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The Library of Congress > Cataloging, Acquisitions > PCC > CONSER > Annual Reports > 1998/1999 Annual Report

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Compiled by the Library of Congress
Serial Record Division, October 1999


1998/1999 has been a year of continuing challenges from electronic serials, expansion into new areas, and continued hard work on the part of CONSER catalogers. The CONSER Operations Committee held its annual meeting April 22, 1999 at the Library of Congress with opening and closing sessions held in conjunction with BIBCO. CONSER At Large meetings were held at both mid-winter and annual ALA meetings. Jean Hirons continued as CONSER Coordinator. In July 1999, CONSER Specialist Bill Anderson was detailed to the Integrated Library System (ILS) Serials Coordinator position in the Serial Record Division, Library of Congress. Les Hawkins, NSDP Cataloger, has been assisting with some of the CONSER Specialist duties since then.

CONSER membership grew to 35 members, with the University of Oregon joining as a CONSER enhance member and the Faxon Company joining as an affiliate. The CONSER database grew to 886,462 records with the addition of approximately 30,000 new records. This is a 12% decrease in growth from 1998. This may be due in part to changes in the statistical reporting method, ILS implementation, and staffing shortages.

Highlights of the past year include the inauguration of the Serials Cataloging Cooperative Cataloging Program; continued work on the revision of AACR2, culminating in the report of specific recommendations submitted to the Joint Steering Committee on the Revision of AACR2 in April; development of guidelines for use of the single record option for electronic versions which make this official and no longer an experimental option; participation in a PCC task force on providing access to titles in aggregator databases; and deliberation on including publication patterns and holdings data in CONSER records.

For many CONSER participants, 1998/1999 might be called the "year of the ILS"! UCLA, NLM, Georgia, LC, Cornell, Harvard and others were either in the process of deciding on a new system or working on implementation. In August, LC catalogers began working on Voyager, the ILS purchased from Endeavor Information Systems, Inc., with full implementation completed in October. Implementation decisions affecting CONSER include the separation of the CONSER database internally with non-LC CONSER records no longer appearing in the local OPAC, and the fact that LC catalogers ceased "swapping out" CONSER-assigned sn-prefixed LCCNs for LC- assigned unprefixed numbers. The separation of the database may impact on the ability to detect duplicate and missing records in the distributed CONSER database.

Regina Reynolds, Head of the National Serials Data Program, LC, was honored with the 1999 Bowker/Ulrich's Serials Librarianship Award. This is the fourth year in a row that the award has been given to a serialist actively involved in CONSER.

A bibliography of articles cited in the annual report has been included as a new appendix.

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CONSER membership

CONSER welcomed two new members during the year: the Faxon Company, an affiliate member, and University of Oregon, an enhance member. Faxon, a major subscription agent with facilities in Illinois and Massachusetts, is one of eight companies comprising the Dawson Information Services Group. Another of the eight, Dawson Information Quest, Inc., based in California, produces a state of the art serials indexing and full text retrieval product, IQ. Late in the year Faxon and the Dawson group became part of Rowecom.

Both Faxon and Dawson Information Quest may participate in adding and maintaining data in CONSER records. Of primary interest is abstracting and indexing data as well as the details of publishing.

Ed Jones, Systems Analyst at Dawson Information Quest, represents both Faxon and Dawson Information Quest on the CONSER Operations Committee. For both Faxon and Jones, this is a return to CONSER. Faxon was an affiliate member during the 1980's and Jones was the CONSER representative from Harvard from 1981-1989.

The University of Oregon, represented by Mary Grenci, completed its induction into CONSER enhance, working with Kristin Lindlan at the University of Washington as mentor. The University of Oregon will update and maintain CONSER records for serials that have undergone change and add vernacular data to CJK records.

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AACR2 revision and associated activities

Four review groups, set up by Hirons in early 1998 to contribute to the recommendations of revisions to AACR, completed their reports in early 1999. Creative solutions to some of the most challenging issues were offered and commented on: "Establishing a Benchmark to Determine When to Make a New Serial Record" by Jean Hirons, Regina Reynolds, and Guenter Franzmeier and: "Proposal for a Succession of Latest Entry Records" by Jean Hirons, Judy Kuhagen, and Regina Reynolds. Final reports were posted to the CONSER Web site in Jan. 1999 and the CONSER Task Force on AACR Review met at mid-winter ALA to discuss the reports and recommendations. The papers mentioned above and the final reports of the task groups are available at

In April 1999, Jean Hirons submitted the report "Revising AACR2 to Accommodate Seriality: Report to the Joint Steering Committee on the Revision of AACR2" and in May the report was posted to the JSC Web site (external link) for worldwide review. Hirons discussed the report with CONSER and BIBCO participants during a joint session of the annual meeting in April. Hirons also presented highlights from the report at the North American Serials Interest Group conference and ALA annual meeting in July and at the annual meeting of the American Association of Law Libraries in July. A task force of the Cataloging and Classification: Description and Access (CC:DA) Committee, chaired by Wayne Jones of MIT, has reviewed the report for the official response from CC:DA. Regina Reynolds attended a workshop on seriality at the International Federation of Libraries Association (IFLA) meeting in Bangkok in August and discussed the CONSER AACR recommendations. Hirons and Reynolds wrote an article for the Library Review, "Seriality: It's Not Just for Serials Anymore" and Reynolds wrote an article for LCATS titled "Back to the Future of AACR: Retooling Former Cataloging Practices to Solve Problems Old and New."

A major goal of the report is harmonization with other international standards. Reynolds, Hirons, and Judy Kuhagen participated in the revision of ISBD(S) and Reynolds worked with ISSN colleagues in the revision of the ISSN Manual, meeting with the group in Paris during May.

In addition to the JSC report, Hirons also prepared a discussion paper for MARBI, DP 114 ( The report covers three areas of potential impact on MARC 21 if the recommendations are adopted: the bibliographic level (leader/07) and how records will be coded and displayed in library catalogs; the inclusion of both earliest and current publication data in the publication area (field 260 or a related field); and the need for a new code value to represent the new use of "latest" entry that is recommended by the JSC report.

