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Primary journal selection using citations from an indexing service journal: a method and example from nursing literature.

By A W Hafner


Although serial literature is extremely important to a library collection, it is also the source of many problems. Specialty journal selection is difficult, particularly for the librarian of a small or intermediate-size library that is not in a position to develop or maintain an exhaustive or inclusive collection in a particular field or discipline. Steadily increasing journal costs and recent economic trends necessitate establishment or reexamination of a periodical collection policy. In this investigation, the technique used analyzes citations assigned to medical subject headings (MeSH) and subheadings by indexers who prepare the MEDLARS data base. Citations have been retrieved by exploiting the on-line nature of the MEDLARS data base. A four-year time period is used to identify specialty journals in the area of nursing. Results given include a separate rank-order listing arranged by decreasing frequency of productivity for each MeSH term searched. A composite listing is given for the 16,355 unique citations retrieved. The approach illustrated and data presented may be useful in establishing library policy for questions of periodical subscription and setting of priorities for binding and microform purchases. The purpose of the approach described is to predict collection demand with efficiency and economy

Topics: Research Article
Year: 1976
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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