Compiled by the Library of Congress
Serial Record Division
This annual report of the CONSER (Cooperative Online Serials) Program covers the fiscal year, July 1994 through June 1995. The report contains two sections that follow this introduction: "General Report" of the collective activities of the Program, and "Member Reports" that highlight activities of individual CONSER participants relating to serial cataloging. The "General Report" is further subdivided into "Achievements" that includes significant accomplishments for the year and "Activities" that comprise ongoing efforts.
Linda Bartley retired from the Library of Congress in November 1994 after having served for 12 years as CONSER Operations Coordinator. Jean Hirons (LC) has assumed Bartley's duties as acting coordinator for the Program in what has proved to be a very full and productive year for CONSER. Bill Anderson continues to serve as CONSER Specialist at the Library of Congress. Martha Hruska (Florida) concluded her term as chair of the Policy and Executive Committees in December 1994 and Linda West (Harvard) was elected to be the Policy and Executive Committee chair for 1995-1996. In March 1995 West announced her departure from Harvard to serve as the Director of Member Support and Services for the Research Libraries Group. Sue Phillips (University of Texas at Austin) was elected to serve out the remainder of the two-year term.
Six new CONSER committee representatives replaced colleagues, a number of whom had served for many years. CONSER strengthened its relationship with the Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC) with the addition of Sarah Thomas (LC) as the CONSER Councilor for the PCC. Two other CONSER councilors were newly assigned by the British Library and the National Library of Australia to assist the Program in Policy Committee meetings. Also, Kristin Lindlan (Washington) was elected by the Operations Committee to serve as an Operational representative to the 1995 Policy Committee meeting.
The CONSER Operations Committee gathered for two meetings in the fiscal year--November 1994 and May 1995--with both meetings held at the Library of Congress. The Policy Committee met at the ALA mid-winter conference in February 1995 to begin preparing for its fall 1995 meeting, and initiated a major Program review of membership categories and governance structure. "At-large" meetings, held during the mid-winter (February) and annual (June) conferences of the ALA, continued to be valuable for the communication and shared discussion of issues between CONSER representatives and other interested parties. During the fiscal year two task forces concluded their work--Core Elements and Maintenance of CONSER Records--and two task forces were newly established--Conference Publications and AACR Review.
CONSER members conducted workshops on format integration, serial computer files, and serials cataloging at the April 1995 ALCTS Serial Institute in Atlanta, with another scheduled to take place October 1995 in San Francisco. Hirons presented a "CONSER Live" session at the 1995 NASIG meeting that offered a wide range of information about the Program to a diverse group of serials librarians. Several articles about CONSER were published during the year as well. Anderson's "History of the CONSER Program (1986-1994)" appeared in Serials Review in 1995. "Tools of the Serials Trade" by Randall, Case, and Widzinski, published in Serials Review in 1994, offers a review of the CONSER database and CDMARC Serials. Jim Cole wrote a review of the CONSER Cataloging Manual for The Serials Librarian that was also issued in 1994.
Record requirements and the core record, electronic resources, program documentation, and several new initiatives created an active agenda for the year. Membership developments continued with the American Theological Library Association and New York Public Library reaching independent status as fully trained CONSER members. The University of Cincinnati Medical Center applied in early 1995 for affiliate membership status. The National Register of Microform Masters' Project, operating as a short-term CONSER-affiliated project, is managed by the Association of Research Libraries with OCLC serving as project contractor. The Project became active in the summer of 1994 and reached its full production phase in early 1995, processing records for NYPL, Harvard, and LC. NRMM is scheduled to convert over 25,000 records before its conclusion in FY96. In June 1995, CONSER membership stood at: four national, fifteen full, two associate, and three affiliate members.
The CONSER Core Elements Task Force concluded its work as the core-level record for serials in print was ratified by CONSER members in late 1994. New record requirements for full- and minimal-level CONSER records were also established along with the development of the core record. In defining the core record, CONSER members reexamined the serial record to identify those elements that they considered to be essential and then in turn identified the basic relationships between minimal-, core-, and full-level records. Development of the core record follows a new approach to record requirements that involves catalogers' judgment and authority requirements along with the required bibliographic elements. CONSER followed a similar approach to developing the core record as was done by the PCC in its effort to establish core records for several bibliographic formats. Underlying the debate in CONSER was a desire to retain the high quality of the CONSER database while defining a new level of cataloging that would facilitate the efficient creation of CONSER records
The Core Elements Task Force, chaired by Brian Schottlaender (UCLA), was charged in late 1992 with evaluating the nature of the CONSER record and given the task of proposing a core record for serials in early 1994. In May 1994, the Policy Committee discussed the task force proposal and many of the related issues including the number of record levels to be defined for CONSER, and how to ensure clear distinctions between record levels. The serials and cataloging communities were queried in October 1994 as the task force proposal was distributed to numerous listservs. The CONSER Operations Committee met in November for the final review of the list of data elements and a description of the requirements for full-, core-, and minimal-level CONSER records.
Whether to operate with two or three record levels was a difficult issue to resolve since full- and minimal-level records have well served CONSER members for almost 20 years. It was decided to retain yet modify existing record levels with the development of the core-level record, and maintain clear distinctions between the three record levels. The task force proposal established the same set of descriptive data elements for core- and minimal-level records, with the difference between the two levels centered on name authorities and subject headings, neither of which are required for minimal records. The core record includes subject headings, if applicable, however only those deemed "most essential for the identification/access of the serial" are required. Notes are given in the core record if the information is "essential to adequately identify the serial and/or its relationships, or to clarify access points." Name and title added entries are also required if they are "essential for record access or to adequately identify the serial or its relationships."
The full-level record will include the full compliment of subject headings, linking entry fields, note fields applicable to the serial, and all name and title added entries that apply. Also, the "physical description" (field 300) and "current publication frequency" (field 310) were added to form the full- level record, along with several control fields and fixed field elements. It was decided not to include classification as a required record element due to the numerous classification schemes used in CONSER and variations in local practice as to what types of serials are classified.
CONSER also agreed to follow an interim practice for identifying the core-level record until the encoding level code for the core level is operational. The CONSER Editing Guide (CEG) documents the record requirements in a new Section B6 in Part I. Plans for developing core records for several special formats were underway by the spring of 1995. Core records for special formats (e.g., serial microforms, serial computer files) are being developed with the assistance of the Format Integration Task Force. After input from CONSER and other cataloging specialists is assimilated, Section B6 of the CEG will then be expanded to include record requirements for serials in all formats.
CONSER developed and published new policies and practices for cataloging remote access computer file serials in FY95. Module 31 of the CONSER Cataloging Manual (CCM) was issued in Update 3 in the spring of 1995 and was also made available electronically via Internet access. The module was drafted by Melissa Beck (UCLA) and includes a thorough discussion on "What is a remote access computer file serial," as well as CONSER policies for documents in multiple file formats, recording location and access information, and other issues relating to the medium. These policies were developed over many months in consultation with others active in the field. Update 1 of the 1994 edition of the CEG, also available in the spring of '95, includes revisions of computer file fields to reflect these new CONSER policies.
Beck first drafted the module in fall 1994 and discussed her work at the November 1994 Operations Committee meeting, raising a number of questions and issues including how to handle multiple file formats, the use of the 856 field, and the serials definition as it relates to remote access files. To address these concerns, CONSER members used a variety of forums to gain insight from diverse library and Internet communities. Many of the issues raised at the CONSER Operations meeting were further discussed at ALA meetings in mid-winter 1995. The CONSER Electronic Resources Task Force issued an interim report in January 1995 that addressed many of the issues raised by Beck as well as broader matters indirectly related to cataloging (e.g., cooperative archiving). A small group in LC's Serial Record Division also helped to identify problems that needed to be resolved in conjunction with producing the module and initiated meetings at LC to discuss these issues. The library community was then canvassed via listservs to gain a wider input from experts in the field.
Three key issues that are addressed in the module involve the number of records needed for documents in multiple file formats, the description of computer file characteristics information, and the recording of location and access information in the bibliographic record. Significant support for using one record to describe remote access serials in multiple formats (e.g., ASCII, PostScript, HTML) is reflected in the module as CONSER policy. CONSER will currently use a computer file note field (516) to describe file characteristics, but will closely follow the developments of the file characteristics area of the record (field 256) as described in drafts of the revised ISBD (CF). Two areas of the record will be used to record location and access information--a bibliographic note field (538, System details note), and the new holdings field (856, Electronic location and access).
A special workshop for CONSER catalogers was held in LC's new Digital Library Visitors' Center during the Operations Committee meeting in May 1995. An online demonstration of Internet access to serial publications was offered, leading participants to numerous remote sites through different methods of access to view publications in various document formats. The workshop included a discussion on cataloging remote access serials that centered on new CONSER policies and CCM Module 31, and concluded with a small group cataloging session. Operations committee members also reported on local activities related to e- serials with a number of "pilot projects" in the start-up phase, and many planning to participate in the OCLC Internet Resources Project. Two CONSER members--Michigan and Indiana--are planning to coordinate a Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC) project to catalog remote access serials in the CICNet managed archive, with a sizable number of records expected to be CONSER- authenticated.
The 1994 edition of the CONSER Editing Guide was issued in early 1995. This was the first complete revision of the CEG since it was originally published in 1986. The new edition includes all changes to the variable fields resulting from the first phase of format integration, with the addition of only those fields relevant to serials cataloging. Also included were changes due to the AACR2 amendments. Most of the new fields added to the 1994 edition were for computer files and were previously included only in the computer file format. Several changes affecting the recording of subscription information, varying forms of the title, and title added entries were also included. The CEG was also fully reformatted with changes to the visual lay-out. Update 1 of the 1994 edition was issued in June 1995 and included documentation of new record requirements, including the core record, and reflected new policies developed for cataloging remote access computer file serials.
The second update to the CONSER Cataloging Manual was also issued in early 1995 and included numerous changes resulting from phase one of format integration, the AACR2 amendments, and recent policy decisions. Two new modules were included in 1995 as parts of the second and third updates: Module 32, "Microform Serials," prepared by Cecilia Botero (Florida), Crystal Graham (UCSD), Ruth Haas (Harvard), and Jean Hirons (LC), and; Module 31, "Remote Access Computer File Serials." Module 30, "Direct Access Computer File Serials," was thoroughly revised and reissued to reflect format integration-related changes.
Plans were underway by spring 1995 for the completion of format integration and the documentation of numerous fixed field elements newly available to serial catalogers in 1996. The CEG sections in Part II that include fixed field elements will be reorganized and expanded to describe new fixed fields for serial records and to include all the elements that apply to serials. The Format Integration Task Force continues to coordinate the effort to document format integration for CONSER.
