General policies and principles for the Library's collections are stated in the General Collection Development Policy.

The collection supports the UCSB’s Department of Anthropology curriculum through the Doctoral level, and all faculty and student research and scholarship.

Academic Department/Program Description

The Department has a strong focus in cultural anthropology (including archaeology), and biological anthropology with graduate specializations in archaeology (including bioarchaeology), sociocultural anthropology, and integrative anthropological sciences.



The primary subjects collected include all aspects of anthropology, archaeology as well as interdisciplinary branches such bioarchaeology, archaeobotany, zooarchaeology and others.


Materials collected are primarily in English or English translation. Works written in other languages have high priority and are acquired depending on the availability of the items and research needs of the faculty members.

Chronological limits

There are no chronological limits applicable for this collection.

Date of publication

Publications from the 20thcentury to the present are collected primarily.

Geographical areas

Primary areas collected include Mesoamerica, United States, Asia-Pacific, Egypt, and South America.  However, materials from other regions are collected if relevant to department. 

Types of materials

Materials are collected with an emphasis on research monographs and academic journals. North American university press titles are received on approval, and other materials are selected individually. Subscriptions to journals are considered in consultation with faculty. Hard copy (paper) publications of monographs are emphasized with an occasional electronic book. To maximize limited resources, most journals will NOT be available in more than one format; in general, electronic versions are preferred, so long as they have reliable and perpetual access.


Materials are collected in all formats. Electronic is preferred for journals if print is not available. E-books are purchased if requested as well as for anthologies, edited volumes and reference materials.  Feature films, documentaries are purchased upon request.

Reprints are generally not acquired unless augmented, revised, or containing some other new intellectual material. Textbooks are not actively selected.

Other resources

UCSB collections that support the Anthropology Department benefit heavily from the library’s participation in serials and research databases that are licensed by UC’s California Digital Library and funded by the UC campuses

Related Collection Development Policies

Subject librarian: gerardo “gary” colmenar
Policy last updated: June 2015