resources and services, and
contact information for library departments and staff. In addition, the
library’s website serves as the portal for accessing the library’s
online catalog for searching the library's collection as well as the
library’s paid subscription web databases for research. The
website also links to several free online resources that patrons may
Historically Black Colleges and Universities Digital
- a digital collection of documents and photos celebrating the founding
of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) sponsored by the
HBCU Library Alliance.