For the Public
Standard Cataloging Practices
General | Create/Edit Records | Access
Points | Locations | Duplicates | Common
Mistakes | Basics of Millennium Cat
The following practices, procedures and principles are currently accepted
as standard within the Maine InfoNet SOLAR.
- Item records belong exclusively to a single library, which has sole
discretion over such records, subject only to SOLAR cataloging standards.
- Bibliographic records are a resource usually shared by multiple
libraries. Accuracy, consistency, conformance to MARC 21 and
ISBD practice, and completeness are the marks of a high quality record.
- There should be only one bibliographic record for each edition of
a monographic work.
- The Innovative Interfaces online manual ( http://solar.maine.edu/manual )
is known to and used by appropriate members of the library staff. ID
and password are distributed your regular initials and password for getting into the Solar Millennium program. If you need to know these, please send a request to support.maineinfonet.org.
- At least one person regularly checks the SOLAR home page and pages
linked below it for information of use to the local library.
- At least one staff person knows how to Free a Record in Use By the
Creating and Editing Records
- All cataloging starts with a search of the local database. If
a satisfactory bib record exists there already, add your location
to the bib record and attach a single item record representing
the one or more copies of the title held in your collection. If
call numbers differ among multiple copies, prefer the most common
call number, if there is one. Failing that, prefer the call
number of a copy available for interlibrary loan lending.
- If the local database lacks a bib record, seek one of high quality
through whatever cataloging resources to which you have access. The
Z39.50 option built into SOLAR is very helpful in this regard.
- Given a choice, copy cataloging from Library of Congress or OCLC
cataloging is preferred above that from other sources.
- If an 8-digit OCLC number is present in a record (e.g. in an 035)
but is not carried in the 001 field, a new 001 field should be created
and the OCLC number entered into it.
- If a match is found, but the existing bib record is of low quality,
attempt to locate a higher quality bib record and/or to enhance the
quality of the existing record. Overlaying from a record found
with Z39.50, and dragging and dropping fields from other records,
may be done where appropriate.
- Enter appropriate values in every bib record you create for the
fixed fields: Material Type, Language, Skip, Input Library, Initials,
Location and Country.
- Enter appropriate values in every item record you create for the
fixed fields: Location, Item Type, Call Number, Status and Icode2
- If obvious bib record mistakes are found during cataloging, e.g.
misspellings, blatant misuse of MARC tags, they may be corrected.
- Local call # always goes in an item record MARC variable field (092,
090, 096 or 086 for Dewey, LC, NLM and SuDocs respectively). Do
not add call # fields to new or existing bib records. If 09x
fields are present in bib records brought in through Z39.50 or OCLC,
- The second indicator of a 245 Title field specifies the number of
non-filing characters at the beginning of the title, allowing retrieval
to ignore leading articles. For "The Abyss" this
would be "4". The SKIP fixed field of the bib record
must contain the same value as the 2nd indicator of the 245 field. Be
sure that both SKIP and the indicator are set correctly, or searching
may not function correctly.
- A variety of aids to good cataloging practice exist within the GUI
Cat program. Check the Tools menu item. In addition,
valuable MARC reference data can be found at: http://lcweb.loc.gov/marc/
- Derive 245_h, the GMD (General Material Designator) from the more
extensive ISBD list rather than from AACR2.
1. You may add access points (subject headings, author-, series-
and title-added entries) to a bib record, but you should not delete existing
access points unless specifically directed to do so by SOLAR documentation.
2. The following notes fields are indexed for keyword retrieval
and rules for adding access points apply to them as well.
- 500 - GENERAL NOTE
- 505 - FORMATTED CONTENTS NOTE
- 508 - CREATION/PRODUCTION CREDITS NOTE
- 511 - PARTICIPANT OR PERFORMER NOTE
- 518 - DATE/TIME AND PLACE OF AN EVENT NOTE
- 520 - SUMMARY, ETC.
- 521 - TARGET AUDIENCE NOTE
- 534 - ORIGINAL VERSION NOTE
- 538 - SYSTEM DETAILS NOTE
- 546 - LANGUAGE NOTE
3. Sometimes information about a particular library's copies has
research value, or is of general interest to users of the OPAC. Since
item record notes do not appear in the OPAC, a bib level note is required. In
such cases, the cataloger should put the information in a 590 field and
clearly indicate the library-specific applicability of the note.
