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Linguistics collection policy

Liaison librarian

  • Tatiana [dot] Bedjanian [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email) 514-398-7383

History of the Collection

The Linguistics Collection like the Department is of recent vintage. Historic strength lies in the philology of classical, modern European, Amerindian and African languages; and the main thrust of growth is in theoretical linguistics and in a few other areas as reflected by the collection levels provided below.

Current Collection Development

Priority is given to the journal collection and standing orders because of the present publication pattern of the discipline. The collection of journals is greatly enhanced by a large number of full-text journals now available electronically, notably all journals published by Elsevier, Kluwer, Blackwells. The high cost of monographs in this field enforces a great degree of selectivity in monographic acquisitions as well.

Academic Programmes and Liaison

The Linguistics Department provides a range of courses on the various branches of theoretical linguistics and an increasing number of topics in applied linguistics, and supports the language studies for which there is no department at McGill, such as the Amerindian languages, Creole and other Pidgins, and Australasian languages. In addition to the undergraduate level, there is a master's degree by course and by thesis and a doctoral programme.

Collection development is the responsibility of the Linguistics Bibliographer. Liaison with the Linguistics Department is maintained through the Departmental Coordinator as well as with other faculty members when required. Regular contact with other bibliographers and teaching departments is nurtured through the sharing of relevant review material.

McGill Resources

The Humanities and Social Sciences Library is the major location for the University's linguistics collection. In addition the following McGill libraries hold material of interest to the study of Linguistics.

The Department of Rare Books and Special Collections holds notable documents, especially of Amerindian languages and some important linguistic atlases.

Islamic Studies Library has rich holdings of Arabic, Persian, Turkish and Urdu, and includes a wide array of exotic languages.

Religious Studies Library collects Sanskrit, Pali, Hindi and New Testament Greek materials.

Health Sciences Library contains fundamental documentation on speech pathology

supporting the School for Human Communications Disorders programme.

The Language Laboratory provides taped materials for language learning.

Montreal Neurological Institute Library includes materials on language impairment. Its journal collection includes titles not available elsewhere within the University environs.

Regional Resources

Both the Université de Montréal and the Université du Québec à Montréal have large linguistics collections comprehending many branches of the discipline.

Consortia and Document Delivery

The Center for Research Libraries in Chicago maintains an extensive collection of large monographic series, microfilm collections, serials and theses which are available to the McGill community by virtue of its membership.

Research Libraries Group and OCLC memberships provide access to vast bibliographic databases and to efficient document delivery service based on the holdings of North America's most eminent research collections.

General Collection Guidelines

Languages: The emphasis is on the acquisition of materials in English and French. Materials of major importance in other Western European languages will also be collected.

Date of Publication: Emphasis is on current publications. Retrospective acquisitions are normally only for the replacement of important titles which have deteriorated or disappeared.

Subjects and Levels of Collecting

Collection Levels are derived from the American Library Association's Guide for Written Collection Policy Statements, 2nd. ed., 1996.

P35 Ethnolinguistics 2  
P37 Psycholinguistics (in conjunction with Health Sciences Library) 3b  
  Language Disorders (in conjunction with Health Sciences Library and Education libraries 3b 4
P40 Sociolinguistics 3b  
P51-59 Language Planning i.e. Language Policy 2  
P61 - 85 Study and Teaching in Education Library; For Mass Media see Communications Policy    
  Nonverbal Communication 3a  
P101 - 105 Philosophy and Psychology 3b  
P115 Bilingualism, Multilingualism 3b 4
     Theoretical Aspects 4  
  see also Education Policy    
P118 Language Acquisition (in conjunction with Education and Psychology) 4  
P126 - 128 Linguistic Methodology, Analysis 3a  
P129 - 138 Linguistics (with Education Library) 3b  
P138 Mathematical and Computational Linguistics (mainly in PSEL Collection) 2  
P140 - 143 Historical Linguistics, Diachronics 3a 4
P145 - 149 Descriptive Linguistics, Synchronics 2  
P151 - 163 </> Theory of Grammar 4  
P211 Writing Systems 2  
P214 Phonology 4  
P241 - 287 Morphology 4  
P270 - 299 Syntax 4  
P301 - 324 Stylistics, Composition, Prosody, Metrics, Rhetoric, Translating and Interpreting are collected by McLennan other than for computational aspects which are collected by PSEL. 2  
P325 Semantics 3b  
P331 - 381 Lexicography, dialectology collected by bibliographers for English, French, German, Hispanic etc. studies    
P501 - 769 Indo-European Philology 2  
P901 - 1099 Extinct and Exotic Languages 3a  
PM101 - 7356 Amerindian Languages 3b  
PM61 - 64 Eskimo Family 3a  

Co-ordination and Co-operation

McLennan Reference Department: Recommendations for the purchase of reference works are forwarded to Reference.

Psychology and Education: Psycholinguistics, neurolinguistics, bilingualism and language acquisition are also collected by the Psychology and Education bibliographers since parameters are hard to establish.

Education Library: collects applied linguistics including language teaching and developmental psycholinguistics.

Health Sciences Library: Neurolinguistics and language impairment and its treatment are collected by Health Sciences. Discussions concerning the necessary overlap and duplication of materials in this area are necessary.

Physical Sciences and Engineering Library: collects mathematical and computational linguistics including machine translation.

Plans for Further Development

The concern is to raise the level of the Linguistics collection, particularly serial holdings.

Descriptions of the Collection

Cohen, Martin. Linguistics Cyclical Review: Library Report. December 1993.

Lists of serials and standing orders of Linguistics interest are available from the bibliographer.

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