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Serials Cataloging Cooperative Training Program

The Serials Cataloging Cooperative Training Program (SCCTP) was officially inaugurated in spring 1999. The first course, Basic Serials Cataloging Workshop, was prepared by Cameron Campbell (University of Chicago) and materials are available from the Cataloging Distribution Service. 36 trainers from the U.S. and Canada attended one of two train-the-trainer sessions in June, the first held in Pittsburgh prior to the annual conference of the North American Serials Interest Group (NASIG), and the second held prior to American Library Association (ALA) meeting in New Orleans. As of late September, 13 workshops are scheduled and 7 more are in the planning stage, offered by various North American sponsors. Three will be held in Canada. The SCCTP Web site contains the schedule of workshops, guidelines for workshop sponsors, descriptions of course material, and other information.

The success of the program to date is due, in large part, to the hard work of Steering Committee members during 1998/1999. They participated in every phase, including the preparation and review of course materials, discussions on funding and distribution of materials, preparation of a brochure and other promotional materials, and reviewing applications of trainers and checking on references. CONSER members on the Steering Committee were Ann Ercelawn, David Van Hoy, and John Riemer. In addition, PCC Chair Sally Sinn joined Jean Hirons in presenting an information session at the ALA MidWinter meeting. The Steering Committee was converted to an Advisory Group with many of the original members remaining. The chairs of the PCC and the ALCTS Serials Section Education Committee serve as ex officio members.

Jean Hirons wrote an article for the Serials Librarian, "SCCTP: Continuing Education for Continuing Resources" which explains the formation of the program based on the survey of the library community.

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Single Record Option for Online Versions

A CONSER Working Group was appointed in early 1999 to review the "Interim guidelines for remote access versions of electronic serials" (CEG Appendix N) to determine whether more specific guidance could be provided for when the single record option is or is not appropriate. Group members were: Valerie Bross (UCLA), chair, Crystal Graham (UCSD), Christa Hoffmann (NLM), Cecilia Sercan (Cornell), and Steve Shadle (Washington). Crystal Graham drafted a report for the Working Group, CONSER WG: Single v. Separate Records which was discussed at the CONSER Operations meeting, the CONSER At Large meeting at ALA annual, and the Committee to Study Serials Cataloging meeting, also at ALA annual. The report includes a description of various types of online serials; conditions for which a particular approach is appropriate, pros and cons of the two approaches, and suggestions for modifying the CEG and CCM.

Participants at the CONSER At Large meeting decided that the guidelines should no longer be termed as "interim" but should remain "guidelines" rather than CONSER policy since they cannot be enforced. The "rules of thumb" for when the option is appropriate were incorporated into Module 31 of the CCM as a result of the discussions.

Publication Patterns and Holdings

Shortly before the ALA/Midwinter meeting, Diane Hillmann (Cornell) suggested to Jean Hirons that CONSER records should become the vehicle for sharing MARC publication pattern and holdings fields. After initial discussion and excitement generated at the CONSER At Large meeting, a task force was formed, chaired by Hillmann. The CONSER Task Force on the Inclusion of MARC Publication Patterns/Holdings in CONSER Records was charged with investigating how the exchange of MARC holdings pattern data could be facilitated. While holdings have always been considered local information, the proposal from Hillmann was to create a generic holdings record that would indicate what had been published, rather than what any one institution owned.

Participants met at the CONSER Operations meeting in April and discussed many aspects of the proposal, from technical issues to staff and training. They concluded that publication pattern data is a higher priority than holdings for the group's work. The focus is on encouraging standardized use of the MARC Holdings format to allow for input/export of the data among local systems.

A demonstration project with OCLC will begin in early 2000, whereby a local 891 field will be enabled in CONSER records to carry pairs of 85X/86X fields representing the current pattern for a title and its associated holdings. To ensure adequate participation, CONSER enhance membership will be expanded to include libraries willing to add and update 891 fields.

The task force was originally set up with a short term goal and a final report due in July 1999. After further investigation of the numerous issues involved, Hirons concluded that a long term task force is needed. A revised charge was developed and Sally Sinn (NAL) agreed to chair the group since Hillmann will be busy with ILS implementation.


Several CONSER representatives were involved in the PCC Standing Committee on Automation Task Group on Journals in Aggregator Databases. This group is investigating and making recommendations for a useful, cost-effective and timely means for providing records to identify full-text electronic journals in aggregator databases. The task group has focused on defining the content of a vendor-supplied record, completing a demonstration project with EBSCO, obtaining commitment from Bell and Howell to create records for ProQuest, and exploring options with other interested vendors. The effort began with a CONSER working group and evolved into a PCC task group when the automation possibilities became evident.

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CONSER documentation

Module 34: Legal Serials, the latest addition to the CONSER Cataloging Manual (CCM), was completed in August and scheduled for publication in fall 1999. The module was written by Rhonda Lawrence (UCLA). Ann Sitkin and John Hostage of Harvard assisted with the final editing and review. The module, which is the most substantial CCM chapter to date, provides a clear explanation of the various types of legal serials and the key issues in cataloging them: entry, uniform titles, and subject headings. Illustrations of each type of legal serial are included as well as the records for them. The module also includes an extensive glossary of terms and list of references.

Changes in the CONSER Editing Guide update 10, spring 1999 included documentation of several new CONSER linking conventions: linking to monograph records, the use of subfield $i and indicator value "8" in place of 530/580 notes, and identifying multiple linking relationships between titles. Use of the new form subdivision $v in subject headings has also been documented. Changes stemming from LC's implementation of its ILS are also covered. The major change is that LC catalogers will no longer "swap out" sn-prefixed LC control numbers for unprefixed numbers. All MARC 21 changes implemented by OCLC and relevant to serial records are included in this update.

