LC Cataloging Newsline

Online Newsletter of the Cataloging Directorate, Library of Congress

Volume 5, No. 05, ISSN 1066-8829, May 1997

Cataloging Directorate Issues Tactical Plan
Production-Only Month
IFLA Working Group Meetings in Helsinki
AACR2 and Russian Bibliographic Standards
U.S. Almanacs
Seminar on Classification and Subject Headings

Cataloging Directorate Issues Tactical Plan

The Cataloging Directorate has issued its tactical plan for fiscal years 1997 and 1998 for comments by staff and supervisors. The plan was drafted in broad outline by the Cataloging Management Team, consisting of the director, assistant to the director, division chiefs and assistant chiefs, and chiefs of the Serial Record Division, Automation Planning and Liaison Office, and Acquisitions Bibliographic Support Project (see LCCN, v. 4, no. 14, November 1996). The CMT worked closely with the directorate's team leaders and automated operations coordinators to complete the plan, which includes four main goals:

I. Provide quality bibliographic control and physical security of Library materials while meeting goals for processing current receipts and arrearage reduction.

II. Develop staff resources and provide effective personnel management.

III. Increase the efficiency and cost effectiveness of cataloging operations.

IV. Provide national and international leadership in cooperative cataloging and in the development and promotion of cataloging policy and practice.

Each goal includes several objectives, which are further broken down into specific tasks and action items. The plan specifies the unit or individuals who are responsible for completing each action, the estimated timeframe, and any external resources needed. The plan itself focuses on special goals and projects which will be completed by the end of fiscal year 1998 (September 30, 1998). An "Appendix: Ongoing Business" lists all action items which will extend beyond the life of this plan, such as meeting established throughput targets; new training initiatives; participation in the Library's ergonomics and affirmative action programs; and cleanup of existing mainframe files in anticipation of implementing an ILS (integrated library system) before the year 2000. In a new training initiative, the directorate will "actively promote automation literacy." Team leaders are now responsible for ensuring that staff demonstrate the automation skills necessary to use their bibliographic workstations efficiently.

A new element of Goal I is Objective F, "Participate in the development and implementation of the Library's Physical Security Program and other security initiatives." The directorate will comply with the Library's new Security Plan and will also complete an assessment of the internal controls on pipeline materials to mitigate risk in the areas of bibliographic control, inventory control, preservation control, and physical security of the materials.

Goal II shows a heightened emphasis on individual accountability compared to the previous tactical plan that covered fiscal years 1995 and 1996. Goal II also calls for the directorate to reallocate staff and other resources among teams that are understaffed or overstaffed relative to their receipts and arrearage. Goal III includes development and full-scale implementation of the Electronic CIP and Electronic PCN (Preassigned Card Number) Programs, plans to expand and develop online resources for cataloging activities, and preparations to load up to 300,000 bibliographic records for sound recordings, purchased from OCLC, into LC's local system.

As part of Goal IV, the directorate expects to evaluate the desirability of providing SGML markup for cataloging documentation; develop and disseminate a set of conceptual foundations for bibliographic control of digital materials; initiate a Pinyin Task Group to plan for LC's conversion from the Wade-Giles romanization of Chinese to the pinyin system; and participate in IFLA working groups on cataloging theory. Goal IV also includes the directorate's commitment to expand its cooperative cataloging programs and advance the work of the Program for Cooperative Cataloging and the Bibliographic Enrichment Advisory Team initiatives, including BeOnline (see LCCN v. 5, no. 2, February 1997) and possible collaborative arrangements to acquire and distribute TOC (table-of-contents information) in catalog records.

Production-Only Month

Twice each year the Cataloging Directorate and other Library Services units engaged in cataloging activities observe one month that is entirely focused on processing incoming and arrearage materials. During these "production-only" months, every effort is made to avoid distractions from this concentrated focus; for example, meetings are limited to those that deal with matters of a critical nature.

In fiscal year 1997, the first of the production-only months occurred in March. Statistics for that month confirmed the vitality of a concentrated effort. For example, overall the Cataloging Directorate's staff produced 28,298 records that were added to the Library's online catalog and released for distribution to other libraries; by way of contrast the figure for February was 19,103 new records. With the high level of output realized in March, the directorate is able to project that production for the year as a whole will equal or surpass the level realized last year, despite a steady decrease in the number of staff available for cataloging-related assignments.

Within the overall achievement for March, several divisions accomplished objectives that are particularly noteworthy. For example, the Special Materials Cataloging Division reported the following achievements: 3,694 sound recording clearances covered by non-MUMS cataloging; 3,180 rare book clearances with collection-level cataloging of the National Endowment for the Arts small press books collection; and 114,000 items stamped in the project to mark all unmarked Rare Book and Special Collections Division materials with LC ownership stamps. In addition, the Ralph Ellison collection began to be processed by the Rare Book Team.

The Social Sciences Cataloging Division reported that the Political Science, Sociology, and Anthropology Team was able to eliminate its backlog of minimal-level items as well as complete extra amounts of CIP verification, including items from other teams. The Romance Team was able to clear its backlog of Spanish and Portuguese items from its older arrearage. The Law Team was able to reduce its older items by 898 titles. The Business and Economics Team completed 1,595 items while it received 804--almost twice as many completions as receipts. The Central and East European Languages Team saw a twenty-six percent increase in receipts during the first six months of the year and was able to keep up with the increase during March.

