Collection Development Policies

USC Libraries Special Collections helps advance the research, instructional, and service mission of the University of Southern California and the USC Libraries by building, organizing, preserving, and providing access to and information about primary sources and interdisciplinary and multilingual collections of distinction, including but not limited to rare books and archival collections.


Special Collections seeks to collect materials that:

  • Help our students to develop as engaged world citizens by seeking materials representing diverse peoples and fields of study and that engage a diverse University community.
  • Support and encourage the academic and research endeavors of faculty, students, and staff in all subjects and disciplines.
  • Support class instruction.
  • Are of critical importance in fields of study relevant to our faculty and students.
  • Encourage critical thinking and support primary source literacy in order to build a community of critical consumers of information.
  • Reflect the diversity of our campus community and our multicultural region.


Special Collections collects in specific areas. These include: