LC Cataloging Newsline

Online Newsletter of the Cataloging Directorate, Library of Congress

Volume 6, No. 4, ISSN 1066-8829, April 1998

Winston Tabb to Receive Melvil Dewey Medal
Computer Files
PCC SACO Workshops at the Library of Congress
PCC Policy on Classification Numbers in BIBCO Records

Winston Tabb to Receive Melvil Dewey Medal

Associate Librarian for Library Services Winston Tabb will receive the Melvil Dewey Medal and Citation for recent creative professional achievement of a high order at the American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference in Washington, D.C., this summer. He learned of the award in a letter dated January 27, 1998, from Valerie J. Wilford, executive director of the Alliance Library System, Pekin, Ill., and chair of the 1998 Melvil Dewey Award Jury. The letter praised his long service in ALA and the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), as well as his "vision, leadership, and determination in establishing the Program for Cooperative Cataloging," for which the Library of Congress is the secretariat.

Tabb joined the Library of Congress as an intern in 1972 after earning a bachelor's degree magna cum laude from Oklahoma Baptist University, a master's degree in American literature from Harvard University, and a master's degree in library science from Simmons College. He is also a U.S. Army veteran. His first permanent assignment at LC was in the Congressional Reference Division of the Congressional Research Service. From 1978 to 1989 he served as chief of the former General Reading Rooms Division, the Information and Reference Division in the Copyright Office, and the Loan Division. In 1988 he was vice-chair of Librarian James H. Billington's Management and Planning Committee, which designed the 1989 reorganization of the Library into service units. From 1989 to 1992, Tabb served as acting deputy librarian of Congress before becoming associate librarian for collections services in December 1991. When 51 divisions were realigned to form Library Services in November 1995, Tabb became responsible for the largest service unit in the Library, with approximately half of LC's employees. He is a member of the IFLA Professional Board and chairs IFLA's National Libraries Section and Coordinating Board for the Division of General Research Libraries. He is a member of the boards of the Council on Library and Information Resources and the Soros Foundation-Open Society Institute Network Library Program and is the LC representative to the AACR Committee of Principals. Tabb also serves on the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science and the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. He will receive an engraved medal and a citation of achievement at the ALA Awards Ceremony in the Coolidge Auditorium on the evening of June 30, just before the inauguration of incoming ALA president Ann K. Symons, which will occur that evening in the Great Hall of the Library's Thomas Jefferson Building.

Computer Files

At the 1998 American Library Association (ALA) Midwinter Meeting, the challenges and problems of cataloging computer files were discussed--librarians are struggling with access to remote electronic resources. The challenge begins with selection: how should a library select online resources for access and for cataloging. This question must be considered carefully, because of the high cost of cataloging. When cataloging these resources, one critical question is how to represent library holdings and another is how to maintain and update URLs in the 856 field. Institutions are trying various methods of dealing with each of these challenges with varying degrees of success.

Descriptive cataloging practices for computer files continue to change. The Research Libraries Group (RLG) is working on a proposal to expand the 007 field. The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) Preservation Working Group on Digital Archiving issued a draft progress report in May 1997. ALA's Committee on Cataloging : Description and Access (CC:DA) has established a task force to study the newly published International Standard Bibliographic Description : Electronic Resources (ISBD(ER)) and to recommend changes and additions.

The ALCTS/CCS/Subject Analysis Committee (SAC) has recently established two subcommittees to study subject cataloging of computer files with emphasis on online electronic resources: Subcommittee on Metadata and Subject Analysis and Subcommittee on Metadata and Classification. In its final report the SAC Subcommittee on Subject Access to Computer Files recommended that the outdated 1986 ALA guidelines no longer be used.

The Cataloging in Publication (CIP) Program for computer files, which averages forty titles a year, was discussed at ALA. During the CIP Advisory Board meeting the members discussed the cost of maintaining this part of the program, the inefficiencies incurred by the low volume and the factors in either expansion or change. Catalogers from school and public libraries voiced their support for expansion as they would benefit from having more cataloging copy available.

News from LC at Midwinter included the following announcements: Subject Cataloging Manual: Subject Headings instruction sheet H-1520, Databases, was rewritten and issued in August 1997. "Computer games" has been added to Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) as a form subdivision. The Draft Interim Guidelines for Cataloging Electronic Resources, as a unit of LC's Descriptive Cataloging Manual is used for cataloging electronic resources within LC. The Guidelines for Distinguishing Cartographic Materials on Computer File Carriers distinguishes those computer files that should be cataloged as maps (leader/06 code e) from those cataloged as computer files (Leader/06 code m). LC has now implemented copy cataloging for computer files, taking existing records from the bibliographic utilities. The Computer Files/Microforms Team of the Special Materials Cataloging Division (SMCD) has begun experimenting with the draft Computer Files Copy Cataloging Manual.