Member reports

Center for Research Libraries

October 1998-September 1999 This past year, the Cataloging Department at the Center for Research Libraries (CRL) once again participated in numerous activities within the CONSER program and made many contributions in support of CRL's continued commitment to the Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC). During the past year (through Aug. 1999) the Cataloging Dept. at CRL added 937 original and/or newly authenticated bibliographic records to the CONSER database and performed maintenance on 714 additional records. In the course of normal cataloging activities, the Dept. also added or updated 735 name and series authority records in the national authority file through our participation in NACO. Retrospective conversion and arrearage cataloging continued on a limited basis as the much-reduced staff concentrated on cataloging the newly acquired material. Work continued on cataloging and collating the foreign newspaper collection held at CRL made possible by a grant from NEH. Work started on the project in June 1997, and is scheduled to be completed in Oct. 1999. In addition to the regular cataloging activities, staff in the Dept. were involved in: barcoding and creating item records for all newly cataloged monographs and multi-volume monographs previously cataloged; adding subject headings and LC classification numbers to CRLCATALOG bibliographic records; cataloging the first acquisitions of the Slavic and East European Microform Project; copy-cataloging the first acquisitions of the Thai Materials Project funded by the Title VI Centers; profiling and customizing the CRL Webpac; and exploring possibilities and collections for grant-funding. Cataloging Department staff were involved in maintaining and updating the Foreign Newspaper, Ethnic Press, Current CIS serial and newspaper databases on CRL's website and in preparing records for the Current Science Serials Database.

The Cataloging Dept. staff have also started devising a plan for providing bibliographic access to the Center's uncataloged collections. Marjorie Bloss was elected and will serve as a member of the PCC Policy Committee. Adriana Pilecky-Dekajlo was appointed Head of the Cataloging Dept., and Xiaojing Lei will join the staff starting Nov. 1 as a cataloger of Far Eastern materials, after working on the Foreign Newspaper Project.

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Columbia University

Organization and staffing of serials cataloging and CONSER work at Columbia University Libraries remained substantially unchanged during CONSER year 1998/1999. Columbia succeeded in meeting CONSER production requirements again, with an increase of more than 15% in CONSER activity over 1997/1998. That primarily reflects an almost 60% increase in CONSER maintenance transactions, with other contributions staying close to 1997/1998 levels.

Refurbishment and reorganization of library spaces on Columbia's Morningside Heights campus continued during 1998/1999, most visibly in Butler Library. Newly remodeled facilities include the beautifully restored Wien Main Reading Room, the Butler Reference desk and collections, the Periodicals Reading Room, and numerous training and computer-access rooms. Associated with these renovations, there were a number of large reclassification, transfer, and withdrawal projects, as collections were moved and consolidated. Serials cataloging staff cooperated with collection maintenance and special projects personnel to complete those, while keeping up with processing of current receipts and not forming new backlogs.

Plans for building, operating, and administering a permanent offsite storage facility for library materials progressed in 1998/1999. Columbia, New York Public Library, and Princeton University are jointly developing the facility, which will be located in New Jersey. Columbia also continued work with Yale University and the University of Pennsylvania on BorrowDirect (formerly called the CoPY Project), a new cooperative interlibrary loan and document delivery system. BorrowDirect will provide the library-user communities of the cooperating institutions with a common online interface by means of which they can search all the libraries' collections and request materials from any of them in transactions resembling those of local circulation. BorrowDirect implementation is expected in fall 1999.

Columbia welcomed Rick Block in late 1998 as the new head of the Original and Special Materials Cataloging Department, in which serials cataloging is done at Columbia. He replaced Joan Swanekamp, who left Columbia in early 1997 to become director of cataloging at Yale University. Deputy University Librarian Carol Mandel departed Columbia in spring 1999 to become dean of libraries at New York University. The post of Acting Deputy University Librarian has been filled by Bob Wolven, Columbia's director of bibliographic control and policy-level liaison to the CONSER Program.

Columbia librarians were active in the Program for Cooperative Cataloging in 1998/1999. Kate Harcourt, assistant head of the OSMC Department, continued serving as a member of the BIBCO Operations Committee. Susan Summer became a member of the PCC Standing Committee on Standards. Carroll Davis served on the CONSER Operations Committee and participated in the work of the CONSER-led AACR Review Working Group 2A and of the CONSER AACR Review Task Force.

Cornell University

Cornell University staff did not significantly change the scope or scale ofits CONSER cataloging operation during 1998/1999, but they made one significant change in the method for contributing CONSER records. Rather than inputting the records directly into OCLC and adding the CONSER fields on the following day, they are now cataloged locally in our NOTIS system. Using the real-time upload feature of the OCLC Cataloging Microenhancer, staff then automatically move the records into OCLC. As a last step, CONSER fields are added on the following day. The result is that there is no intermediate period when a Cornell serial appears in the OCLC database without the CONSER fields. Cornell's average contribution to CONSER for this year was 33 records per month. The most significant contribution was in the area of Southeast Asian serials.

Continuing the trend of recent years, Cornell University's Central Technical Services is working toward merging serials cataloging with each cataloger's workflow. The same is true of electronic resources cataloging. There are no separate serials or e-resource cataloging operations.

Harvard University

Harvard's contribution to the CONSER database this year included a total of 2,816 original input and first-time authenticated records. Our maintenance to records already in the database totaled 2,994 records. We created 800 new name authority records as a part of our CONSER participation and did maintenance work on another 381 existing records.

Ann Sitkin and John Hostage, of the Harvard Law School Library, completed the Legal Serials module, begun by Rhonda Lawrence of the UCLA Law Library, for the CONSER Manual. The module discusses descriptive and subject cataloging issues common to legal serials, aspects of serials cataloging that are unique to legal publications, and details how to handle representative types of legal serials such as session laws, codes, administration regulations, court rules, treaties, law reports, attorney general opinions, legislative records and official gazettes. It also covers law reviews, bar association journals, digests, and citators. In addition to entry and description, the module also provides guidance in subject cataloging. The Legal Serials Module will be distributed with the next CONSER Update, in Fall 1999.

This year, our CONSER participation was broadened to include newly acquired, current subscription titles received by the Judaica Division, a unit in the College Library's Area Studies Department. All divisions of the Area Studies Department, which includes Slavic and Middle East, now contribute records to CONSER.

