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Basic Cataloging and Classification
An Infopeople Online Learning Course (LSSC approved)
Course Instructor: Xiaoli Li
Through practical information and hands-on exercises, you will gain an understanding of cataloging practices, rules, and tools, as well as the nuts and bolts of copy cataloging. The course will cover Resource Description and Access (RDA), the current cataloging rule, the Library of Congress genre/form headings project, and Book Industry Standards and Communications (BISAC) subject headings. MARC format and Dewey Decimal Classification system will be discussed as well. Tips on copy cataloging of newly emerging formats, such as e-books, graphic novels, and downloadable media will be offered.
At the end of four weeks you will feel comfortable with the basics of cataloging, classification, and MARC records and be ready to begin copy cataloging items in a variety of formats.
Course Description: This four-week online course will provide an overview of library cataloging and classification and prepare you to do copy cataloging. Through reading materials, online forums, and individual exercises, you will gain knowledge of basic cataloging rules and tools, commonly used controlled vocabularies, the Dewey Decimal Classification system, and MARC21 format. Applying this knowledge, you will be able to decode MARC bibliographic records and perform basic copy cataloging.
During the course, you will be doing assignments and taking quizzes. You will also participate in discussion forums as part of the online learning process. In addition you will have access to the online tools, such as OCLC WebDewey.
Course Outline: When you log in to the Infopeople online learning site, you will see weekly modules with these topics:
- Week 1: Overview of Cataloging
- Purpose and elements of cataloging
- General cataloging methods and cooperative cataloging
- Introduction to cataloging rule: RDA
- Introduction to controlled vocabularies, such as Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), LC Genre/Form Headings, Book Industry Standards and Communications (BISAC) Subject Headings, etc.
- Week 2: Classification systems and MARC Format
- Introduction to Dewey Decimal Classification and Library of Congress Classification
- What is MARC format?
- Elements of MARC records
- Summary of commonly used MARC fields for bibliographic data
- Week 3: Basic Copy Cataloging for print material
- Tasks of copy cataloging
- Which cataloging record to use?
- Essential MARC fields to verify
- Copy cataloging of print material, including graphic novels
- Week 4: Basic copy cataloging for non-print material
- Copy cataloging of e-books
- Copy cataloging of DVDs
- Copy cataloging of CDs
- Issues and tips on copy cataloging of downloadable media
Time Required: To complete this course, you can expect to spend 2 to 2½ hours per week, with options for further study and application. You can work on each module at your own pace, at any hour of the day or night. However, it is recommended that you complete each week's assignments within that week to stay in sync with other learners.
Who Should Take This Course: Anyone from the library community with an interest in learning the basics of library cataloging and classification. This course provides Library Support Staff Certification credits for the Cataloging and Classification competency set. It is particularly focused on the needs of public library staff newly assigned to copy cataloging tasks. The instructor will provide more extensive work with the Dewey Decimal Classification system than with alternatives, but Library of Congress and other classification systems currently in use will be discussed as well.
Online Learning Details and System Requirements may be found at: infopeople.org/training/online_learning_details.
After the official end date for the course, the instructor will be available for limited consultation and support for two more weeks, and the course material will stay up for an additional two weeks after that. These extra weeks give those who have fallen behind time to work independently to complete the course.