At the November 1994 Operations Committee meeting, Anderson presented a report on the CONSER Maintenance Project that started operation in November 1993. Five institutions participated in the maintenance of CONSER records for varying periods of time: University of Kentucky, University of California--San Diego, Vanderbilt University, SUNY-Buffalo Health Sciences Library, and the University of California--Irvine. In one year 95 submissions were processed with 75% involving title changes or cessations. Anderson reviewed the record changes by accessing local save files using a restricted OCLC command.
The Task Force on the Maintenance of CONSER Records by Non- CONSER Institutions monitored the project and developed a regional model for participation in CONSER. The Operations Committee endorsed the implementation of a pilot project to test the feasibility of regional coordination of record maintenance activities. Based on the task force's final report delivered in February 1995, the scope of the project was expanded to include CONSER record maintenance (record updates) and the upgrading of minimal level records. Individual monitoring was shifted from LC to three CONSER members--University of Georgia, UCLA, and University of Pittsburgh--who work closely with the maintenance project participants and review the record modifications. OCLC further broadened the scope of the project by allowing participants to submit record changes for non-CONSER serial records directly to OCLC.
The Program for Cooperative Cataloging's Task Group on Documentation began a review of LC Rule Interpretations, Chapter 12, in early 1995 as part of their charge to review and simplify LC rule interpretations. Two CONSER participants, Rober Bremer (OCLC) and Jean Hirons, are members of the group. Hirons solicited comments and suggestions from CONSER members and LC catalogers in early 1995 and the task group met to discuss and propose numerous revisions. Included in the proposed revisions are recommendations for rule changes, which will also be coordinated by the PCC task group. Changes in other areas of LCRI include Chapter 1, mainly a rewrite of LCRI 1.6 (Series area).
A number of factors, including the development of the Program for Cooperative Cataloging, have led to increased interest in Program membership at a time when resources are scarce. The Executive Committee agreed that the 1995 Policy meeting should focus on CONSER's management and governance structure, as well as CONSER's role in the area of electronic serials, and agreed to hold a special Policy Committee meeting at the 1995 ALA mid-winter conference in order to prepare. As a result, two task groups were charged to prepare reports. The Membership Task Group, chaired by Martha Hruska (Florida) began work immediately and issued its final report in July. The main goals of the membership review are to examine the potential for growth and to assure that various levels and requirements for membership are flexible, realistic, relevant, and comprehensive enough to accommodate differing levels of contribution from a wide range of members. The Governance Task Group, chaired by Duane Arenales (NLM) began its work with the report on membership and will issue a final report in October. The task group will consider how to accommodate growth in a time of fiscal restraint. Further coordination with the PCC will also be considered with the governance review.
Two new types of membership are under consideration by the membership task group. A "CONSER-enhance" membership would include the maintenance and enrichment of existing CONSER records. And a project-based associate membership status could include the CIC project that will focus on a set group of online serials in the CIC Electronic Journals Collection.
The CONSER Electronic Resources Task Force was established in July 1994 and charged to identify issues pertaining to electronic resources (including the provision of access), and to recommend actions to the CONSER Policy Committee. The interim report identified areas for investigation and presented a number of initial recommendations for CONSER, including:
- Encourage the integration of electronic resources into collections and promote the cataloging of remote access serials;
- Educate others in the implementation and application of CONSER policies for electronic serials through the use of standard program documentation;
- Devise formal mechanisms to ensure that libraries that work with remote access serials cooperatively contribute to their access and control;
- Build liaisons with other interested agencies, such as ARL and CICNet;
- Contribute to the work of OCLC vis-a-vis Internet resources.
In the spring of '95, the task force, now chaired by Regina Reynolds (LC), was reorganized into six sub-groups that will focus on various concerns identified in the interim report as requiring additional work. (Michael Fitzgerald (Harvard), the original chair, resigned due to illness.)
- CONSER definition for remote access computer file serial;
- Multiple versions of remote access serials;
- Use of the 856 field for location and access;
- Use of terminology relating to the format (including subject subdivisions);
- Use of Uniform Resource Locators (URLs), Uniform Resource Names (URNs), SGML Document Type Definitions (DTDs), and the TEI header, and;
- Proposal for the NISO standards subcommittee on electronic materials.
The final report of the task force is expected in October 1995 for discussion at the Policy Committee meeting in November.
A further recommendation was that CONSER consider how or if it should play a role in the archiving of electronic serials. Bill Gosling (Michigan) and Ross Atkinson (Cornell) were charged with preparing a white paper for discussion at the 1995 Policy Committee meeting.
The Conferences Task Force was established after the 1994 Operations Committee meeting that discussed conference publications and raised a number of cataloging concerns including: coordination of monographic and serials treatment, and establishing conference names and titles. The task force, which includes serial and monograph experts, was charged to review and recommend changes to AACR2 and LCRI, and will focus on general treatment (serial/monographic), the choice of title and title changes, and establishing headings for conferences. The task force first met in June 1995 and expects to start with a review of the literature and then define different types of conference publications to consider possible solutions. Also, a survey will likely be developed for listserv distribution. An ALA CC:DA task group on conferences will address the issue after the CONSER report is completed.
The Joint Steering Committee for the revision of AACR has proposed that a conference be held by mid-1997 that would focus on basic principles addressed in AACR2, such as rule 0.24 (carrier over content), what is a work, the definition of edition, and the concept of main entry. CONSER is concerned that serial issues be adequately addressed at the conference and has identified several questions and concerns that could be included in a paper presented at the conference. Crystal Graham was asked to begin the effort by outlining many of the shortcomings of the code concerning its treatment of serial publications in a paper delivered at the AACR 2000 pre-conference in June 1995.
