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Collection Development for Earth & Environmental Sciences in the Boston College Libraries


Scope and Collecting Emphases

Criteria for collecting and maintaining materials in the subject area of Earth & Environmental Sciences, with links to general library collection policies.

Guide to the Earth & Environmental Sciences Collections

This collection serves the needs of the Boston College Earth & Environmental Sciences Department,  related needs of researchers  at the Weston Observatory campus, faculty and students in related courses in the Woods College of Advancing Studies, and the general interests of the Boston College community. The E&ES Bibliographer selects materials based on user requests, curricular needs and knowledge of the discipline. The bibliographer collaborates with the faculty library liaison appointed by the department and acts on purchase requests by faculty and graduate students whenever possible. The collection is housed primarily in O'Neill Library with a smaller seismology-focused collection at the Catherine O'Connor Library at the Weston Observatory.

Disciplinary Scope and Collecting Emphases

This collection spans all areas of Earth & Environmental Sciences, but with emphases as shown below.  

Selection favors materials from high quality scholarly publishers, regardless of country of origin or location of research.  The most important publishers in the field include Wiley, Springer, Elsevier, Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press and other university presses, as well as works from federal and state government and scholarly societies (such as the Geological Society of America, the Geological Society of London and the American Geophysical Union.) Works in regional geology are often from smaller, less scholarly publishers that fill this need.

Geographically, the collection is strongest in North American, and particularly northeastern geology, however the goal is to have a collection that provides good coverage of the whole earth.

Given the research interests of the E&ES Department, the major areas of collection focus include:

  • Coastal processes
  • Seismology
  • Environmental geology
  • Geophysics
  • Earth surface processes
  • Hydrology, petrology
  • Geochemistry
  • Sedimentary systems
  • Tectonics
  • Structural geology
  • Biochemical evolution and astrobiology

Materials are also purchased to support all areas of the curriculum.

Collaborative interdisciplinary relationships are seen particularly with Environmental Studies.  Interdisciplinary work is expected to increase with creation of the Schiller Institute.