Online Newsletter of the Cataloging Directorate

Library of Congress Volume 9, no. 3 ISSN 1066-8829 April 2001


PCC Action-Packed ALA
Hong Kong University of Technology Joins CONSER
Decimal Classification Editorial Policy Committee


The first ALA Midwinter Meeting of the new millennium held in Washington, D.C., in January proved to be a full one for PCC members. To the usual complement of meetings were added several training venues and visioning exercises for the future.

Training and Education

In the days preceding the ALA weekend, PCC participants took up several offers of cataloging training given at the Library of Congress. On Friday, over sixty people attended SACO courses in creating and proposing new subject headings in the fields of religion and of economics and social sciences.

Additionally, LC catalogers actively engaged in PCC training efforts conducted training seminars for volunteer trainers in two separate programs. CONSER gave a train-the-trainer workshop for a new SCCTP serial holdings course on Thursday and Friday, while three members of the Cooperative Cataloging Team spent Friday with volunteers wishing to become NACO trainers.



The BIBCO-at-Large meeting heard reports from the standing committees and several task groups, covered separately in this article under the appropriate standing committee. The BIBCO Working Group on Series Numbering issued its final report, which had been approved by the PCC Policy Committee at its November 1999 meeting. The analysis of its survey, and final recommendations, may be found at URL [April 2001].

In response to the report from the Standing Committee on Training on the preparation of a BIBCO participants' manual, participants expressed interest in having it mirror the CONSER documentation. The decision was made to follow the CONSER model, but not include the same degree of detail.

David Banush (Cornell University) gave the attendees a brief overview of his proposal to conduct a research study on cataloger attitudes toward the core-level record. His study will be funded by Cornell University and will begin soon. The study will run for twenty-three weeks. The full text of the Banush proposal will also be posted to the BIBCO web site at URL // [April 2001].

The final portion of the BIBCO-at-large meeting consisted of a visioning exercise for BIBCO and the future challenges that the program faces in maintaining its viability. This exercise was led by Jennifer Bowen (Eastman School of Music). The impetus for the exercise came from both the PCC Policy Committee as well as from OCLC. In its move to a relational database, OCLC is querying users about features they would like to see included in programming enhancements.

More details may be found on the BIBCO web site at URL // [April 2001].

Standing Committees


The Standing Committee on Automation (SCA) dealt with a large number of issues at ALA. The Task Group on Full Text Journals in Aggregator Databases announced that Bell and Howell has produced a MARC record set according to the specifications prepared last year by the task group, based on CONSER records, for the titles in its ProQuest product. The Gale Group is also developing a record set for its InfoTrac Web periodical products.

The final report of the Task Group on Automated Classification was reviewed and approved. The task group found that "substantial opportunities exist for library software vendors to enhance their products to assist with the generation of classification and call numbers." The SCA agreed that the next step is making integrated library system vendors aware of the task group's recommendations.

A first meeting was held on the SCA's newest initiative: the Task Group on OCLC Batch Processing. The task group's charge is available on the PCC SCA Web site. At its meeting, the group agreed that its next step will be to conduct a brief survey to evaluate the batch loading needs of PCC libraries.

More information may be found at the PCC website at URL // [April 2001].


The Standing Committee on Standards (SCS) distributed the recommendations put forth by the Task Groups on Audiovisuals, on Cross References, and on the 042 Field. An interim report from the Task Group on Multiple Manifestations has been placed on the committee's Web site.

New task groups being formed include a joint task group with the Standing Committee on Training on PCC approaches to dealing with the AACR2 revisions on integrating resources; a task group on conference publications; a task group on the function of the authority file; and a task group on displaying superseded subject headings.

More information may be found at URL // [April 2001].


The Standing Committee on Training is following up on the results of several surveys conducted last year. The Task Group on NACO Continuing Education is developing a curriculum for currently active NACO catalogers. The SACO participants manual has nearly been completed, with hopes for its publication in time for the ALA Annual Conference. The BIBCO participants manual will be loosely based on the _CONSER Editing Guide_ (CEG), as far as organization goes, but will not go into the CEG's depth of detail. The joint Task Group on Implementing Integrating Resources (with the SCS) will operate on a short schedule, with a report due by April for discussion at the May meetings of the CONSER and BIBCO Operations Committees. Also, joint interests in cataloger education with ALCTS have led to the appointment of Carol Hixson, chair of this standing committee, as the PCC liaison to that body.

More information may be found at URL // [April 2001].

PCC Participants Meeting

At the now traditional Sunday evening general meeting for PCC members and other interested parties, outgoing chair Marjorie Bloss gave a review of the previous six months' activities, followed by reports from the standing committee chairs. The Library of Congress director for cataloging, Beacher Wiggins, gave an overview of the recent Bicentennial Conference on Bibliographic Control for the New Millennium. He discussed the eleven sets of recommendations of the conference, especially highlighting those in which the PCC could most profitably participate. Wiggins' presentation led directly into the reports of the "visioning exercises" held earlier that day at the CONSER-at-Large and BIBCO-at-Large meetings. Sally Sinn and Jennifer Bowen, respective facilitators of those meetings, presented the results from each session. A summary of the meeting may be found at URL [April 2001].