The task force will identify and investigate serial concerns, and recommend changes needed in AACR2, using Graham's paper as a starting point and beginning with the issues below.
- Whether a new category of "dynamic material" should be defined
- The need to integrate serial aspects into rules for non- print publications
- Bibliographic identification as a distinct function from description
- Title changes -- earliest entry, latest entry, or a more refined successive entry
- Uniform titles as main entries for translations and language editions
The task force report, that is due in June 1996, will state the main problems, present recommendations for change, and recommend a CONSER spokesperson(s) to write and deliver a paper at the proposed conference, if so invited. Also included in the task force charge are recommendations for additional changes to the rules or rule interpretations that could be addressed through normal channels.
Center for Research Libraries
The highlight of the Center for Research Libraries' (CRL) CONSER-related activities this year was the awarding of an HEA Title II-C grant to catalog the foreign newspapers. The grant was originally written as a two-year project, but will be funded for a total of one year due to the elimination of HEA Title II-C funds. The first year of the grant was designed so project staff would concentrate on those newspaper titles for which the Center held master negatives. Our objective was to provide this information to other libraries with preservation programs so they could avoid filming the same material. Through June 1995, project staff had cataloged 435 titles for which CRL holds master negatives. Total statistics through June include 1,052 original titles (nearly all of which have been added to the CONSER database) and 312 titles for which authentication of existing records was done.
Although we were very successful in filling all staff positions at the beginning of the grant year, project activity has recently been reduced because of staff vacancies. Because of this, we have asked for and have received a no-cost extension of the grant through March 1996.
Another project that undoubtedly will have an impact on the Cataloging Department is a collaborative effort by CRL and the Latin American Microform Project (LAMP). This is a grant funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for scanning and converting to digital form approximately 675,000 frames of previously microfilmed reports. CRL and LAMP have signed a contract with PFA, Inc. of Sun Valley, California to scan and convert the images. The resulting product will be stored on a juke box located at the Center, and will be available on CRL's World Wide Web site (URL=http://wwwcrl.uchicago.edu).
These materials have already been cataloged by the Center. Therefore, the cataloging for the digitized version will most likely be treated as a multiple version. Although there is precedent for us to follow conceptually, cataloging such materials is new for us and we will certainly seek the advice and help from any others who have already cataloged such material.
As a result of the Foreign Newspaper grant and considerable activity by the rest of the Department, contributions to the CONSER database have doubled over last year.
Cornell is an RLIN library, cataloging on our local NOTIS system and uploading to RLIN by tape. To contribute to CONSER, we search our newly cataloged serial titles on our single OCLC terminal and send printouts of our original cataloging and printouts of updates to the Serial Record Division for authentication and input into the CONSER database. It is hoped that soon we will have the capability to submit records electronically, perhaps through Z39.50, and that next year's annual report will reflect this technological upgrade.
For the year 1994/95, we submitted 502 printouts of original cataloging records, and 386 updates for records already on OCLC.
With respect to NACO, Cornell has separate operations for CONSER and non-serial records. For CONSER, we contributed to NACO 262 new name authority records and updates to 63 records during 1994/1995.
This past year began with the Harvard University Library CONSER Office's move back to Widener Library, Room 87. The Office had moved from this space a little over a year ago and now shares it with the College Library's Serial Cataloging Team. Both units were glad to unpack, settle in and focus on workflow priorities and cataloging production. Statistics for original and first time authenticated records increased by 25% to 2,229 bibliographic records, maintenance by 7% to 3,621, and NACO contribution by 4% to 1,103.
About 500 serial titles held by the Pre-Columbian Studies library at Dumbarton Oaks in Washington, D.C. were converted to our local online catalog, HOLLIS. Holdings of the other libraries at Dumbarton Oaks, those of the Center for Byzantine Studies and the Center for Studies in Landscape Architecture, had been previously converted. On an on-going basis, all three libraries will have their currently received titles centrally cataloged by HUL/ CONSER Office staff as a part of Harvard's CONSER commitment.
While Office staffing remained the same, we welcomed Dale Flecker as our new Policy Committee representative. Ruth continued as Chair of the CONSER Format Integration Task Force and was one of the contributors to CONSER Cataloging Manual Module 32, "Microform Serials."
In related areas of serial activity at Harvard, the Recon Project directed by Karen Carlson Young has added an estimated 110,000 serial record to HOLLIS. For the project, catalog cards are converted in-house if a match is found in HOLLIS. If not, cards are sent to OCLC where matching bibliographic records are claimed or, if no record is found, a record is keyed into a Harvard recon file. In HOLLIS, all recon titles include summary level holdings information. While the bulk of Harvard's serial titles have been converted, some smaller collections remain to be completed. The serial segment of the Recon Project is anticipated to finish in early 1996.
A new edition of the HOLLIS Holdings Editing Guide, which provides in-depth instructions for Harvard's use of the USMARC Holdings Format, was completed by Julie Wetherill, Training Coordinator in the Office for Information Systems. All Harvard libraries are urged to report their currently cataloged serials' holdings in HOLLIS at a detailed level. The guide lists fixed and variable fields used with the holdings format, defines codes and subfields, and illustrates common, as well as not-so-common, holdings examples. The manual is an important resource for Harvard's serial cataloging community.
