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University of Connecticut University Libraries Archives & Special Collections at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center

Collection Development Policy


Archives & Special Collections at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center supports the University of Connecticut's goals of excellence in teaching, research and public service to the members of the University community and to the citizens of the state of Connecticut as outlined in the University's Academic Plan (2008). Archives & Special Collections acquires, preserves and makes accessible primary research and rare materials in the humanities and social sciences. The purpose of the Archives & Special Collections Collection Development Policy is to govern selection decisions. The policy reflects professional library and archival standards, University of Connecticut institutional needs, and the wider library and special collections environment. Collections range from the official records of the University of Connecticut to records and papers of Connecticut leaders and businesses to specialized rare book and non-print collections. Many of the manuscript and monograph collections in Archives & Special Collections have a strong Connecticut and New England regional focus. Formats collected include, among others, printed books, manuscripts, pamphlets, periodicals, maps, photographs, and audio/visual recordings.

Archives & Special Collections holds material primarily for researcher use and access. However, it also holds collections to assure their preservation and security. It may also acquire material that is not inherently unique but whose research value results from its being part of a larger collection (i.e., secondary or reference items). Archives & Special Collections may accept a small number of artifacts with an archival or manuscript collection or when those items could be used as part of the Library's exhibition program.

In building these collections, the Dodd Research Center collection development policy reflects financial constraints. Identification, selection and acquisition of collections reflect institutional and academic program strengths, acknowledging that materials here may complement materials held at other local institutions.

Institutional Programs and Clientele

In setting collecting priorities, Archives & Special Collections seeks materials that build regionally, nationally and internationally recognized collections, add significant rare and unique materials to the collections, and support academic programs. As a publicly supported institution, all collections may be used by students, faculty, staff, scholars and the general public to support personal and professional research interests. All researchers are required to register and agree to abide by established rules in order to access the collections

Research materials are used in the Archives & Special Collections reading room and photocopies, photographic and digital copies are available for a fee. Information about collections is available on the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center's web site and selected documents are provided electronically. Selected materials are also displayed as part of the Libraries' exhibition program and may be loaned to other institutions for exhibit.


Archives & Special Collections acquires most of its collections as gifts from donors or as transfers of official archives from the University of Connecticut. It has a limited budget which is used to add to existing holdings and to acquire reference materials. Any additional funds available for the acquisition of collections are used to purchase collections which are identified as a high collection priority.

Policy Implementation

Questions regarding interpretation of this document shall be forwarded to the Director of University Archives & Special Collections. The policy will be reviewed regularly to ensure that it continues to reflect professional library and archival standards, University of Connecticut institutional teaching and research needs, the wider archival and library environments. Such a review would also reflect changes in collecting policies at other institutions to avoid conflict or competition.

University of Connecticut official archives are covered by the State of Connecticut archives and records policies. Decisions regarding preservation or destruction of official university records will follow State of Connecticut official records policies.

The policy is also available here as a single document. [Adobe Acrobat reader required, 176KB PDF].