- 590 Oddwall PL copy includes tipped in autographed photo of Marshall
- 590 Coleridge College copy contains pencil annotations by author of typographic
errors introduced into this edition.
4. Proper designation of subject heading fields is crucial to
support for subject indexing and for maintenance of the authority control
structures in the system. Proper values must be entered in the
second indicator position of 6xx fields: 0 for Library of Congress, 1
for LC Children's Subject Heading Project, 2 for National Library of
Medicine, 4 for local, and 7 for a subject heading source named in the
- Most SOLAR libraries use a single item location, usually 5 characters
in length. A handful use more, for special purposes.
- In bibliographic records, there is only one location per library,
and it is always 3 characters in length. While a utility program
is run periodically to make sure that each bib record carries the
appropriate bib location for all the item records attached to it,
the only way to ensure that locations are set right and that location
scoping works as expected, immediately after editing, is to manually
insert the appropriate value in the bib record whenever you create
a new one, or attach your library's item record(s) to an existing
- Use the "tents" icon to enter and edit multiple location
values in bibliographic records. (A location of "zzzzz" indicates
that no location, or an undefined location, was entered in a record.)
Eliminating Duplicate Bib Records
- If multiple instances of bib records for the same edition are found,
and it is obvious that they are for the same edition of
the same work, the best record should be selected and item records
for all libraries moved to that record.
- In selecting he best bib record, prefer a full and complete LC record
or OCLC record. Failing that, prefer the fullest record available. ISBN
is important as a matching point. If ISBN (MARC 020) is not
in the fullest record, but is present in another, add it to the retained
- Use the "tents" icon to add 3-character location values
to the good bib record corresponding to each of the libraries whose
items were moved. The poorer record should be deleted. If
access points present in a bib record about to be discarded are absent
in the new master record, they should be moved into the new master
record before deleting the old bib record.
- Make a systematic effort to review records identified by the system
administrator as likely to represent false-unique titles within the
database. These are generally records that lack ISBN and LCCN
and therefore could not have merged on any other bib record during
loading. In most cases, the system administrator will have
created at Review File of such records, with a name like "Check
These: XYZ Library Records with no nums".
1. Original cataloging is a last resort. When done, it should
conform to Minerva standards for minimum data elements.
2. Bib records created from scratch must always include at least
the following MARC fields, where information to fill them is available:
- 001 OCLC number
- 008 MARC fixed fields (Use Tools... Expand to edit)
- 010 LCCN
- 020 ISBN
- 100 Personal author
- 110 Corporate author
- 245 Title|bSubtitle|cStatement of Responsibility
- 250 Edition statement
- 260 Place of publication|bPublisher|cDate
- 300 Extent (Pagination)|bOther physical details (e.g. "illus.")
- 600 Personal name subject headings
- 610 Corporate name subject headings
- 650 Topical subject headings
- 651 Geographical subject headings
Common Cataloging Mistakes
Please avoid the following:
Entry of incorrect item or bib location values.
Omission of input library, initials, language, country or material
type in the bib record.
Failure to enter a value for non-filing characters, i.e. leading
articles, in both the 2nd indicator of the 245 field and the SKIP
fixed field. Also, incorrect values -- often resulting from
not counting the space after a leading article.
Use of multiple spaces between a leading article and the second
word of the title.
Incorrectly specifying whether a subject heading is a Library of
Congress Subject Heading (LCSH), a Medical Subject Heading (MESH)
or a local subject heading.
Basic Millennium Cat Skills
Maximize editing windows to better edit record, but close windows
when done.Beware of multiple windows left open.
Remember to save changes. The system will usually ask if you
attempt to exit a record without saving, but it is too easy to say
no and regret it later.
Learn how to drag and drop fields within a record and between records
-- a technique distinctly different from that used in moving item
Close the program when you are through. Leaving it open and
unused for hours at a time will often result in a telecommunications
timeout and you will have to exit and restart the software anyway.
Use the MARC aids available under the Tools menu item to confirm
proper MARC practice in the current bib record.
Use rollover captions to familiarize yourself with icon functions.
- Right click on MARC fields for more information about fields.