The many contributions made during fiscal year 1994/1995 by the Serials Cataloging Unit of the Serials Department, Indiana University Libraries, once again reflect our continued commitment to the CONSER Program. In addition to supporting cataloging activities for current serial materials, the unit also participated in numerous special projects and initiatives. Of particular note during the past year was the completion of a project to retrospectively convert all serials housed in the University's prestigious School of Music Library. The Serials Cataloging Unit was also one of two CONSER participants who joined the CICNet Electronic Journal Cataloging Project.
During the past year, the Serials Cataloging Unit added 977 original and/or newly authenticated bibliographic records to the CONSER database and performed maintenance on 3,507 additional authenticated records. A total of 197 new name and series authority records were contributed to the national authority file and 209 existing authority records were updated and/or corrected. These figures represent an overall increase in the unit's CONSER cataloging activities from the previous year despite a loss of a .5 FTE precat searcher position. A two-month vacancy in one CONSER/NACO cataloging position during the early portion of the year temporarily affected Slavic cataloging activities, however, the Serials Cataloging Unit is now running on its full level of staffing at two librarians and 7.5 FTE paraprofessional staff.
In May 1995, Indiana University Libraries entered into a partnership with Ameritech and the University of Chicago Libraries to participate in the functional specification development of HORIZON, a client-server based library system for large research libraries. As work proceeds in this joint development effort, it is anticipated that involvement with local implementation of the new system may temporarily affect productivity within the Serials Department.
Library of Congress
The arrival of additional Bibliographic Work Stations (BWS) and enhancements to the Text Capture and Electronic Conversion (TCEC) program brought added efficiencies to the cataloging sections, but also brought significant training needs. The ability to use TCEC to create serial location records came at an opportune time, since there was a shortage of MARC Verifiers during the fiscal year. Those catalogers who received BWS's during the year experienced minor frustration as they moved to an unfamiliar keyboard and new macros, but all have made a smooth adjustment, and are learning to exploit the advanced capabilities the machine provide.
Planning for reorganization of the cataloging sections within Serial Record Division continued while the discussions of organizational placement were taking place. The six focus groups formed in the previous fiscal year drafted their reports and work toward reorganization of the cataloging sections began in November 1994. Task forces were formed in January 1995 to deal with two major issues: copy cataloging and transition and training plans for catalogers. A general meeting to outline the next steps and to present a proposed schedule for reorganization will take place early in the next fiscal year.
In response to continued requests from the Law Library community, a decision was made to change treatment policy and to recatalog approximately 200 titles published by Shepard Publishing Co. The positive response has been "overwhelming." In response to a request from the American Association of Law Libraries, Janet Szarmach prepared and delivered a report on the decision at that organization's annual meeting in June 1995. Several other longstanding problems with law serials are being re-examined at the request of the Law Library.
Continuing arrearage projects include the cataloging of "Review before bind" titles selected from the Serial & Government Publications Division arrearages; a project to catalog Thai serials from the Asian Division with existing source copy; cataloging of comic books from the Serial & Government Publications Division arrearages; cataloging of Amharic serials from the African & Middle Eastern Division arrearages; and cataloging of the Pulp Fiction Collection from the Serial & Government Publications Division. Beginning in June, low priority state documents were received for cataloging, which relieved a backlog in the serials cataloging sections.
As a component of the Serial Record Division's participation in the Association of Research Libraries-sponsored conversion of serial records in the National Register of Microform Masters, LC staff has been involved in both quality control of records input by OCLC's conversion staff (the contractor for the project) and preparation of LC's microform master reports.
National Serials Data Program
Once again during FY 1995, NSDP struggled with decreased staffing but managed to maintain reasonable currency with most ISSN requests from U.S. publishers; the U.S. Postal Service; and the Library of Congress serials workflow. During fiscal year 1995 NSDP assigned 6408 ISSN, including 2042 prepublication assignments. During this period there was increased interest in ISSN for remote access online serials and increased effort within the section and division on how best to register and catalog them. To date, NSDP has assigned over 200 ISSN to this type of serial. A contract project was started in the year to validate and send records to the ISSN International Center for 853 Bowker- assigned ISSN with holdings in NOSP, the Nordic union catalog.
NSDP will soon begin distributing a brochure entitled, "What's in a Name?" which was developed by the American Library Association's ALCTS Serials Section to inform publishers about how to present serial titles and bibliographic information. NSDP's World Wide Web home page will provide an online link to the HTML version of the document, as well as other ISSN information.
U.S. Newspaper Program
During FY 1995, NEH announced new U.S. Newspaper Program implementation awards to the University of Florida, the Library of Michigan, the South Dakota State Historical Society, and the University of Tennessee. A planning grant was awarded to the D.C. Public Library, and awards were made to continuing projects in Alaska, Delaware, Illinois, Rhode Island, Texas, and Virginia. With current planning projects in the last two states, Oregon and Vermont, the program has funded projects in all fifty states and the District of Columbia. Work was completed in Indiana and Massachusetts during FY 1995. Twenty-seven states and two territories have now completed their work. If NEH is able to continue funding at near current levels, the program is expected to complete all its work by 2006.
USNP participants continue to work on three special projects: a thesaurus of genre terms for use in newspaper catalog records, which is being prepared in cooperation with the ALA ALCTS Newspapers Interest Group; working with the CONSER Program on a newspaper cataloging module for the CONSER Cataloging Manual; and a USNP preservation microfilming manual, which is being prepared by a task force of USNP project staff and will be published by the New York State Library.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MIT Libraries is happy to report its highest CONSER production year to date, with a 47% increase over last year. While the major increase was in maintenance of authenticated records, contribution of original records also increased significantly. In addition, our CONSER-related NACO production was also our highest of any year to date.
