Library of Congress

Cataloging in Publication Program

The Library of Congress > Cataloging in Publication Program > About CIP

Application Process


  • Participating publishers submit electronically
    • A completed CIP Data Application form
    • The full text or, at minimum, core required materials to the Library of Congress for each eligible title
    • A publisher may not submit more than 20 CIP applications at a time.  Once these are processed, publishers may submit more applications, but at no point will more than 20 applications be accepted. Publishers should consider the Preassigned Control Number (PCN) Program if they need to submit more than 20 applications at a time.
  • The CIP Program staff member
    • Reviews the application and text for completeness and eligibility
    • Assigns a Library of Congress Control Number
    • Forwards the application to the appropriate cataloging section
  • The cataloger
    • Completes the descriptive cataloging
    • Assigns subject headings
    • Assigns full Library of Congress and Dewey decimal classification numbers
  • The publisher receives the completed CIP data via email and prints it on the copyright page of the published book.
  • Concurrently, a machine-readable version of the record is distributed to large libraries, bibliographic utilities, and book vendors around the world.


  • The publisher sends a complimentary copy of the published book to the CIP Program. These books are subject to claiming.
  • Upon receipt of the book, a Library staff member
    • Adds other data elements to the catalog record (such as pagination and size)
    • Ensures that the data elements in the record accurately describe the published work. There may be changes in title, subtitle, series, author, or subject.
  • After verification, the machine-readable version of the record is redistributed.
  • The verification stage is very important because
    • If the CIP records are not verified, libraries with automated systems will be required to individually update and verify these records
    • Book vendors are expected to ship the purchased books with catalog card sets that reflect the final verified CIP record