Format Migration, Chapter 2

By Leilani Hall, Chair, Periodicals, Indexes, and Abstracts Oversight Group (PIAOG)

In the last newsletter, I discussed our move from print journals to online access. With the new subscription year underway, several decisions made last year are now being realized.

  1. We canceled the print format of 50 titles from Springer and Kluwer publishing to finance a combined collection of full text access from 1997 to more than 1100 titles. Titles such as Business Economics, International Review of Education, and Semigroup Forum are now available only online.
  2. We canceled 152 titles in print from Elsevier and Academic publishing because they are duplicated in ScienceDirect, a database of 1800 full text titles from at least 1995 (many reach farther back than this).
  3. We canceled 29 print titles from Wiley publishing because we subscribe to the full text online database, Wiley Interscience.
  4. We canceled print subscriptions to Dissertation Abstracts International, Comprehensive Dissertation Index, and Masters Abstracts International for online access to Digital Dissertations Online.
  5. We canceled 15 Oxford University Press subscriptions we had been receiving in print or microfiche and applied the savings toward electronic access to 170 OUP titles.

Decisions to cancel print titles don’t happen easily. We make sure that online providers are stable, that the version is the same as print and offers the capability of printing a pdf document and not just an html or text copy. If we find that an online title has been dropped which we formerly purchased in print and the title is deemed important to the subject area, with statistics showing a pattern of use, it is our policy to reinstate access to that title.

These are only a few of the changes we have made that will help stretch our shrinking budget. While we traditionally expect at least an annual 10% increase in subscription costs, our materials funds have not increased. For the last three years, we have managed to absorb periodicals' inflation costs by cancelling duplicates and low use titles as well as moving toward electronic access. The combined buying power of the CSU has helped through Chancellor’s Office negotiations with various publishers. Thus the impact has not been felt as badly by our periodicals collections as in our book collections. But that’s another story.