Michigan State University

Collection Development Policy Statement: Botanical and Plant Sciences

Updated July 27, 2023

Purpose or Scope of Collection

A. Curricular, Research and Programmatic Needs:

The MSU Libraries support the research and teaching needs of faculty and students through the doctoral level in the plant sciences. MSU offers degrees in plant biology through the College of Natural Science. In addition, this collection supports the research needs of the W. J. Beal Botanical Garden, the MSU Herbarium, the MSU-DOE Plant Research Laboratory, and W. K. Kellogg Biological Research Station.

The Department of Plant Biology is highly active and successful in securing grant funding for research in all areas of plant science research. Research areas, topics, and methodologies in the department vary widely, from genomics and cellular-level research to Michigan's native and non-native flora and their pollinators.

Research data collection and needs are both quantitative and qualitative .

B. History of the Collection / Existing Strengths and Emphases

Michigan Agricultural College was established in 1855, and soon after the Department of Botany and Vegetable Physiology in 1859. The disciplines have evolved and continues the study of plant science and pathology. Emphasized areas are basic plant science; structural botany; local, regional and international studies of flora and individual plant species; systematics; plant communities; plant evolution and physiological ecology. All of the related collections are considered to be historical collections. Ethnobotany is also studied in a multidisciplinary context.