Skip to Main Content
Hunter Library
Research Guides
Western Carolina University

STEM Faculty: Resource Acquisition

How to request an item

All requests should be made through Krista, your STEM liaison. You may make requests in person, by email, or call about requests.  The following information is helpful:

  • Title
  • Author
  • Date
  • Edition (if applicable)
  • ISBN or ISSN
  • Preference for print or electronic (if available)
  • If ordering an e-book specifically, number of simultaneous users needed (one, three, or unlimited)
  • For standards, please include the entire standard name, the standard number, issuing body, and year

Things the library does not generally acquire:

  • Single-use items in print such as test prep books (GRE, MCAT, etc.)
  • Items with restrictive digital rights management (DRM)
  • Superseded items such as earlier editions
  • Lab manuals
  • Out-of-print items (exceptions may be made)
  • Multiple copies of the same item in the same format
  • Textbooks (exceptions may be made)

The STEM liaison will contact you if there is any issue with a request you've made, including excessive cost.  Turn around times vary widely for materials and the library does not guarantee delivery or acquisition of materials by a certain day or date. 

Request something

Send an email with a request to your STEM liaison, Krista Schmidt.

New STEM Books!

How funding works

Library purchases are generally divided into two categories: one-time purchases and continuing commitments (AKA subscriptions). 

One-Time Purchases

All liaisons are allotted a certain amount from the collections budget for one-time purchases each year.  This allotment is based on a formula that includes credit hours, faculty per department, average cost of books in that discipline, and demand/supply of books published each year.  STEM funds are allocated into one STEM pot to allow for flexibility to meet given needs in any specific year.  No department or program in STEM has its own allocated amount. 

One-time purchases include monographs (in both print and electronic format), DVDs, standards, kits, etc.  Streaming film may or may not be a one-time purchase; it depends on the provider; it is more commonly a continuing commitment.  Liaisons select and approve one-time purchase items for acquisition.

Pie chart indicating 16/84 split between continuing and one-time funds

Continuing Commitments

Continuing commitments are those materials that are leased to the library via a subscription and this means the library does not own these resources outright.  Continuing commitments generally are a multi-year agreement requiring yearly payments to maintain access; yearly bills almost always come with an inflationary increase each year.  Continuing commitments make up the heavy majority of collections fund for the library. 

Continuing commitments do not pull from a disciplinary pot for funding; the ongoing commitments pot is one communal pot.  Items that are selected as continuing commitments are reviewed and approved by both a collections committee and the library's dean.  Individual liaisons do not control funds or issue final approval for continuing resources, though they may advocate for adding such resources. The types of materials that generally are considered continuing commitments include journal packages and databases.  Streaming film is often acquired through a continuing commitment model.