This production is particularily satisfying given that this was a year when all of the staff were involved in bringing up a new integrated library system. One of the serials cataloging staff members was given the responsibility of coordinating training on the new system for the entire library staff. Others worked on various implementation teams or spent time testing migration data as well as system functionality. All staff were also involved in more informally poking and prodding the system, trying out documentation, and discussing workflow implications. Add to all of this the fact that there was a vacant original cataloger position throughout the year, and it becomes clear that this was a year of remarkable accomplishment.
In January 1995, Jo Lynne Byrd was apointed Head, Serials Cataloging Section, a position that had been vacant since the departure of Helen Ploss in April 1993. Before the end of the year, she found herself significantly involved in CONSER activities as Chair of the newly formed Task Force on AACR Review. David Van Hoy continued to serve on the Operations Committee, as well as on the Conferences Task Force and the Format Integration Task Force. Carol Fleishauer continued to serve on the Policy Committee and the Task Force on Core Elements (through completion of its charge), and was newly appointed to the Electronic Resources Task Force.
This year was also the year MIT's Director of Libraries, Jay K. Lucker, announced his retirement, effective August 31, 1995. Jay has long been an advocate of cooperative efforts among libraries, and enthusiastically supported MIT's joining the CONSER Program in 1988.
National Agricultural Library
On September 30, 1994 Idalia Acosta retired from the National Agricultural Library (NAL). She had served as the Library's policy representative to CONSER. In June 1995, Sally Sinn was appointed as Associate Director of Technical Services. She is the current NAL policy representative for CONSER.
As part of NAL's Electronic Information Initiative, remote access serials are being selected and cataloged for CONSER and AGRICOLA, NAL's database.
NAL continues the State Agricultural Publications Program with the libraries of the land-grant universities of 47 states. The goal of this program is to provide access to the publications issued by the agricultural experiment stations, the state extension services and the Colleges of Agriculture through the AGRICOLA database. NAL serials cataloging activities continue to emphasize serial records for agricultural publications from the state agricultural experiment stations and extension services.
NAL maintains the World List of Agricultural Serials (WLAS), a database of 65,000 agricultural serial records. WLAS consists of serial records from NAL, CAB International, the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, and other agricultural organizations.
National Library of Canada
Between July 1994 and June 1995, the National Library of Canada (NLC) contributed 3,045 records for Canadian serials to CONSER via offline loading, and authenticated another 243 online, for a total contribution of 3,288 records. These included Canadian government and non-government serials in all formats. NLC also modified 2,757 records.
An era came to an end on July 14, 1995 when Christina Yuen retired from NLC after more than 18 years as CONSER Librarian. John Clark has assumed the CONSER Librarian duties since Christina's retirement, assisted by Yvonne Barnett, and under the direction of Wayne Jones, Leader, Serials Team.
NLC's new online system AMICUS arrived on June 12, 1995. As of the end of August 1995, a backlog of CONSER offline loads was completed and current tapes are now being loaded into the database.
During the period July 1994-June 1995, ISSN Canada registered 3,757 Canadian serials, revised 1,730 ISSN records and assigned pre-publication ISSNs to 1,448 not-yet-published Canadian serials.
National Library of Medicine
In December 1994, the National Library of Medicine lost one full-time serial cataloger reducing the staff of serial catalogers to 2.5. As of June 30, the serials cataloging unit and two monograph cataloging units were merged to form two new units within NLM's Cataloging Section. One unit has responsibility for cataloging both serials and print monographs; the other for audiovisuals and print monographs. Kevin McShane continues to serve as NLM's representative to the CONSER Operations Committee.
In the past year NLM contracted for services to provide limited level cataloging of serials in Japanese, Chinese, and German and for cataloging assistance for 50 serials in Scandinavian and some other European languages in which arrearages existed.
NLM continues to catalog serials in its own local database and to contract for entry and authentication of these records in OCLC. In addition, for the first time, NLM sought contracting assistance for cataloging lower priority English language serials.
New York Public Library
For many years NYPL wanted to joined CONSER but couldn't, because its serials cataloging was not on the OCLC system. In November of 1994, we switched most of our cataloging activities, including those of serials, from RLIN to OCLC and became a full member of CONSER. Instead of sending one librarian down to LC to be trained in CONSER cataloging, we asked LC to send an instructor to New York so that more librarians could receive direct training from LC staff. This turned out to be an excellent arrangement. For two weeks, nine librarians from our Serial Cataloging Section were trained by Herbert Weinryb, who is from LC's Serial Record Division. We appreciate very much the thoroughness and seriousness with which Herbert undertook the training. After six months of review, in May of 1995, NYPL became an independent contributing member.
Between November of 1994 and June of 1995, we created 392 original records, authenticated 79 existing records, and did maintenance on 39 records. Since OCLC was a new system to our serial catalogers, it took some time for them to become comfortable with and proficient in cataloging on OCLC. We think production will go up next year.
The Serial Cataloging Section here processes titles published in the Roman alphabet and covers printed format, microforms, electronic formats, and mixed media. Materials totally in vernacular scripts are handled by the language divisions (Jewish Division, Oriental Division, Slavic and Baltic Division). Special format items such as sheet maps, sound recordings, video tapes, and archival materials are cataloged by the respective special divisions. We plan to train some of the catalogers in those divisions to participate in the CONSER program.
