A. Curricular/Research/Programmatic needs
Data Services ensures that the MSU community has access to numeric information needed to support curricular, research, and general information needs. Numeric information includes both data sets and statistical tables. Data sets are sometimes referred to as “raw” data or machine-readable data files and are used in analysis requiring the use of statistical software programs such as SPSS or Stata. Statistics are the human-readable published results of data analysis and may be in either print or electronic format. This collection policy focuses specifically on commercially published sources of numeric information, membership-based research/academic sources, and freely available sources (e.g., government data).
Handbooks for data analysis software programs are also needed to support the use of data.
Data Services crosses disciplinary boundaries, but retains a focus in the social sciences. Data and statistical information is collected across all subject areas.
B. History of the collection/Existing strengths and emphases
Strengths of the collection include a number of large subscription databases which provide multidisciplinary access to statistical datasets in both table and geographic map displays. Although these are considered a collection strength and it is expected that the Libraries’ will maintain subscriptions to databases with multidisciplinary numeric content, individual databases noted here are still subject ongoing collection maintenance and review.
Memberships to data archives providing access to numeric datasets are also considered to be a collection strength.