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Discovery Services Procedures: Damaged books

"How to" documents for OCLC, Alma, and general Discovery Services Procedures.


The Gifts Coordinator and his student employees should do the preliminary checking of damaged books pulled from the shelf.  Subject selectors should check regularly whether there are damaged books for them to review. Use the information on the checklist to evaluate the material and decide whether it should be withdrawn, replaced, or repaired. See the decision guidelines below.


  • Date pulled from shelf -- subject specialist name -- bibliographic record number
  • Condition of binding and text
  • If this is the only copy: publication date, checkouts in the last 5 years, is it a textbook, is it readily available from a standard vendor?
  • If this is not the only copy: how many copies do we have in what locations, are they on the shelf in good condition, do we have other editions?
  • If we have other editions, but this one is special, what is special? Only one by this translator or with illustrations by this artist, etc.

Decision guidelines:

1.  We have other copies/editions on the shelf in acceptable condition. This copy is moderately or badly damaged. WITHDRAW

2.  We have a newer edition on the shelf in acceptable condition.  WITHDRAW

3. This is a textbook designed for class use, with exercises, problems, etc. WITHDRAW

4. This is the only copy and the damage is minor. REPAIR

5. We have 1 or 2 other copies but they are all heavily used. This one has minor damage. REPAIR

6. This is the only copy, the damage is moderate, the book has been checked out recently and frequently. REPAIR

7. This is the only copy, the damage is severe, the book has been checked out recently and frequently. REPLACE

8.  We have other copies, but they are missing or in bad condition. REPLACE and consider withdrawing or repairing other copies

9.  This is the only copy; it is badly damaged; no copies or only very expensive copies ($200+) are available; it has been checked out recently. SUBJECT SPECIALIST SHOULD MAKE DECISION

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