A number of Harvard catalogers, including several serials catalogers, from the Law School and Widener libraries, attended Judy Kuhagen's series authority workshop in Washington, D.C. and have begun to contribute series authority work to the National Authority File.

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Indiana University

Fiscal year 1998/1999 was a time of great change for the Serials Cataloging Unit at Indiana University. On April 19, 1998, the technical service units were reorganized. The Serials Cataloging Unit, formerly a part of the Serials Department, became part of the Cataloging Division of the Technical Services Department. Preparations are now underway for moving all units to one centralized location. Though it is not anticipated that the move will be completed until late fall 1999, reporting lines have already been changed and procedures redesigned. With the creation of the new Cataloging Division of the Technical Services Department, Mechael Gago Charbonneau, formerly Acting Head of the Serials Department and Head of the Serials Cataloging Unit, became Head of the Cataloging Division. James Castrataro, formerly the CONSER/NACO trainer within the Serials Cataloging Unit became the Supervisor of the Serials Cataloging Unit. In order to expedite the cataloging of all serial government publications held by the Libraries, a new staff position was added to the Serials Cataloging Unit. At present, the Unit consists of one librarian, one professional appointee, and 7.25 FTE support staff. It is anticipated that a temporary one-year staff appointment will also be filled to help support the retrospective conversion of serial publications at the Lilly Library, the university's rare book library.

The Serials Cataloging Unit is participating in a CIC-funded project to preserve African newspapers through microfilming. The Unit is providing prospective full-level CONSER bibliographic records for the preservation masters. A similar grant proposal has recently been submitted for the preservation of Latin American periodicals. In an effort to cope with the ever- increasing need for cataloging net-based electronic resources, the Serials Cataloging Unit joined the OCLC CORC (Cooperative Online Resource Catalog) Project. It is hoped that CORC will be of use both in the selection and the cataloging of gratis electronic publications.

Indiana University Libraries are currently experiencing severe overcrowding in its stack areas. In response, the Unit provided support for the maintenance of bibliographic and holding information for items being withdrawn, transferred, or targeted for transfer to our planned Auxiliary Library Facility. Due to poor storage conditions at our present off-site storage facility, it was also necessary to withdraw over 10,000 water-damaged serial volumes. The Unit also provided significant computer support and training for such online cataloging tools as the Catalogers Toolkit, the Catalogers Desktop, and for creating and maintaining constant-data macro keys to minimize the time needed to perform repetitive tasks.

With all this, the Unit still managed a 30% increase in the number of titles cataloged for the year.

Library of Congress
Serials Cataloging Sections

The entire year was focused on training and implementation of the Library of Congress Integrated Library System. All cataloging staff underwent a series of basic skills training, orientations, previews, updates and at least four separate formal classes (staff searching, whole item cataloging, shelflisting, and serials check-in) consisting of 56 hours of structured training. The Division continued to devote a substantial amount of time to planning and documentation due to the flexible nature of the new system. Days one for cataloging and serials check-in were successfully completed toward the end of the year. The coming year promises to be a time for workflow rationalization and polishing documentation.

The Division completed a contracted project which claimed/cataloged approximately 10,000 non-LC records before the ILS initial bibliographic record load. An overtime and temporary hire project was completed in which an additional 13,700 inconsistent PREMARC/SERLOC records were identified and updated to allow merging during the bibliographic load without duplication. The coming year will see a great deal of additional work in resolving conflicting records.

The major part of the Serial Record Division manual was updated to reflect modifications to work flow procedures resulting from the ILS. The manual will continue to be updated on a continuing basis to reflect the evolving complex workflows.

There were major ILS related changes in the Processing & Reference Section. Prior practice in the Library of Congress included manual check-in for serials and several independent on-line files for tracking serials, including records in PREMARC and SERLOC. The new practice focuses everyone's effort on one database and includes input of on-line records by the Processing & Reference section for non-keep materials. The two manual serial records were merged to eliminate duplicate holdings and inactive manual records in several letters were extracted to a separate file to allow a major space move for the new ILS workstations.

In the area of personnel matters, Carolyn Leonard retired as the Head, Cataloging Section II in December 1998.

Library of Congress
National Serials Data Program

During FY 1999, NSDP remained seriously understaffed, with a low of 3.5 catalogers for portions of the year. This was due in part to two catalogers being detailed to Section 2 to learn to perform full-level cataloging and one cataloger being detailed half-time to the CONSER specialist position. When the catalogers in training return, NSDP will begin combining ISSN assignment and full-level cataloging for some U.S. "keep" serials. Yet again, requests for NSDP to assign ISSN to electronic serials increased. The majority of the fiscal year was spent simply struggling to keep up with ISSN requests. As in previous years, the great majority of NSDP's ISSN requests came from directly from publishers. Approximately one third of publisher requests were for prepublication ISSN. During the past year, processing times for postpublication requests increased from 4 weeks to over 8 weeks at times. Thanks to diligent staff efforts, processing time for prepublication requests was maintained at around one week or less. Responses to requests and queries from CONSER libraries also suffered. It is expected that with the return of staff in training, postpub processing times will return to a more normal state.

ISSN production for October 1998 - September 1999 was: 4988 ISSN assigned

Other activities include:

NSDP Web site: applications forms in pdf, HTML, and pre-formatted text were added. The pdf form is the most used. Also added was the algorithm for calculating the ISSN check digit as expressed in the current manual. This was in response to recurring requests for this information.

Distribution of ISSN records: Regina Reynolds met with staff at the ISSN International Centre in fall, 1998 to help resolve problems arising from the conversion of U.S. records. Many records for NSDP's assignments to non-print serials were added to the ISSN database but problems remain with others, particularly some online serials. Efforts will continue to synchronize NSDP's assignments with the ISSN Online file.