PCC SACO Workshops at the Library of Congress

Library of Congress staff will present three workshops Thursday, June 25, 1998, in support of SACO, the Subject Authority Cooperative Program of the Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC).

The workshops are open at no charge on a first-come-first-served basis to all catalogers interested in proposing new headings and changes to LCSH. Training materials will be provided at the workshop. These workshops will enable participants to formulate new subject headings and propose changes to existing headings. In 1997, SACO participants contributed approximately twenty percent of the subject headings added to LCSH.

The sessions will consist of a morning basic SACO workshop (Workshop A) and concurrent afternoon sessions (Workshops B and C) covering specific types of subject headings.

Workshop A: Basic SACO Workshop, 9:00 am-12:30 pm: How to Propose Subject Headings for LCSH; Instructor: Lynn M. El-Hoshy, senior cataloging policy specialist; Library of Congress, James Madison Building, Pickford Theater, LM-301; maximum registration: 60.

El-Hoshy will cover how to prepare subject heading proposals using SACO forms, including performing authority research, constructing a subject heading, and fitting it into the hierarchy of the subject authority file, based on appropriate instruction sheets from the Subject Cataloging Manual. This basic workshop is a repeat of a session offered in Feb. 1997 at ALA Midwinter, and serves as a foundation for the more advanced workshops listed below.

Workshop B: Advanced SACO Workshop, 1:30-4:30 pm: Proposing Geographic Name and Historic Event Subject Headings for LCSH; Instructor: Lynn El-Hoshy; Library of Congress, James Madison Building, Pickford Theater, LM-301; maximum registration: 60

El-Hoshy will demonstrate how to propose subject headings in the special areas of geographic names and historic events, including wars and time periods, based on appropriate instruction sheets from the Subject Cataloging Manual: Subject Headings. Participants will benefit from attendance at a basic workshop (e.g., June 25 Workshop A or 1997 Midwinter SACO workshop) on LCSH proposals or from prior SACO experience.

Workshop C: Advanced SACO Workshop, 1:30-4:30 pm: Proposing Names of Languages and Related Literature Subject Headings for LCSH; Instructor: Milicent Wewerka, senior cataloging policy specialist; Library of Congress, James Madison Building, LM-654, Classroom A-B; maximum registration: 25.

Wewerka will demonstrate how to propose subject headings for names of languages and related literature headings, including appropriate reference sources to be consulted and reference hierarchies for headings. Participants will benefit from attendance at a basic workshop (e.g., June 25 Workshop A or 1997 Midwinter SACO workshop) on LCSH proposals or from prior SACO experience.

The Library will return a simple confirmation and Metro travel instructions to attendees registered by May 15 as described below.

  1. Register through the SACO workshop registration form on the PCC home page: or
  2. Register through email to [email protected], Carolyn Sturtevant, Cooperative Cataloging Team.

Please include the following information:

For which workshop(s) registering

Workshop A: Basic SACO workshop A


Workshop B: Advanced (geographic names and historic events)


Workshop C: Advanced (names of languages and related literatures)

If registering for an afternoon workshop, indicate if attendance at the other workshop is acceptable should the workshop for which registering be full.

Please include name, professional title, institution, mailing address, telephone number, fax number, and Internet address.

Please specify if accommodations for compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act are required.

PCC Policy on Classification Numbers in BIBCO Records

The Program for Cooperative Cataloging Standing Committee on Standards has recently issued a policy statement on the use of classification numbers in BIBCO full and core-level records. A class number from an established classification system supported in the USMARC format is a required element according to the general provisions of the books core record standard. Allowable classification schemes can be used from any source specifically identified in the USMARC format (e.g., fields 050, 060, 070, 080, 082, 084, 086) or taken from the USMARC Code List for Relators, Sources, Description Conventions, 1993.

The purpose for requiring a classification number is to provide classified access and to provide the basis for building a call number through one of the classification systems supported by the USMARC format.

Individual core standards address requirements for providing classification for each format. These same standards must also be adhered to at the full-level. However, optionally, a class number may be supplied in records for materials in which the standard does not require it. In those instances where a PCC standard requires that a class number be supplied and a BIBCO participant does not classify that type of material, the library must either label those records as non-PCC or supply a number from one of the valid classification schemes. For BIBCO libraries using LC classification, a class number which adheres to LC practice that includes the data representing the topic must be assigned.

The complete text of the policy statement can be found through the PCC home page at URL:

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