The collection is maintained by primarily by the Biology Library.
The Biological Sciences collection supports teaching and research in the School of Life Sciences in all areas of biology, theoretical or applied. The collection also supports teaching and research in related fields such as agriculture, anthropology, applied life studies, engineering, geology, natural history, physics, and veterinary science, to name a few. The majority of the biological sciences collection, some 115,000 volumes, is located in the Biology Library. Portions of the collection are also located in the Natural History Survey (36,000 volumes), the Bookstacks (20,000 volumes), and the remaining volumes are located in various other departmental libraries. The biological sciences collection is preeminent in the state and region, with a distinguished reputation as one of the finest collections in the nation. Holdings in taxonomy and systematics of flora and fauna are especially strong.
Version Date: December, 2006
I. Collection Description
To support teaching and research in the School of Life Sciences through, and beyond, the doctoral level in all areas of biology, theoretical or applied. The collection also supports teaching and research in related fields such as agriculture, anthropology, applied life studies, chemistry, engineering, geology, health sciences, home economics, natural history, physical education, physics, psychology, and veterinary science.
History of Collection:
The bulk of the biological sciences collection evolved from the Natural History Library which originated from the collection of the State Laboratory of Natural History developed by the late Professor Stephen A. Forbes. The nucleus of the Natural History Library was transferred from Normal, Illinois, when Forbes was made Professor of Zoology and Entomology at the University in 1884. In 1911, books from the University of Illinois departmental seminars of Botany, Entomology, Geology, Physiology, and Zoology were added to the collection. During 1913-14, the University transferred books from the Main Library to be added to the Natural History Library collection. In 1940, the present Natural History Survey Library was established in the Natural Resources Building by the transfer of many of the materials from the Natural History Library. When the School of Life Sciences was established in 1959, coinciding with the completion of Burrill Hall, named for the eminent biologist Thomas Jonathan Burrill, the collection in the Natural History Library was split again. A Geology Library was formed, taking the geological materials from the Natural History Library, while the books and serials covering the fields of the life sciences were moved to the Biology Library, 101 Burrill Hall.
Estimate of Holdings:
200,000 (December, 1983).
State, Regional and National Importance:
The biological sciences collection is preeminent in the state and region, with a distinguished reputation as one of the finest collections in the nation. Holdings in taxonomy and systematics of flora and fauna are especially strong.
Unit Responsible for Collecting:
Most selection of biological literature originates in the Biology Library and to a lesser extent, the Natural History Survey, although there are collection activities in libraries supporting disciplines listed in the purpose statement.
Location of Materials:
The majority of the biological sciences collection, some 115,000 volumes, is located in the Biology Library. Portions of the collection are also located in the Natural History Survey (36,000 volumes), the Bookstacks (20,000 volumes), and the remaining volumes are found primarily in the Agriculture, Undergraduate, and Veterinary Medicine Libraries.
Citations of Works Describing the Collection:
Downs, pp. 30-31. Major, pp. 1, 3, 32, 48.
II. General Collection Guidelines
Standard statement. English translations, if they are available, are usually preferred to the original foreign language work.
Treatment of Subject:
Standard statement with the exception that textbooks are collected selectively. The biological sciences include all areas of biology, theoretical or applied, with emphasis on anatomy, biophysics, botany, ecology, entomology, genetics, microbiology, physiology, zoology, and related interdisciplinary fields. Historical and biographical materials relating to the biological sciences are collected selectively with responsibility in biology and the history of science funds. Interdisciplinary areas, such as environmental literature and the neurosciences, are the responsibility of individual selectors as they pertain to departmental collections. Clinical material is included in the biological sciences collection only if it is paired with experimental work; clinical literature is normally collected by the Veterinary Medicine Library. The biological sciences collection also extends into such areas in linguistics as neurological linguistics; in anthropology, ethnobiology and human evolution; and in psychology, physiological psychology.
Types of Materials:
Standard statement. Laboratory workbooks, field guides, and manuals are purchased selectively and more comprehensively in some specialized areas which directly support the curriculum.
Date of Publication:
Standard statement. Special efforts are made to collect first editions of classic works in the field of taxonomy and systematics.
Place of Publication:
III. Collection Responsibility by Subject Subdivisions with Qualifications, Levels of Collecting Intensity, and Assignments
Below is a table that lists specific subject subdivisions within the collection. Each row in the table lists a specific subject subdivision, followed by three columns noting: Collection Strength, Primary Assignments and Secondary Assignments. The Existing Collecting Strength column notes how well the existing collection covers that topic on a 1 to 5 scale with 5 being very strong. The Primary Assignments column lists departmental libraries that have the greatest collection intensity of subject materials, respectively. In the case of 2 or more libraries listed, the collection intensity is comparable. The Secondary Assignments column list departmental libraries where additional materials may be found.
|Biological Sciences Collection|
|SUBJECT SUBDIVISIONS||EXISTING STRENGTH||PRIMARY ASSIGNMENTS||SECONDARY ASSIGNMENTS|
|Aging, biological aspects||4||Biology||Veterinary Medicine|
|Anatomy and histology||4||Biology||Veterinary Medicine|
|Botany||4||Biology||Natural History Survey|
|Ecology||4||Biology||Natural History Survey|
|Electron microscopy-see Microscopy Entomology||4||Biology||Natural History Survey|
|Environmental biology||4||Biology||Natural History Survey|
|Genetic engineering-see Biotechnology||4||Biology|
|Histology-see Anatomy and Histology Immunology||4||Biology|
|Microscopy, including electron, optical and scanning||4||Biology||Engineering|
|Oncology, theoretical aspects||3||Biology|
|Plant biology-see Botany tissue culture||4||Biology||Veterinary Medicine|
|Zoology||4||Biology||Natural History Survey|
Version Date: 2006