New York State Library
The New York State Library catalogs New York State document serials, newspapers, new subscriptions, and title changes at the CONSER level. For the twelve month interval of July 1994 - June 1995, 118 original records were contributed to the CONSER database. 641 titles were matched and upgraded; another 139 were authenticated. 1,155 maintenance transactions were performed and 17 records were reported for deletion. NACO in-house training sessions were begun for monographic and serial staff in March 1995. 473 name authority records were created in 1994/95. Cataloging staff consists of 2.20 FTE catalogers and 3 library technical assistants. Two of the three library technical assistants are new recruits. They replace seasoned catalogers - i.e. a .80 FTE cataloger with 6 years experience and an LTA with 16 years of experience.
Due to implementation of a new SIRSI online system, we were unable to input records for four months between September and December. During this interval, staff prepared workforms for serials which were input when our system became fully operational. The 1994/95 FY was very exciting, full of new learning opportunities. Each catalog staff received her/his own 486 workstation lanned to OCLC; SIRSI; LC - Dewey conversion tables; and the Internet. Staff was trained in windows; in SIRSI search and edit procedures; in new procedures necessitated by SIRSI; in e-mail; listservs; and Cataloger's Desktop.
The fiscal picture is less than rosy. With the harsh political reality of reduced funding for both staff and materials, the library discontinued 925 gift and exchange titles. The number of paid serials expected to be cancelled is 2,000.
U.S. Government Printing Office
The Cataloging Branch of the Government Printing Office, Library Programs Service continues to identify, catalog and authenticate serial publications issued by the U.S. government for the CONSER database. With two full-time catalogers devoted to serials and another cataloger working part-time in serials in addition to performing series authority work, the GPO serials staff continued their efforts to reflect the current bibliographic status of Government serials in a timely manner.
During the 12 month period of July 1994-June 1995, GPO serials staff did original CONSER-level cataloging for 533 titles. We also authenticated 247 titles, already present in OCLC, for addition to the CONSER database. Thus GPO added a total of 780 records to CONSER in 1994-1995.
Maintenance of the 1100+ serial titles present in the Periodicals Supplement accounted for a large part of the 2631 data base maintenance transactions GPO logged during the report year.
The serials cataloging staff also continues to create series authority records via LSP for U.S. Government series. 169 records were contributed to the authority files during the report year.
University of California, Los Angeles
At the local level, both the University Research Library (URL) and Law Library Cataloging Departments were much involved in clean-up efforts of one variety or another. The URL Cataloging Department Continuations Section, in coordination with language specialists in the Department, successfully reduced its backlogs of non-Roman titles, particularly Arabic language materials. In preparation for the physical move of the Law Library during Summer 1995, the Law Library Cataloging Department participated in the manual revision of location codes in several thousand ORION cataloging records.
Regionally, UCLA served as the coordinator of CONSER maintenance activities for two other UC campuses, UC Irvine and UC San Diego.
Many of UCLA's activities were, this year, concentrated at the national level. Brian Schottlaender completed his tenure as Chair of the CONSER Core Elements Task Force, successfully accomplishing the charge to the Task Force to develop a Core Record definition for serials. In May 1995, he delivered a paper at the Medical Library Association conference on "Implications for Access of Core Records (Monographs and Serials)." Melissa Beck was asked to represent CONSER interests on the OCLC Internet Cataloging Project Advisory Group. In addition, she was appointed to the CONSER Electronic Serials Task Force.
On the documentation front, Melissa Beck completed work on CONSER Cataloging Manual, Module 31, "Remote Access Computer File Serials." Rhonda Lawrence, meanwhile, began work on the CCM legal serials module (#34).
University of Florida
1994/95 was a year of productive change for the UF Serials Cataloging Unit. The Unit was fully staffed throughout the year, enabling the catalogers to increase cataloging contributions in general, and UF's CONSER and NACO contributions in particular. Unit staff also have been key figures in the NEH funded Florida US Newspaper Project and a Caribbean newspaper imaging/indexing project.
The Serials Cataloging Unit contributed a total of 806 records to the CONSER database, a 23 percent increase over last year's effort. This total figure includes submissions by the Florida Newspaper Project which began cataloging in earnest in June of 1995. Even subtracting the USNP input, the total CONSER contributions for the year is 765 records, a healthy 17 percent increase over last year. The increased contributions are particularly significant because UF actually observed a 5% decline in the number of titles received to catalog. Nevertheless, contributions have increased in all categories with the exception of maintenance. The drop in maintenance can be attributed to an unexpected decrease in the number of title changes. In 1993/94, the Unit cataloged a total of 634 title changes. In contrast, the title change count for FY94/95 was 389 titles, reflecting a dramatic drop of 39 percent. The significant drop this year is hard to explain and appears to be a local phenomenon. Figures for other CONSER institutions do not appear to reflect this trend. Over the next year, UF's Serials Cataloging will monitor this trend and try to provide some insight into its possible causes.
All records for the Florida newspapers, cataloged as part of the USNP grant, are being contributed to the CONSER database as full level CONSER records. Florida is the only CONSER library that has contributed U.S. newspaper titles as full-level CONSER records to the database. The grant comes at a good time, since the USNP cataloging manual is going to be merged into the CONSER cataloging manual. The cataloging staff hired for this project includes Bob Dowd, who had experience cataloging New York newspapers in its USNP project. UF's grant team already has been very productive.
UF volunteered to take part in the OCLC Internet cataloging project. Beth Allerton, serials cataloger, is serving as the coordinator for this project. To date, UF has not contributed any Internet serials records to the CONSER database as part of this project, but expects to do so over the coming year. Over this past year library policy has been debated and will now be implemented, covering how these resources will be "maintained" and accessed.
