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Woodward Library Test Collection Policy

Although library collections are traditionally presumed to be open to the community they serve, the very nature of tests presupposes limitations on access in order to insure that test validity is not compromised. These limitations are, moreover, reinforced by the highly restrictive requirements imposed upon libraries and test users by many of the authors and publishers of tests. Imposing limitations on access to information, as in the case of test collections, understandably requires clearly stated policies for use of the collection.  

The purpose of the test collection is to provide access to tests for study and research purposes, not for use in actual testing situations. Practice test administration is acceptable although the library does not provide the protocol / answer sheets.

I. Collection Development

  • The collection contains a core collection of recent editions of important tests. These are to be representative tests included in introductory courses on educational measurement and psychology. However, because of budget limitation, some very expensive tests may not be acquired.
  • In consultation with the faculty, the Education Liaison selects new tests to be acquired. One copy of selected tests will be purchase and additional copies of test sets can be purchased with justification.  
  • Tests and protocols purchased with library funds are meant to be used in the library. Because many tests purchased will have extra protocols provided as part of a set, the library will give these extra protocols to the ordering department. However, the library will not use library funds to purchase additional protocols for departmental use.
  • The Faculty representative is responsible for acquiring test publishers' catalogs and submitting requests.
  • The Education Liaison maintains communication with faculty interests in the collection.

II. Bibliographic Control

  • Tests are ordered and received by the Monographs Department, who notes special instructions and needed cross-references.
  • A staff member processes the test materials including making labels for the folders and numbering the pieces.
  • Materials will be cataloged and be displayable on library’s OPAC. Subject headings assigned will be based on Mental Measurement Yearbook’s headings. If a specific test is not listed in MMY, the faculty representative will be asked to supply the subject headings to be used from the headings defined in the MMY.  Cross references are made as necessary. Bibliographic information is added to the library’s OPAC.  Minimum information for each test record includes: title, number of pieces in folder/set, publication date, a unique test number and whether a manual is included. The bibliographic information will be accessible by title and subject using the subject system of Mental Measurement Yearbook. Since many tests may be referred to by acronyms, the title will include cross references from the acronym to the correct title.

III. User Access

  • Efforts are made to insure that the ethical and legal requirements for test use are met. The collection is intended for the use of students in subject areas which deal with standardized tests and for the use of faculty members whose field is concerned with standardized tests. Usage of the collection is limited so that the validity of tests is not compromised. The collection is maintained in a file which is not open to users, and users must present identification to charge out tests.  
  • Testing materials are intended as samples for viewing; the Library does not approve of photocopying tests. The copyright limitations are noted on most tests; usually these forbid copying, either in whole or in part.

IV. Access control

o      Tests will be kept in a locked file cabinet in the circulation area. The actual tests are filed by test number in the cabinet.  This test number will represent the call number of the item. Multiple copies of tests will be denoted with a test number followed by a copy number.

V. Circulation

  • Eligible users are APSU faculty, staff, and APSU students either enrolled in courses covering testing and measurement or working on supervised projects.
  • In general, tests are circulated for 2 hours to students and 7 days for eligible faculty and staff members.
  • To get a test, student needs to have a signed form from their course professor giving permission. Users must present  a valid picture ID to checkout these materials. Additionally, the user will be asked to sign out the test in a special notebook. Because of strict copyright restrictions, the materials must be used in the library.  The Library will keep one consumable/protocol with the test. This consumable will be stamped with the library name on the answer blank. This consumable/protocol will be laminated.
  • Circulation/Reserve staff members will count the number of pieces per folder prior to and after each circulation. Patron cannot leave the circulation/reserve desk without all pieces and parts returned.  The Monographs Librarian and Education liaison are notified when pieces of a test are missing. In addition, the instructor who gave permission for the test to be checked out to the student will be informed of the missing pieces. 
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