FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) about Vermont Library Cataloging Services


    FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) About
Vermont Library Cataloging Services


Q: Who is eligible to receive Vermont Library Cataloging Services?

A: The Vermont Library Cataloging Services is available to libraries meeting the Minimum Standards for Vermont Public Libraries and to libraries working with Technical Assistance Teams.

Q: Are branch libraries elilgible to receive cataloging service?

A: The library unit which applies for and meets minimum standards for public libraries is regarded as eligible for one allotment of MARC records per year. When more than one library applies for standards as a unit or a library with branches applies, the allotment for the unit is still the same.

Q: For a library meeting standards for the first time, when can orders first be placed?

A: Orders can be placed as soon as an OCLC symbol is assigned and a test is run after the library's profile is esstablished with OCLC. Adding new libraries takes a few weeks to process with OCLC.

Q: When is the service available?

A: The service may be used only for materials newly acquired during the period of eligibility, Jan. 1 through Dec. 31.

Q: What is the source of the MARC records?

A: OCLC WorldCat is used as the source.

Q: Is cataloging for non-print materials available?

A: Yes, OCLC WorldCat is the largest cataloging database in the world and contains MARC records for many different formats of materials.

Q: Can a request be made for serial cataloging instead of monographic cataloging?

A: Generally, the Cataloging Service is for monographs, not serials, because serials cataloging tends to be much more complicated. Also, since PUBcat is used for interlibrary loan, borrowing libraries can tell from the monographic cataloging which items (issue, date, etc.) your library actually owns.

Q: What type of subject heading is in the MARC records?

A: Library of Congress subject headings are provided on the MARC records. The LC headings are more specific than Sears Subject Headings, which means you can look things up under the most obvious term, rather than trying to figure out which more general Sears heading would apply. Don't be concerned if you have a mixture of Sears and LC headings in your catalog. You won't notice any serious disruption of service with the mixture of headings, and, of course, all the headings provided in Cataloging in Publication data are LC.

Q: Since my library doesn't order 1,000 new books each year, can we order retrospective cataloging?

A: Unfortunately, VTLIB is not able to supply records for retrospective cataloging except for Vermont items. Our policy specifies that we supply, free of charge, up to 1,000 MARC records each year to each participating library, for current acquisitions only. However, no limitation is placed on publication dates of the materials that are newly acquired at your library.

Q: If our library uses the Vermont Library Cataloging Services, do we still need to send holdings information to the Vermont Union Catalog?

A: Libraries that meet standards no longer need to supply VTLIB with VUC holdings information for titles cataloged through the Vermont Library Cataloging Services. Your library holdings will appear in PUBcat, the online database of public library holdings included in the Vermont Automated Libraries System (VALS).

Q: What if a library has problems with Vermont Library Cataloging Services orders?

A: Since we don't see the actual items for which we order cataloging for libraries, we count on you to keep us posted on how the service is working. Your comments, suggestions, and problems help us evaluate procedures and the service. Please call TSU staff at 828-6953 any time.

Revised  December 23, 2013


This program supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, a federal agency,
through the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by the Vermont Department of Libraries.


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