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General Collections

Update on Collections Ordering - November 2021

As the Libraries continue to progress through the Pandemic Recovery plan, personnel in Acquisitions, Continuing Resources and Data Services (ACRDS) and Cataloging and Metadata Services (CMS) are working through the backlog of materials that accumulated from March 2020-July 2021. As such, the Libraries will not be accepting gifts-in-kind for the general collections until further notice. Gifts to Special Collections will be accepted through the usual process.

The Libraries have resumed approval plan shipments and are gradually expanding ordering to include physical resources (monographs, CDs, DVDs, etc.). Orders supporting Course Reserves remain our first priority, followed by urgent faculty requests such as those to support a time-sensitive grant application or to meet a publication deadline. These are followed by orders for electronic resources and other formats. All faculty requests for course support should be placed via the Course Reserves request form.

For questions regarding ordering, please contact your subject specialist or Maggie Saponaro, Director of Collection Development Strategies ( For questions regarding donations of gift materials, please contact Dan Mack, Associate Dean for Collections (

Information on General Collections

The collections of the University Libraries are a valuable state asset that support research, teaching and learning at the University of Maryland.

Collections vary in format and include materials owned by the University Libraries as well as those licensed for the academic community.

  • Volumes: 6.3 million (includes electronic books)
  • E-journal titles: 435,081
  • E-books:  3.93 million
  • Databases: 440

Over 77 percent of our collections are purchased in electronic form. The national average for research libraries is 62 percent.

Increasingly print-based collections are supplemented by online libraries such as the HathiTrust, a partnership of more than 50 major research institutions and libraries creating a shared digital library to preserve the cultural record and make it accessible.

In addition to print and electronic resources, the Libraries’ collection includes over 25,000 media items in DVD, VHS, and older formats including 16mm film and U-Matic and Films@UM -  the University of Maryland's own streaming video collection. Films@UM is part of Digital Collections with over 800 digital films and covers a variety of subjects. These include documentaries, public television performances, taped performances, and feature films. There are also many streaming video collections available.