Electronic serials:

NSDP assigned a total of 1123 ISSN to electronic serials from 8/98 - 8/99 The total represents 951 ISSN assigned to online serials (371 prepub); and 172 (36 prepub) to CD-ROMs. NSDP continued to work closely with major publishers such as Academic and Wiley which are putting all of their serial titles online. NSDP will also be working with Project MUSE to assign ISSN and authenticate records they are preparing for new project titles. The increasing number of serial titles which form part of packages offered by aggregators has raised many questions for NSDP.

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology

On May 4, 1999, we marked the first anniversary of our implementation of core-level cataloging of all serials and journals. Our main purpose in implementing core cataloging was to rationalize our cataloging so that we are not spending our time and energy on cataloging details which are not necessary to the broad range of users of the records, and so that any resultant time-savings could be spent working on other backlogs and projects. We have found that the results have not been dramatic: some cataloging time has been saved but not a lot. We think that the two main reasons for the modest benefits we have experienced are that the core record we have tailored for our local use is still rather full, and that the number of serials we catalog here is small in comparison to other ARL libraries. We still continue with core-level cataloging, though, as it costs us no time and even its modest benefits are still valuable. For a full description of our experience, see the article "Gimme a C!: MIT's Experience with Core Cataloging of Serials", forthcoming in vol. 37, no. 3 of _The Serials Librarian_.

Retrospective conversion and other cataloging projects continued during the year. There have been three main projects:

  1. We have completed the investigation (and in most cases the actual cataloging) of all the priority uncataloged serial collections. The main collections cataloged have been a report series at the Aeronautics and Astronautics library, the Bureau of the Census FT series and some union periodicals and other collections at the Dewey library (management and social sciences), and a collection of Archives serials issued by the Research Laboratory of Electronics (about 80 titles). Several other collections, all of them small, remain to be done, and several more have been identified by collectors as not to be cataloged at all.
  2. The recon of the unclassed journals continues: we expect to have it completed by early 2000. Work on this phase of recon began in Mar. 1998. There were 1100 journals then, and now there remain about 300. These are journals for which the recon is more complicated because of a difference in the entry between the title as shelved and the title on the record found for it, or because no record was found at all, or because there is some other problem with the record.
  3. The recon of old DDC-classed serials and journals housed at our off-site storage facility also continues: in fact, we are now devoting more than one FTE to the effort. This is a very large collection, and it is difficult to estimate when this project might be finished. The only ranges in which there remain serials to be done are the 3XX^Rs, 5XX's and 6XX's.

In the case of those last two projects, we do not create CONSER-level records.

E-serials cataloging continued to be a major (pre)occupation. We cataloged about 300 e-serials and e-journals during the year. Our basic cataloging policy has been to use the single-record approach as our first choice, except of course in cases where we cannot because MIT does not subscribe to the original version, or when the original version of the serial is no longer published because the e-version replaces it. During summer and fall 1998, we also reviewed and updated the URLs and holdings of all e-serials cataloged to date, and subsequent to that review we implemented monthly use of a shareware linkchecking program called Linklint. We have found that the checking of the reports requires only a few hours of our time each month, and that less than 5% of the links need fixing. Carol Fleishauer continues to serve on the PCC Steering Committee, Eric Celeste served on the PCC Committee on Automation's Task Group on Journals in Aggregator Databases, and David Van Hoy continues as a member of CONSER Operations Committee. Wayne Jones and David Van Hoy both served in one capacity or another on several of the AACR Review Task Force groups. David also served as a member of the Steering Committee of the Serials Cataloging Cooperative Training Program. Wayne served as chair of the CC:DA task force charged to examine Jean Hirons's _Revising AACR2 to Accommodate Seriality_.

There was one staffing change. Nora Blake, one of our copy catalogers, left to become coordinator of the Vermont Newspaper Project. She was replaced by Lauren Moffa, who was formerly a cataloger at the Massachusetts College of Art.

National Agricultural Library

Electronic serials are now a significant part of our contribution to the CONSER program. The major emphasis continues to be United States Department of Agriculture electronic serial publications. Beginning in January 1999 about half of our contribution of authenticated records are now e-serials. The Cataloging Branch began using link scanning software to verifying that the URLs on our bibliographic records are current.

The conversion of our manual series authority file to an online file was completed this year. Serials catalogers continue to work on resolution of series authority problems identified during the process. NAL serials catalogers have increased their contribution of new series authority records to the NACO Program because of the conversion. Two serials catalogers attended the series authority training at LC in May.

Retrospective conversion of the Library's pre-1970 USDA serials continued on a limited basis with a contract for original cataloging in OCLC.

The Technical Services Division' continues to evaluate its serials processing workflow and have eliminated our pre-cataloging backlog of serials. Our processing goal with our new workflow is to complete serials processing within the Division within 30 days.

Sally Sinn, Associate Director for Technical Services Division, served as chair for PCC.

National Library of Canada

From September to December 1998, NLC continued to load new Canadiana records to OCLC by tape. NLC had intended to switch our new record loading procedure to FTP in January 1999. However, due to systems difficulties and MARC format changes, OCLC has been unable to load new NLC records since January 1999. Once loading resumes some duplication of records may occur. National Librarian of Canada Marianne Scott is retiring in September 1999 after fifteen years in this position. Roch Carrier, a Canadian literary figure and arts administrator, takes on the role of National Librarian in October.

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National Library of Medicine

In the past year there have been some significant changes in cataloging at the National Library of Medicine. Beginning in the fall of 1998, NLM implemented Endeavor Information Systems' Voyager as its new integrated library system (ILS) to support basic library functions including acquisitions, serial control, cataloging, collection management, circulation, and preservation. The ILS also supports a new online public access catalog, LOCATORplus, which replaces previous online access methods, such as Locator, CATLINE, AVLINE, and SERLINE. With the implementation of the Voyager Integrated Library System, the Cataloging Section also moved to harmonize its practices for subject heading content and structure with NLM's indexing practices. For this reason in the 1999 Medical Subject Headings (MeSH), NLM announced changes intended to facilitate cross-file searching and enhance retrieval in the ILS by assuring that the same terms produce like results for indexing citations, articles, books, serials, non-print materials, electronic resources, etc. NLM catalogers no longer qualify main subject headings or main heading/topical subheading combinations by geographic, form, or language subheadings. Instead, separate fields for geographic descriptors (651) and publication types (PTs) (655) are added and are used in coordination with the main headings or main heading/topical subheading combinations for retrieval. However, in output to other utilities, subject headings continue to be distributed in one field with the geographic name from the 651 field appended as 650 subfield z and the Publication Type from the 655 field appended as 650 subfield v. Note that this means that in OCLC the content of a field 650 subfield v will be a term from NLM's MeSH list of Publication Types, not from its list of Form Subheadings. PT's are capitalized and usually in the singular whereas Form Subheadings were entered in lower case and were in the plural. For example, a new NLM record as displayed in OCLC may have a MeSH heading ending with #v Annual Report or #v Periodical which formerly would have ended with #v periodicals.