Results such as these were also reported by the Arts and Science Cataloging Division (ASCD), the History and Literature Cataloging Division (HLCD), and the Regional and Cooperative Cataloging Division (RCCD). ASCD received 6,834 items and completed 7,447; HLCD received 8,538 and cleared 8,949; RCCD received 6,135 and completed 6,966. Thus, all divisions were able to reduce arrearages during the month. The next production-only month is scheduled for September.

IFLA Working Group Meetings in Helsinki

Barbara Tillett, chief, Cataloging Policy and Support Office (CPSO), represented LC in Helsinki, April 25 to May 1, when she conducted the meeting of the IFLA UBCIM (Universal Bibliographic Control and International MARC) Working Group on Minimal Level Authority Records and ISADN (International Standard Authority Data Number). The group reviewed all comments received from around the world on their draft of data elements to be included in national authority records that will be available as a shared resource, including specifications for data that are either mandatory or optional. The group prepared for its final report draft, which will be ready in time for the IFLA meeting in Copenhagen, August 31-September 5, 1997.

Regarding the ISADN, the working group agreed to defer that proposal for now, as the overhead to administer such a numbering scheme is prohibitive and may not be needed in today's current technological environment. They proposed instead to include the national bibliographic agency's record identifier and, optionally, the text of the other authorized form of heading for an entity when found in an envisioned international authority file.

The working group's first objective is to make authority records available in their respective national formats, then in the future to make such records available in UNIMARC format. In approximately five years it recommends examining the situation to see if the method proposed of using national record ID's is sufficient to link associated authority records for the same entity. It will also explore using the Z39.50 protocol to retrieve and display authority records on the Internet.

The report to be presented at the IFLA conference will provide an introduction on the objectives of the working group, a list of the essential data elements, a glossary, and three appendices: a full matrix of essential and optional data elements with indications of where in each of the represented national formats those data elements appear; recommendations for the Permanent UNIMARC Committee (PUC); and recommendations for the committee revising the IFLA Guidelines for Authority Record Entries (GARE).

AACR2 and Russian Bibliographic Standards

Natalia Montviloff, senior cataloger, History and Literature Cataloging Division, is the author of "An Overview of the Anglo-American Cataloging Code and Comparison between the Code and Russian Bibliographic Standards" that appears in the January/March 1997 issue (vol. 26, no. 1), p. 17-19, International Cataloguing and Bibliographic Control. The paper was first presented at the third international conference "Crimea 96," Foros, Crimea, Ukraine, June 1-6, 1996.

U.S. Almanacs

LC generally will not be creating successive entries for the random and frequent title changes on volumes of 17th-19th century U.S. almanacs in the Library's Rare Book and Special Collections Division. This policy decision will be documented in a future revision of LCRI 21.2C.

Vietnam Seminar on Classification and Subject Headings

Lynn El-Hoshy, senior cataloging policy specialist in the Cataloging Policy and Support Office, and Joan Mitchell, editor of the Dewey Decimal Classification, travelled to Hanoi, Vietnam, in April to speak at the Seminar on Classification and Subject Headings sponsored by the United Board of Christian Higher Education in Asia in conjunction with the Harvard Yenching Institute and Simmons College Graduate School of Library and Information Science. Other speakers were Lois Mai Chan, professor, School of Library and Information Science, University of Kentucky, and Patricia Oyler, professor, Simmons College, who organized the seminar.

The two-day seminar represented the culmination of the Harvard Yenching Institute Scholar Librarian Program in which eighteen Vietnamese librarians attended Simmons College in three groups of six each during the academic years 1993-1996. The purpose of the seminar was to provide information on the roles of classification and subject headings in organizing information and the advantages and disadvantages of using Dewey Decimal Classification, Universal Decimal Classification, Library of Congress Classification, and Library of Congress Subject Headings. In addition to the scholar librarians, the seminar was attended by officials and staff from academic and government libraries and research institutes in Hanoi, Hue, Ho Chi Minh City, and Can Tho.

Following the seminar, the speakers visited the National Center for Science and Technology Information and Documentation in Hanoi to consult with its staff and made presentations on classification and subject headings in the electronic environment to students, faculty, and library staff of the National University of Vietnam. They also gave a one-day workshop on Dewey Decimal Classification and Library of Congress Subject Headings at the National Library of Vietnam for its cataloging staff.

LC CATALOGING NEWSLINE (ISSN 1066-8829) is published irregularly by the Cataloging Directorate, Library Services, Library of Congress, and contains news of cataloging activities throughout the Library of Congress. Editorial Office: Cataloging Policy and Support Office, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. 20540-4305. Editor, Robert M. Hiatt; Editorial Advisory Group: William Anderson, John Byrum, Roselyne Chang, Eugene Kinnaly, Angela Kinney, Albert Kohlmeier, John Mitchell, Susan Morris, Geraldine Ostrove, David Smith, Richard Thaxter, and David Williamson. Address editorial inquiries to the editor at the above address or [email protected] (eMail), (202) 707- 5831 (voice), or (202) 707-6629 (fax).

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