Career Collection

Collection Statement

A. Purpose

The primary purpose of the Career Collection is to provide an easily-accessible collection of recent occupational and job-hunting information for students preparing to enter occupations that require at least a baccalaureate degree. Information about specific occupations, employment trends, job-hunting techniques, and the world of work is emphasized. Secondarily, the collection serves all members of the university community seeking information about all levels of occupations. In support of the university curriculum, the collection serves as a resource for students enrolled in the one-credit-hour elective course of Career Decision Making (29:025).

The Career Collection is weeded regularly so that the resources are current. Withdrawn books that are judged to have continuing value are relocated to the general stacks. Some weeded resources are discarded.

Related Subject Areas/Other Resources

Most of the publications in the Career Collection are not duplicated elsewhere in the Library. Exceptions are a small group of educational directories also available in the Reference Collection and a select number of United States and Iowa documents which are duplicates of some publications found in the Documents and Maps Collection. Some information about fine arts careers is located in the Art and Music Collection.

Materials describing occupational research or career counseling techniques are not usually purchased with the Career Collection fund, but with other appropriate funds. For example, scholarly studies of the marketplace or detailed analyses of women's career choices are purchased with business funds. Information about how to help students make career decisions is purchased with psychology funds.

Another collection of occupational and job-hunting information also exists on campus to meet college students' needs for career information. The Career Resource Center at Placement and Career Services is designed to support the career exploration and academic advising of undergraduates and to support the cooperative education and placement services of the university. The Career Resource Center contains books about occupations and job-hunting. The Center contains a file of occupational brochures organized according to John Holland's vocational categories. Extensive files of employer recruitment literature and government employment literature are housed in the Center. Several job vacancy newsletters and computer-guided occupational information systems are available as well. The Center is open only from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday through Friday and is used primarily by university seniors. Some less current Career Collection material that is purchased on standing order by the Library is withdrawn to the Career Resource Center.

B. Primary LC Classes

Since the Library of Congress classifies information about occupations throughout the various subject areas, virtually all LC classes are represented in the Career Collection. However, the Career Collection contains relatively few bibliographies (Z 1001-).

Circulating Career Collection monographs are designated with the location of Career Coll., while Career Reference materials are designated Career Ref. Monographs, earlier editions of some high-use career reference works, and second copies of a limited number of reference works located in the Career Circulating section. Career reference works such as encyclopedias, ongoing looseleaf services, directories, and statistical handbooks are located in the Career Reference section. Also located in the Reference section are copies of some monographs that are anticipated to be in heavy demand. The monographs in this category are primarily a select number of resume writing books and career decision-making volumes, but some monographs describing popular occupations may be located in Career Reference so students have ready access to the occupational descriptions. Materials in the Career Information File material are stamped with a property stamp and filed alphabetically by occupational or subject area. Pamphlets, brochures, information sheets, journal article reprints, and some paperbound monographs of less than 50 pages are filed in the Career Information File.

C. Collection Guidelines

1. Scope of Coverage

a. Languages

English is the primary language of the collection. If a title is available only as a bilingual English-Spanish edition, it may be purchased.

b. Geographical Guidelines

Information about employment in the United States and Iowa is emphasized. Information about employment in foreign countries, other states, or major metropolitan areas is also included.

c. Chronological Guidelines

Information describing current occupations and contemporary job-hunting techniques is purchased. In addition, future-oriented materials, such as employment projections and descriptions of emerging occupations, is acquired. Many occupational titles that are acquired do contain some historical information to enable career decision-makers to gain a sense of the past of the occupation.

2. Treatment of Subject

Occupational descriptions, career decision-making resources, and job-hunting information is acquired, with emphasis on materials for students who will have at least a baccalaureate degree. Nonfiction works are purchased. Some collections of short biographies that characterize work in particular occupations are purchased selectively. Some materials that are labeled in reviewing sources or publishers' catalogs as young adult or juvenile are purchased selectively (particularly if an occupation is not described in other sources).

3. Types of Materials

Monographs, occupational briefs, pamphlets, looseleaf series, reference works, article reprints, and periodicals are acquired for the Career Collection. Job vacancy listings are acquired only on a very selective basis. Videos, recordings, and computer software are excluded.

4. Date of Publication

The emphasis is on the acquisition of current works.

D. ALA Collecting Level Codes

Occupational descriptions 3b

Occupational decision-making (including career change) 2b

Employment trends 1b

Job-hunting techniques (including resume-writing) 3b

Placement literature (including employer personnel information) 2b

World of work (including such topics as transition to work, working women, and dual-career couples) 1b

E. Strengths and Weaknesses of the Collection

The Career Collection adequately meets the need for information about occupations and job-hunting techniques among most students who choose occupations requiring at least a baccalaureate degree. As occupations become more specialized and fragmented, it is difficult to acquire information about every specialty. In addition, it is difficult to support the specialized information needs of diverse contemporary job-seekers (e.g., reentry workers or disabled job-seekers). Not much information on occupations requiring less than a baccalaureate degree is being acquired because of limited funds, the increasing price of occupational monographs, and the decreasing availability of free or low-cost occupational descriptions. Another noteworthy trend is that the theft and mutilation of Career Collection materials appears to be increasing.

B. Weeg

March 1991