NLM has also revised its policy for cataloging numbered monographic series. Formerly, if a series was in scope for NLM's collection, NLM would class the series as a collection and catalog it as a serial as well as creating a series authority record. Now, monographic series are generally classed separately at NLM and NOT cataloged as serials with the following exceptions: series selected for MEDLINE are cataloged as serials; series already cataloged as serials according to past practice generally continue to receive serial treatment; series available only by subscription may receive serial treatment. When there is doubt about whether to treat a monographic series as classed together or classed separately, NLM classes it separately.

In the spring of 1999, NLM began cataloging most serials at core level. NLM core records comply with CONSER core requirements but will contain NLM classification and full subject access. Serials selected for Index Medicus will receive full level cataloging and some foreign language serials will be done at minimal level.

In August 1998, Diane Boehr was hired as head of one of NLM's two cataloging units, Unit 2, which contains the serial catalogers. Ms. Boehr is an adjunct professor at the College of Library and Information Sciences, University of Maryland, is the current Chair of the Media Resources Committee of ALCTS (Association for Library Collections and Technical Services), and is the former Chair of the Cataloging Policy Committee of OLAC (Online Audiovisual Catalogers).

Kevin McShane, Hien Nguyen, and Sang Mah took the series authority training course offered before this year's CONSER Operational Meeting. Ms. Boehr had taken the three-day version of this training earlier. Ms. Nguyen also attended the Serials Cataloging Cooperative Training Program offered in conjunction with the NASIG meeting in June.

New York Public Library

Our participation in the CONSER Program has been uneventful for this reporting year. We authenticated 626 records, performed CONSER maintenance on 477 records, and Non-CONSER maintenance on 139 records. Our NACO contributions were 271 names and 249 series authority records. CONSER activities focused on newly acquired titles, although some retrospective conversion work is also included. Despite several unfilled openings in the Serial Cataloging Section, our CONSER contributions have remained fairly steady.

NYPL, Columbia, and Princeton have formed a consortium to jointly construct a high density remote storage facility on Princeton's Forrestal Campus. Close to two million volumes from NYPL will be transfer to this new facility in the year 2001. Many of these volumes are older serials, whose records are not yet converted. A sizable serials conversion project is being planned and staff in Serial Cataloging may be shifted in order to jump-start the project.

The position of the Director of Technical Services has been vacant for sometime and the Library continues its vigorous efforts in filling it. Our Director of Cataloging, Karen Hsu, was elected to PCC Policy Committee in June.

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New York State Library

The Serials Unit at the New York State Library has had a very productive year. Fortunately, staffing levels remained constant, but staff are continuously balancing their CONSER work with other activities and assignments. The New York State Library is assembling a committee to look at issues relating to cataloging, preservation and archiving of electronic New York State government information. The committee hopes to obtain input from depository libraries, issuing agencies and other involved participants. Details on the committee's report and the State Library's implementation will be included in next year's CONSER report. New York State and related materials continue to be the Library's highest priority. Older materials continue to be donated to the Library from various sources and they are being cataloged and added to the collection. In so doing, we have been able to add to both the Library's collection, and the national database for previously uncataloged documents. We are implementing a new imaging system which will enable the Library to scan more New York State documents and make them available electronically. Web-based access to the Library's online catalog through WebCat was made available to the public on October 1, 1998.

Other projects relating to New York State serials, although not all at CONSER level, were the completion of the 1993 OCLC WorldCat Collection Set of New York State document fiche and the holdings input of over 1300 reels of New York State legislative bills. The WorldCat collection is now complete for 1990-1993. Work is ongoing for later years.

The cataloging portion of the natural history microfilm project with Cornell University has been completed.

The New York State Library is looking both to its heritage in terms of access to older documents being cataloged, and to the future, in terms of access to electronic publications. We see the next year as a very busy one.

U.S. Government Printing Office

The Cataloging Branch of the Library Programs Service, United States Government Printing Office identifies, catalogs, and authenticates serial publications published by Federal agencies for the CONSER database. In recent years an increasing number of works published by Federal agencies have been serials and, among serials, an increasing number appear as works published by Federal agencies at their web sites.

The growth of serials published via the Internet is reflected on a weekly basis by the addition of ten to fifteen serial titles to the Browse Electronic Titles (BET) application at the GPO website.

Both serials and monographs identified by this application may be accessed via the web site version of the Catalog of United States Government Publications, or Catalog. Access may be achieved by the URL as of the date the record was produced or, failing this, by OCLC's Persistent Uniform Resource Locators, or PURLs. Through the efforts of a staff member, we maintain access by assuring that the most recently valid URL is maintained in the PURLs server so that users clicking on the PURL will be re-directed to the valid address. We are a major user of PURLs for large-scale applications and are keenly interested in this and other software that provides persistent access to electronic works. Many serial titles continue to have physical format versions that are available within many of the approximately 1,300 Federal depository libraries located throughout the United States.

Given limited staff and the large number of serials in multiple manifestations, we continue to use, as appropriate, CONSER's single record option. Use of this option makes it possible for us to provide access to both physical forms and Internet versions and to do so in as timely a manner as possible.The complex and dynamic nature of serials creates situations that continually challenge our catalogers. Much of this challenge results from an approximate sixty percent increase in the number of electronic serials that have been added to Federal Depository Library Program's (FDLP) Electronic Collection since the previous year. This continued migration to electronic versions and the need to provide access in the context of an electronic collection is a task that adds to the complexity of our efforts.