A train-the-trainer session, a task force discussion on publication patterns, and a visioning exercise highlighted the meetings in Washington. On Thursday and Friday, Jan. 11-12, a train-the-trainer session was held for the Serial Holdings Workshop, the second course developed by the Serials Cataloging Cooperative Training Program (SCCTP). Course developers Frieda Rosenberg (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill) and Thom Saudargas (College Center for Library Automation) were in attendance along with twenty-eight other participants from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Cathy Kellum (OCLC) provided training tips and Sharon Wiles-Young (Lehigh University) gave a demonstration of the course. Course materials will be available soon from the Cataloging Distribution Service in the form of PDF files. For more information on the course and on SCCTP, see the SCCTP web site at URL // [April 2001].

Publication patterns were the focus of discussion on Saturday afternoon at the meeting of the CONSER Task Force on Publication Patterns and Holdings. Sally Sinn (National Agricultural Library) chaired the meeting, which focused on finding ways to increase contributions from existing and new participants, as well as other sources for data loads. Rich Greene (OCLC) gave a progress report on the Harvard load, which will add holdings and some pattern data to 25,000-30,000 CONSER records. The ALA Annual Conference will feature a LITA-sponsored preconference meeting on the _MARC 21 Format for Holdings Data_, which is being organized by task force member Linda Miller (LC). A special meeting for participants in the CONSER pattern initiative will be held. More information and a complete summary of the meeting is available at URL // [April 2001].

Early Sunday morning, CONSER members met at the CONSER-at- Large meeting and participated in a visioning exercise. Sinn led the group in developing a "wish list" for OCLC of enhancements that CONSER would like as OCLC begins to develop a relational database. Most of the items related to linking to various types of databases and records, and to maintenance enhancements, including the ability to batchload maintenance transactions. A long-range wish was expressed in terms of the "virtual record," which would reside on OCLC and be pointed to rather than downloaded, so that the latest version would always be viewed in library OPACs. The second part of the exercise involved an analysis of the strengths and weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Among the successes were CONSER documentation and training efforts that have made CONSER standards the norm for many libraries outside the program. Also cited was CONSER's willingness to tackle the difficult issues and its ability to effect change in a timely manner. Opportunities for growth and change included a potentially broadened scope of the program to encompass more types of resources and records, and growth in membership, both nationally and internationally. The fact that the master CONSER record resides in a single database was cited as a strength and as a weakness. A suggestion for further activity involved using CONSER's expertise to influence publishers and vendors in the area of serials publishing and control. The complete results are available at URL // [April 2001].


The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology Library (HKUST) has become the first CONSER Program member from Asia. Nancy Yu (LC) and Steve Shadle (University of Washington) provided CONSER training in Hong Kong at the beginning of December. HKUST currently receives over 7,000 titles, half of which are in electronic format. HKUST will participate as a full level CONSER member, cataloging serials in print, microform, and electronic formats in Chinese, English, and other languages. Louisa Kwok will represent HKUST at the policy level; Ada Shuk-Man Cheung will be the CONSER Operations representative.


The Decimal Classification Editorial Policy Committee (EPC) held its Meeting 115 at the Library of Congress Nov. 29 - Dec. 1, 2000. The committee elected Lucy Evans (British Library) vice- chair, replacing Pamela Brown (Suburban Library System, West/Southwest Chicago). Brown and David Balatti (National Library of Canada) completed their EPC service. Arlene Taylor (University of Pittsburgh), successor to Elaine Svenonius (UCLA) as the committee's library educator, attended her first EPC meeting. Jolande Goldberg, the Library of Congress's law classification specialist, joined the committee for the discussions on international law in the Dewey 340 schedule.

Review of schedules for DDC Edition 22, to be published in 2003, was the committee's primary business. EPC re-approved, subject to further minor revision, the three schedules that had been submitted to outside groups for review and comment: 004-006 Data processing, Computer science; 305-306 Social groups; and 340 Law. 510 Mathematics was provisionally approved, subject to review by groups in the mathematics community at its Midwinter Meeting, ALA's Subject Analysis Committee convened a subcommittee to review the schedule. Other Edition 22 schedules approved were 010 Bibliography; 200 Religion; 350 Public administration and Military science; 380 Commerce, communications, transportation (except 381 Internal commerce); 390 Customs, etiquette, folklore; 616-618 Diseases and branches of medicine; and 640 Home and family management.

The committee approved several revisions to smaller segments of the classification for proximate implementation: Table 2 481- 484 Norway; history numbers for 948 Scandinavia and 949.12 Iceland; revisions in 400 and 800 to Scandinavian language and literature numbers; and 419 Sign language. Finally, EPC approved for Abridged Edition 14 (scheduled for publication in 2004): 320 Political science; 400 Language, with its associated Table 4; 540 Chemistry; 630 Agriculture; and 800 Literature, with its associated Table 3.

EPC will hold its Meeting 116 at the Library May 9 - 11, 2001.

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Comments : [email protected] 04/30/01