Serials Cataloging Unit staff have been key figures in UF's Mellon-funded project to index and produce digital images from scanned microfilm copies of two Caribbean newspapers. This project has been of particular interest because of the commitment to index and abstract significant articles and link these to the scanned images.
University of Georgia
Newly-authenticated serials reached a new high of 564 for the year. Overall contributions to CONSER rose to 1204, marking the seventh consecutive year that total CONSER activities have increased. Systematic series authority contributions to NACO began in late July and have continued at the rate of thirty per month. John Riemer is reviewing the CONSER maintenance contributions of Vanderbilt University during the March-November 1995 phase of the experimental project. He also serves on the Task Force on AACR Review and one of the subgroups of the Electronic Resources Task Force.
University of Michigan
In June, the University of Michigan completed its IIC grant project to catalog the Labadie Collection of social protest literature. Project efforts produced 2,489 full-level CONSER records, authenticated 1,794 member records, created 865 NACO authority records, and updated 239 authority records.
The University Library has agreed to participate in the CIC e-journal project to catalog selected titles in the CICNet archives. The libraries participating in this project will create CONSER level records.
We have created 99 full-level, non-authenticated electronic serial records, 3 authenticated records, and have also updated 62 previously authenticated electronic serial records.
University of Pittsburgh
The University of Pittsburgh had no staff changes in Serials Cataloging in the past year. However, the East Asian serials contribution tapered off a bit in the latter part of the year due to the CJK Serials Cataloger receiving expanded responsibilities. Government Documents catalogers contributed perhaps a dozen or so records this year via the Government Documents Unit.
Our contribution in terms of language and type of material has remained about the same with the exception of serials acquired in the collection of Polish materials from Alliance College (PNA collection). We have done more Polish serials this year than in previous years due to the PNA efforts.
The total statistics for CONSER serials are very good given the increased responsibilities that serials cataloging has had with non-serial cataloging projects and assignments. We have been able to maintain our commitment to CONSER even with the need to provide attention to non-print and other alternate formats as well as serials. The SUNY-Buffalo partnership has yielded 16 maintenance records since its inception in March through June 30, 1995.
University of Texas at Austin
CONSER activity continued once again to center around Latin American serials. In addition to the regular flow of new titles and title changes, some 150 titles acquired through a Department of Education Foreign Periodicals Program grant were cataloged. These titles, all in the field of Mexican economics, were selected because they were unlikely to be held in other U.S. libraries, so most of the cataloging was original.
A special project in summer 1994 was the cataloging of all currently received Latin American newspapers; previously only newspapers in scope for USNP had catalog records of any kind. The success of this project, measured by considerably increased use of the papers, has encouraged us to consider cataloging other foreign newspapers as time and staff permit.
A major workflow change occurred in fall 1994, when all CONSER catalogers began creating their original serial records directly online in OCLC, rather than creating paper workforms for later input by data entry operators. While this has not yet had the hoped-for effect of increasing cataloging productivity, it has greatly reduced the time between the intellectual process of cataloging and national availability of the records online.
Another new activity in 1995 has been the cataloging of about a dozen remote-access electronic serials as part of the OCLC Internet Cataloging Project. The cataloging is being done by a non-serials cataloger, then reviewed and authenticated like other CONSER records.
University of Washington
During 1994-95 the Serials Cataloging Section increased its level of contribution to the CONSER and NACO programs. The section authenticated or maintained 2,254 serial bibliographic records, a 7% increase over last year. NACO contributions increased by 50% with 322 new headings or changed authority records contributed.
The Head of the Serials Recon Section, Carolyn Pedersen, retired at the end of January. Responsibility for serials retrospective conversion activities was transferred to the Serials Cataloging Section. Carolyn was re-employed at 40% and continues to do serials cataloging for the section. Section staffing was further strengthened with the hiring of Steve Shadle in March. Steve is focusing on cataloging serial computer files and electronic resources. He is also serving as the Libraries local project coordinator for the OCLC cooperative cataloging project, Building a Catalog of Internet Resources.
The Libraries and Computing & Communications began a project to link serial information from abstracting and indexing databases to the serials holdings of the UW Libraries catalog. Staff in the Serials Cataloging Section began converting and updating bibliographic records for titles from four locally loaded databases which lacked ISSNs in our catalog. Another major project undertaken this year was the purchase and load of current and retrospective GPO records from Marcive for U.S. depository materials. Of the 330,000 retrospective records that have been loaded, approximately 17,000 are serial records. Staff in the Government Publications Division will be involved in a multi-year effort to barcode selected materials and create item and check-in records. With this project, GPO/Marcive records will become the official source of cataloging for government publications received on deposit by the Libraries. The Government Publications Division will assume responsibility for processing and copy cataloging of these materials. Cataloging and Serials Cataloging will continue to provide original cataloging for those depository materials which do not have Marcive records and are sent to one of the branch libraries or other service units.
Kristin Lindlan and Anke Gray revised Module 30, "Direct Access Computer File Serials," which was published in Update 2 to the CONSER Cataloging Manual in the fall of 1994. Kristin was one of the faculty for the ALCTS Institute, Serials Cataloging in the Age of Format Integration, held April 7-8, 1994 in Atlanta, Ga. Kristin's presentation focused on cataloging of computer files. Harriet Selkowitz served as a member of the CONSER Membership Task Group.