Given such a challenge, we are pleased to note that Ms. Esther Simpson, of the McKeldin Library, University of Maryland, is expected to join us in the very near future. Esther will be our fifth full time serials cataloger and will assist with representing and providing access to the electronic texts of an increasing number of serials.

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University of California, Los Angeles

Between October 1998 and August 1999, UCLA's CONSER contribution included 513 original records and 293 authenticated records. In addition, UCLA catalogers completed maintenance of another 461 previously-authenticated CONSER records.

UCLA staff members participated in various CONSER activities this year. Rhonda Lawrence, with Ann Sitkin (Harvard) and John Hostage (Harvard) completed work on the "Legal Serials" module of the CONSER Cataloging Manual. Sara Shatford-Layne continued to chair the CONSER Task Force on AACR Review. Valerie Bross chaired a Working Group on the topic: "Single v. Separate Records: What's Appropriate and When?" Ron Watson and Valerie Bross attended Judy Kuhagen's pre-CONSER meeting Series Authority workshop. And finally, Rhonda Lawrence and Valerie Bross attended SCCTP "Train the Trainer" workshops.

At the beginning of September, Brian Schottlander (Associate University Librarian for Collections & Technical Services) left UCLA. Many of you will recall that Brian Schottlander served as chair of the CONSER Policy and Executive Committee between 1996 and 1998. Cynthia Shelton, former UCLA Head of the Bibliographers Group, was expeditiously chosen to fill the position; she has already begun work as the new UCLA AUL for Collections & Technical Services.

University of Florida

Our total CONSER contribution for 1998/99 was 673 records broken down as follows: 374 full level originals ; 2 minimal level originals; 115 authentication of existing records; 80 subsequent authentication; 102 maintenance of CONSER records, and 13 maintenance of non-CONSER records.

This was a much better year for CONSER as our senior staff that had been working on a special foundation -funded project returned to do some very needed CONSER cataloging. Susan Constantineau, our new newspaper cataloger, has also helped with our CONER contributions, particularly in the area of original records. We were able to replace our two senior staff positions and have been in the process of training them, along with one of our new staff who is already making contributions to our CONSER cataloging.

Unfortunately our search process for a serials cataloger was not successful, but we are in the process of reposting the job description. Cecilia Botero, the CONSER Operations representative, has taken another position at the Health Science Center Library at UF and will no longer be the UF representative. The good news is that this move allows us to add the Health Center cataloging contributions to the CONSER database.

University of Georgia

The Libraries brought up Endeavor's Voyager system, after a year- long preparation effort, in July 1999; implementation toward being fully in production is now under way. In approximately two more years, all 34 institutions in the University System of Georgia will have done the same. GALILEO Interconnected Libraries, or GIL, is an extension of the GALILEO initiative, which provides access to databases and full text of journal articles. GIL will integrate into one system, a web-based online union catalog of all the book collections of the University System, and facilitate universal borrowing by patrons around the state.

In recent reorganization, the serials portion of the Acquisitions Department recently merged with the Periodicals Department to form the Serials Department. The Cataloging Department retains the Serials Cataloging Section, with Beth Jedlicka as acting head. John Riemer has become GALILEO's representative to the OCLC CORC Project half time and remains Assistant Head of Cataloging.

John Riemer is chairing the PCC Standing Committee on Automation Task Group on Journals in Aggregator Databases and made several presentations on the topic at meetings of the American Library Association. Beth and John trained at ALA New Orleans to become trainers for the new Serials Cataloging Cooperative Training Program (SCCTP), and John is a member of the SCCTP Advisory Group. Beth has been appointed to the Bowker/Ulrich's Serials Librarianship Award jury.

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University of Maryland at College Park

Jeanne Baker and Beth Guay participated in two groups of the CONSER AACR Review Task Force. Jeanne (Group 1) participated in the discussions concerning the definition of serials and cataloging style which is appropriate for electronic materials. Beth (Group 2B) participated in the discussions of new cataloging rules needed for the description of electronic serials. The final report was sent to the Joint Steering Committee in the spring of 1999.

Jeanne Baker continued as a member of the CONSER Task Group on Journals in Aggregator Databases. The work of the CONSER Task Group was placed under the guidance of the PCC Standing Committee on Automation in January 1999. The Task Group designed a prototype analytic aggregator record and worked with the vendor, EBSCO, to produce analytic records for the full-text titles in its aggregator database, Academic Search Elite. These records are available free from EBSCO. As a result of this work, Jeanne gave a presentation on the work of the Task Group at the annual meeting of the North American Serials Interest Group in June 1999 and at the annual meeting of the American Association of Law Libraries in July 1999. Feedback from these presentations and others given by Jean Hirons and Jean Pajerek (Cornell) also at AALL indicated that the audience considers the aggregator records to be very useful. The University of Maryland offered to be a test site for the load of the EBSCO aggregator records. The load is yet to occur and is currently under consideration for the entire University System of Maryland.

The University of Maryland was released from CONSER review of Chinese cataloging records in spring 1999. After completing the retrospective conversion of 509 Chinese language serials, Gordana Ruth is now planning the conversion of Japanese serial materials.

Jeanne Baker, Beth Guay, and Bobbie Mallett attended the CONSER Operations Committee meeting in April 1999 at the Library of Congress. They also attended a one-day series authority training institute given by Judy Kuhagen at the Library of Congress in conjunction with the CONSER meeting. Jeanne was selected as a trainer in the CONSER Serial Cataloging Cooperative Training Program. She completed a two-day training session in June 1999 and, along with Les Hawkins, has taught the first official SCCTP workshop held in August, 1999, at the Library of Congress for fourteen Federal librarians. Jeanne is also scheduled to be a trainer for a SCCTP workshop to be held at the University of Toronto in February 2000.

