Cataloging Fundamentals (online learning course)
October 10, 2006 - November 20, 2006
Cataloging Fundamentals is a beginning course for anyone who is new to library cataloging, as well as a MARC-demystifying update for anyone who has felt left behind since the card catalog disappeared and computers entered the library. Have you ever wondered:
- What are those strange codes in a MARC record, and can they be deleted if they don't make sense?
- When is it OK to make up subject headings?
- Why are MARC tags different for different items?
- Where does the added information in copy cataloging actually go, anyway?
This course will bring you up to date on MARC cataloging terms and displays, and will explain how automated systems use this information. At the end of six weeks you will see your library's MARC records with a new understanding. You might even get inspired to tackle those piles of uncataloged items with gusto!
Workshop Description: This six-week online learning course will provide an overview of library cataloging. Through individual and group exercises, you will trace the evolution of MARC and apply this knowledge to the types of problems that come up in copy and original cataloging. During the course, students will use the web to complete assignments on assigning MARC formats, tags, and subject headings to everyday materials. Participants will work on exercises and quizzes, and will also take part in online discussion forums as part of the learning process. The instructor will provide sample records, templates, cheat sheets and a bibliography, as well as practical cataloging tips that can be applied right away.
Note: Cataloging Fundamentals focuses on the MARC 21 record display and bibliographic standards. Neither integrated system vendor-specific displays nor OCLC-specific displays and member cataloging requirements will be discussed
Preliminary Course Outline: Using your web browser and your Internet connection, you will log in to the Infopeople online learning site and complete the following learning modules:
- Module One: General Concepts
- General cataloging methods and terminology
- Cataloging conventions and practices for a card catalog
- Classification systems
- Module Two: Retrospective Conversion
from a Catalog Card to MARC
- Components of a MARC record
- Common fixed and variable tags
- Module Three: Formats
- Eight MARC format categories
- Tags for each format
- Assigning one format to many items
- Module Four: Copy Cataloging
- Copy cataloging defined
- What to look for in the bib record when copy cataloging
- Problems in copy cataloging and how to avoid them
- Module Five: Original Cataloging
- Resources for original cataloging
- Cataloging for staff, users, and searching capabilities
- Required tags to catalog for each format
- Module Six: Library of Congress
- Main headings and sub-headings
Pre-workshop assignment: : The sixth week of the workshop concerns Library of Congress Subject Headings. Participants should try to obtain either an online or print version of one of the following: LCSH Free Floating Subdivisions, Subject Cataloging Manual, Cataloger's Desktop.
Online Learning Details: This six-week course will be taught online using the web. When you register, you will receive a registration confirmation, which will include the URL to get to the course, as well as a username and password.
Every student proceeds through the online learning modules at his or her own pace. However, students should expect to commit to spending a minimum of 2 to 2 ½ hours per week on this course in order to be successful. You can work on each module at your own pace, at any hour of the day or night. However, you will be expected to log in to the course each week to do that week's assignment. We ask that you log in sometime during the first week of the course to begin the course work.
Your instructor will be available for limited consultation support for two weeks after the official end date of a course, and the course material will stay up for an additional two weeks after that, to give those who have fallen behind time to work independently on the course. However, you will be expected to accomplish the majority of the course in synchronization with your peers during the first six weeks.
Who Should Take This Course: Anyone from the library community with an interest in understanding MARC cataloging and how computer systems use components of the MARC record for display and searching. This course is suitable for support staff who are assigned catalog tasks, as well as for librarians and managers who need to update their understanding of catalog infrastructure. While this course is designed for those who have had no formal instruction in cataloging, it is also a useful refresher for staff whose training was some time ago.
Prerequisites: This course is taught over the web. You must:
- Have an Internet connection and Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher (some of the quiz functions do not work properly in Netscape).
- Be able to save Microsoft Word .docs or Adobe .pdf files to your computer and print them out. (For .doc files, a free Word Viewer is available at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/search.aspx?displaylang=en. Search for "Word Viewer." For .pdf files, a free Adobe Acrobat Reader is available at http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/main.html).
- Be comfortable navigating on the web and navigating back and forward on a website that uses frames.
System Requirements: The online learning product that Infopeople uses is called Angel. The following are minimum system requirements for using Angel. You will need access to a computer that has at least these specifications to participate in an online course:
- Internet Explorer 6.0 and above, Netscape 7.1 and above, or Firefox 1.5 and above
- Mozilla 1.4 and above (which is the same engine as Netscape 7.1), Safari 2.0 and above, or Firefox 1.5 and above
- OS X and above (OS 9 will NOT work with our online learning product)
If you are not comfortable with any of the above, please consider taking this course with a colleague who does meet these requirements.
Course Start: This 6-week-long online learning course starts on October 10, 2006.