The Bibliographic Services Department, as part of the Stewart Library of the Weber State University, strives to ensure the quality of and access to catalog records representing both print and non-print materials in the library’s collection. 


The Bibliographic Services Department strives to collaborate with other departments in the library to improve resources and services.





The Bibliographic Services Department, Cataloging Unit of the WSU Stewart Library has developed cataloging best practices to serve as standard guidelines in preparing for, implementing and managing the Bibliographic Services Department.  These standards were developed in consultation with the Cataloging Community and approval of WSU Stewart Library Management.


The standards should be revised as needed.  Nevertheless, as of 2010 these standards and best practices should reflect changes in library automation standards, available technologies, and the library automation marketplace.


In this document, minimum expectations for best practices use the terms “must” or “required.” Practices that are preferred use the terms “may,” “should,” and “recommended.”








The Bibliographic Services Department has the responsibility to revise and update the Cataloging Manual and other in-house tools related to cataloging work in general.  They also discuss and make recommendations to Library Dean and the Head of Technical Services on any policies or procedures affecting the work of the catalogers in any way.


The department is composed of catalogers.  Anyone with business to present to the department can address a memo to the Cataloging Manager, or request an invitation to any upcoming meeting.          


Proposals approved by the department (including any modifications made by them) will be submitted to library management either in person or at management meeting.  After approval or disapproval, the manager will report to the department and see that appropriate changes, if any, be made to the Cataloging Manual.




1. The cataloging standard for bibliographic records is the Anglo-American Cataloging Rules, second edition (AACR2). All catalog records must meet or exceed the first or minimal level of description in AACR2 (Encoding Level K), plus series statement and subject headings where applicable. Catalog records should meet the second or full level of description in AACR2 (Enc Lvl I)  Full-level cataloging means records that meet the requirements of second-level description (AACR2, rule 1.0D2). 

Original cataloging for MARC records-- input a new master record cataloged according to current cataloging practices and AACR2. If different rules for descriptive cataloging are used to create the record (other than rules based on or consistent with AACR2, then code the 040‡e field with the appropriate MARC coding from the MARC Code Lists for Relators, Sources, Description Conventions (  If you are using your own descriptive conventions, enter your OCLC symbol in subfield ‡e. Enter subfield ‡e immediately after subfield ‡a.  Input full records when possible.


2. Subject headings must be assigned from a controlled vocabulary subject heading system/thesaurus provided for in the US MARC Format for Bibliographic Data, for example: Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), Library of Congress Subject Headings for Children’s Literature, National Library of Medicine’s Medical Subject Headings (MeSH).  Cataloger should use the latest edition of LCSH, if appropriate.


3. Holdings information must be kept current. Holdings records must be structured with summary holdings statements provided for multi-part items and serials containing data elements specified in the US MARC Format for Holdings Data and ANSI/NISO. Detailed holdings statements should be supplied according to ANSI/NISO.      


4. The automated system database (Horizon) must be maintained to ensure that individual bibliographic records accurately reflect the collection. Additions and deletions to the collection and changes in holdings and locations should be recorded and processed in a timely manner.


5. Recognizing the impracticality of upgrading retrospective cataloging to full-level AACR2 standards, libraries should follow the retrospective conversion guidelines in the latest edition of OCLC’s Bibliographic Formats and Standards, 2nd edition.


6. Abbreviated bibliographic records (below AACR2 minimal-level cataloging) may be used for materials of a transitory nature, such as those on order, in process, or having a short shelf life.


7. Libraries should implement name, subject and series authority control.


8. All records should contain one or more of the following numeric identifiers, if available: LCCN, ISBN, ISSN, OCLC record number and/or BIB number.


9. Changes in US MARC formats should be implemented by the local library accordingly.


10. Barcode numbers should be entered in 949/599 or an appropriate XXX field of the record. The tag selected should be used consistently throughout the entire database.







This manual provides general interpretations and explanations of cataloging rules and procedures.  It includes this library's interpretations and revisions of AACR2. The manual contains the following sections: general information, policies, call numbers, cataloging, area processes and procedures, and an index.  It helps coordinate the use of other cataloging tools.


Any user of this manual may suggest changes or corrections to it.  The Cataloging Department has the responsibility to maintain this manual, but all policy and procedures changes need management approval. 


Catalogers may make pencil changes to correct typographical errors or to change the wording to make the meaning more clear.  These changes have no affect on existing policies and procedures unless they are approved by the Cataloging Department, the library director and the Head of Technical Services. 


Others should advise the Cataloging Department whenever they find these errors so that others can be alerted to them and the errors can be corrected in the master copy of the manual.  Catalogers will make the changes in their own manuals, in pencil, until the manual is revised and the errors are corrected.




Each cataloging area outlines specific applications of the Cataloging Manual for that area.  Area Processes and Procedures should provide information concerning detailed guidelines, materials processing, subject headings, classification/call numbers, examples, etc.




The OCLC User's Guide provides instruction, tags, codes and other information necessary for inputting cataloging information into the computer.  OCLC is used to import data into the library cataloging system.  Visit OCLC website for details and other information:




These provide assistance in cataloging in the languages of the areas included in the catalog, as specified in the statement on languages.  They are catalogued as “staff.”



Horizon (SirsiDynix) is the Integrated Library System (ILS) of the Stewart Library.  Please see the online User's Guide for more information about cataloging.


The Cataloging Module provides tools for catalogers.  The rights to this module are assigned to catalogers.


The Serials Module pertains to serials cataloging.  The rights to this module are assigned to the serial catalogers.



Use OCLC Connexion Authorities to find LC Names and Subjects. You can also use LC Authority File.  The Library of Congress (, Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC) and other cataloging community online resources should help cataloger perform standard and best cataloging practices. 


Print sources pertaining to cataloging and library school are also available in the library.  Most of them are cataloged as “staff” and area located in Bib Services area (i.e., LCSH, MARC codes, How to of “Cataloging,” LC Classification, DDC, and so forth)