In June 1999, Jeanne joined the PCC Standing Committee on Automation as a permanent member, replacing Eric Celeste (MIT). This is a three-year appointment.

The Serials Cataloging Unit is progressing in meeting the statistical requirements for a CONSER member for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30. The Serials Cataloging Unit has already met the goal of maintaining a minimum of 250 CONSER records. Due to the complexity of the material received for cataloging, the Unit is experiencing a harder time meeting the minimum goal of authenticating 150 records for CONSER. This is a reversal from previous years.

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University of Michigan

A large portion of the Serials Cataloging Unit's CONSER work this year involved electronic serials. We are continuing to authenticate electronic serial records for JSTOR. We have been experimenting with the brief record structure developed by the CONSER Task Group on Access to Serials in Aggregators. We have created over 200 records locally for newspapers available in Lexis-Nexis Academic Universe. Scott Dennis, the Interim Head of the Humanities Team here, presented a public service perspective on aggregators at the June 1999 ALA Annual program on aggregators sponsored by the ALCTS Heads of Technical Services for Medium-Sized Libraries program "Aggravating or Aggregating? Providing Effective Access to Contents of Aggregator Databases". We are continuing to utilize the single record approach for online versions of print publications.

We have been participating in OCLC's CORC (Cooperative Online Resource Catalog) project. Tom Champagne presented an overview of, and some general comments on, CORC at the Cataloging Network Node held during the 1999 NASIG Annual Conference held June 1999 in Pittsburgh.

University of Pittsburgh

CONSER activity at the University of Pittsburgh was limited during 1998/1999 due to several factors. The University of Pittsburgh's serials functions, which were formerly performed in two units dedicated exclusively to serials, are now decentralized. All cataloging staff now are responsible for the processing of materials in all formats, including serials. In order to avoid creating backlogs of uncataloged materials, many catalogers do not create CONSER records for the serials which they encounter.

During the latter half of fiscal year 1998/1999, the University Library System at the University of Pittsburgh prepared to migrate from the NOTIS LMS to Endeavor's Voyager LMS. All cataloging operations were cut back during data migration and testing of the new system.

In addition, the primary contact person for CONSER serials cataloging at the University of Pittsburgh, who also serves as Pitt's representative on the CONSER Operations Committee, was on an extended leave of absence from April 1998-March 1999. Therefore, due to lack of familiarity with CONSER requirements, there was very little authentication of records by cataloging staff in her absence.

University of Texas at Austin

CONSER activity at Texas continued to involve almost exclusively Latin American serials. After a half-dozen years of substantial grant funding for Latin American titles, which ended in 1998, new receipts are down. This has allowed the catalogers to focus on backlogged materials, and on continuing work on the collection of early twentieth-century Mexican newspapers targetted for a proposed microfilming project. A changeover of computer equipment in Technical Services from Macintosh to Windows was completed during the year. Besides the increased speed of the new machines, using Windows has allowed the catalogers to use the macro for name authority record creation, a great time-saver when doing NACO work. Installation of a networked copy of the Catalogers' Desktop was also completed, and catalogers are still working on the transition from paper to electronic tools.

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University of Washington

Staffing changes had an impact on the Serials Cataloging Section this year, with a lot of training occurring. We had a temporary librarian in the section until mid-Dec. 1998 and hired another temporary librarian Nov. 1998 for a one-year appointment. One of the Library Specialist I copy catalogers resigned in March 1999 and this position was vacant the rest of the fiscal year. Two staff began doing work at a higher classification level, one .5 FTE staff person doing copy cataloging and another full-time staff member re-assigned to serials retrospective conversion, as well as continuing to do the bibliographic searching in the section. Another significant change was the move to a web-based public catalog in spring 1999, with some cleanup work done by serials cataloging staff . We implemented the use of CONSER minimal and core-level serials cataloging records as part of the Serials Services Divis ion's process analysis and improvement work. In the CONSER work of the Serials Cataloging Section and the catalogers from the East Asia Library, authentication of new and existing copy and subsequent authentication increased from 1262 titles last year to 1458 this year, an increase of 15.5%. Maintenance of CONSER records also increased, from 1617 to 2235, a 38.2 % increase. Print serial titles remained the primary focus of our cataloging work, with an effort being made to eliminate a backlog of older titles. However, electronic journals continued to demand ongoing work. Serials cataloging staff contributed to the bibliographic control of electronic serials through committee work (Collection Development Policy for Internet Resources) and through the cataloging of electronic journals and contributing records for the UW Libraries' Digital Registry, with Steve Shadle participating in its development. Retrospective conversion work focused on currently received titles as well as older titles in storage.

Three of us continued to participate in AACR revision work within CONSER this year. Steve Shadle worked on Group2B: Description (chapter 9) and Linda Pitts served as a consultant for Group 1: Definition. Kristin Lindlan contributed to the work of the CONSER Task Force on AACR Review and chaired Group2A: Description (chapter 12). All of these groups submitted reports recommending changes to AACR to better accommodate seriality. Kristin was guest column editor for a seriality-related Balance point column in Serials review: "Ongoing entities: the impact of modified Model C on cataloging description," v. 25, no. 1 (1999), pp. 95-108.

Other CONSER-related work focused on electronic journals and training. Kristin worked with Mary Grenci, University of Oregon, and Mary achieved independent status in CONSER enhance in June 1999. Steve served on a CONSER working group that created guidelines on the one record approach for print/electronic resources. Steve continued to provide cataloging training nationally and locally: three one-day electronic cataloging workshops for NASIG and a two-day workshop to test CONSER's Serials Cataloging Cooperative Training Program's (SCCTP) training materials. He also gave a presentation on cataloging electronic serials at the ALCTS Electronic Serials Institute in Portland, OR, April 16-17, and participated in presentations on the UW Libraries' Digital Registry at the annual meetings of the Coalition for Networked Information and the North American Serials Interest Group. He also published an article: "Identification of electronic journals in the online catalog," Serials Review, v. 24, no.2 (summer 1998), pp. 104-107

Continue to the Appendices

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