Amending Your Library's Selection Profile

A selection profile is the combined list of item numbers that you have chosen for your specific library community. As the content and format needs of your community change, so too should the selections of government publications that you receive.

NOTE: Additions of tangible items to selection profiles take effect October 1 of each year. Submit all changes to your library's selection profile in advance of this date. (Set apart visually with a box or other device)

Your selection profile is the list of all the item numbers that you have selected. The item number system is the way GPO groups materials together that emanate from a government agency or entity; this determines which Federal government publications you will receive through the FDLP. For more information, see Item Number System.

Making Changes to Your Library's Selection Profile

You can make changes to your profile by logging in to the Depository Selection Information Management System (DSIMS). Use your depository library number and internal password to login to DSIMS. More information about the internal password is located in Passwords Used by Depository Libraries.

If you make a mistake when adding or dropping item numbers, contact GPO as soon as possible. Otherwise, GPO may not be able to send the publications you want and may not be able to honor your claims if the error goes uncorrected.

Adding Item Numbers

You may add item numbers to your selection profile at any time throughout the year. GPO will immediately add item numbers corresponding only to online formats (EL) to your selection profile. When you select item numbers corresponding to any tangible format (P, E, MF), they will be added to your selection profile October 1; distribution will begin after that date.

Dropping Item Numbers

You may drop item numbers at any time during the year and the changes take effect immediately. Microfiche requests take a bit longer to process. After you submit your request to drop a microfiche format item number, it may take approximately one week for the drop to take effect, because the microfiche vendors conduct weekly updates.

When an item number is dropped, all material previously received under the item number must still be retained for the statutory five-year retention period, unless superseded. You can offer titles on a disposal list to your regional library once the five year period passes.

Once you drop an item number, you may not submit a claim for a publication that you did not receive under that item number.

Reviewing Your Library's Selection Profile

GPO recommends that libraries review their current and prospective selections while keeping the U.S. Government information needs of their community in mind. To view your library’s current selection profile, consult the Item Lister.

There are various ways to select item numbers within depositories. Some libraries divide up the List of Classes among their subject selectors; others have one Federal information specialist who is in charge of selecting all Federal material on behalf of the library. Selectors may also use WEBTech Notes to locate newly created item numbers that you may want to add to your selection profile. Documents Data Miner 2 is a non-GPO resource that combines selection information and the List of Classes and may assist you in this process as well. Libraries should centrally coordinate their amendments to the selection profile to avoid confusion.

Selection Profiles and Collection Development

Libraries are required to develop a selection profile that best meets the needs of their library users. Ideally, library staff will write and frequently update a library collection development policy to meet those changing user needs.

For more information, see Depository Collection and Development.

FDLP Collection Lists

There are several collection lists that library staff may want to review. The titles on these lists are U.S. Government resources which may be of interest to depository library communities.

  • Basic Collection List
  • Suggested Core Collection List
  • Essential Titles List for Public Use in Paper or Other Tangible Format

Required Item Numbers

GPO currently uses two required item numbers—0556-C and 1004-E—to distribute publications of such significance that all depository libraries must receive them.

Do not drop these item numbers from your selection profile. If your library drops either 0556-C or 1004-E, your library will not receive the associated print publications and you will need to purchase or acquire them from other sources.

Restrictions on Format Selections

Selective depository libraries may only select one tangible format of a publication in addition to an online equivalent (if available). For example, librarians at a selective library may choose a print version of a publication and also provide access to an online version. On the other hand, they may select a microfiche version and also provide access to an online version. They may not, however, select both the print and microfiche format.

Restrictions on Item Numbers by Library Type

Only specific library types can select certain item numbers. The List of Classes title field contains a note that describes any selection limitations.

Only regional depository libraries may select the following:

  • Item number 0993-A-01, Congressional Record (bound) 1985 and forward, SuDocs Class X 1.1:
  • Item number 1008-F, Serial Set (bound) 105th Congress and forward, SuDocs Class Y 1.1/2:

Refer to item numbers in the List of Classes to determine any restrictions on selection.

Maintaining a History of Your Library's Selection Profile

Libraries should retain historical files of their selection profile. You should include information in your files about when your library selected, dropped, or discontinued an item number. Your files must also state when your library superseded associated publications, or changed the publication format, or assigned a new SuDocs class number, or sent material to a selective housing site.

Historical information may come in useful for retrospective cataloging projects as well as disposal projects. There are various ways to record your selections.

You must retain item cards, once issued to identify library selections, for planned and unplanned future needs at your library. Also, you may wish to archive Item Lister files or maintain a local selection profile database.

Passworded Databases

Federal depository libraries have free access to Federal databases that are otherwise subscription based. To gain access to these resources, add the item numbers for the databases to your item selection profile. See Passworded Databases for more information (IF THE PASSWORDED DATABASES PAGE IS MIGRATED, THIS SECTION MAY BE DELETED).

(links) Basic Collection List, Essential Titles List for Public Use in Paper or Other Tangible Format, List of Classes, New Item Number Procedure for Selected Congressional Publications (Desktop article), Passworded Databases, Passwords Used by Depository Libraries, Suggested Core Collection List

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