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Cataloging Manual

Cataloging in OPAL

Cataloging in OPAL is shared. All members use and view the same bibliographic record for an item. When cataloging your materials within OPAL, the most important factor influencing the cataloging process is whether or not an appropriate bibliographic record already exists in the OPAL database. This can only be determined by searching OPAL by OCLC number first.

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If an appropriate bibliographic record exists in the OPAL database, DO NOT export a new copy of the record from the OCLC database.

If a record is found to exist in the OPAL database but is found to be inferior to the current record in the OCLC database you should overlay the record using the following example 949 command:

*recs=b;ins=[your login initals];bn=[your library two-letter location code];ov=.bxxxxxxx;[bib record number of record already in OPAL]


In most instances, it is preferable NOT to export a new copy of the record so that local additions not reflected in the OCLC master record are not eliminated. Occasions under which new copies of a bibliographic record can be exported from OCLC include (but are not limited to):

  • serial records that have been closed or updated
  • CIP or K-level records that have been upgraded to a higher encoding level

In these instances, great care should be taken to make sure that local enhancements (e.g. enhanced contents notes, local added entries) are not lost. When records are loaded into the OPAL database (e.g. when exporting a record from OCLC), the system does NOT check the OPAL database for an existing copy of the record. If the record exists in the OPAL database (i.e. a record with the same OCLC number), the system will automatically ADD a new record to the database, creating a duplicate record . As such, the OPAL database should be checked for an existing copy of the record before exporting from OCLC, using the process outlined below.

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If an appropriate bibliographic record does not exist in the OPAL database, then you should export the appropriate record from the OCLC database.

Record Exists in OPAL Database

When an appropriate bibliographic record exists in the OPAL database, you should simply attach an item record (or item records) to represent your holdings. To attach an item record to an existing bibliographic record:

  1. In Sierra's Cataloging mode, retrieve the record by any of its indexed fields.
  2. With the bibliographic record displaying on the screen, switch the “View” to show “Item” (by selecting “Item” from the “View” drop-down in the “Summary” tab)
  3. Select “Attach New Item.”
  4. If creating multiple item records (e.g. for a multiple volume set), select “Multiple items” and enter the appropriate parameters in the “New Item Options.” Otherwise, leave the “Single Item” selected and select “OK.”
  5. The first time you create an item record in a given session, you will be prompted to select an item record template (templates specify default values for fixed-length fields and prompts for both fixed-length and variable-length fields). You can change the template used for item record creation by selecting “Settings” from the “Admin” menu and selecting the appropriate template in the “New Record Templates” section of the “New Records” tab and selecting “OK.”
  6. After selecting the appropriate template, you will be prompted for a series of fixed-length and variable-length fields.
  7. After entering the appropriate data for the prompted fields, you can make any other changes as needed.
  8. To add the item record to the database, select “Save” (either by clicking the “Save” button or by closing the bibliographic record at which point the system will prompt you to save the item record).

Once the item record has been added to the OPAL database, it is still necessary to update your holdings on the record in OCLC and to print labels for the item(s).

Record Does Not Exist in OPAL Database

When an appropriate bibliographic record does not exist in the OPAL database, it is necessary to export the appropriate bibliographic record from the OCLC database. To do so, you must add 949 fields to the OCLC record. You should add:

  • one 949 (with blank indicators) to instruct the OPAL system how to create the bibliographic record, and
  • [optional] one (or more, up to ten) 949 1 (with second indicator one) to instruct the OPAL system how to create the item records.

949 To Create Bibliographic Record

Each bibliographic record exported from OCLC MUST have at least one 949 field added to it before the record is exported. For example:

949    *recs=b;ins=wajv;bn=wa;

The following commands must appear in subfield a

  1. *recs=b;
    This command tells the system which load table to use to apply labels to each MARC tag. The *recs command must be the first command listed in the 949 subfield a.
     
  2. ins=[your system initials]; (e.g. “ins=wajv;”)
    This command tells the system whose authorization to use to create the record. The system will not create the records if the “ins” command is missing or the individual whose initials are listed is not authorized to create the records.
     
  3. bn=[location code]; (e.g. “bn=wa;”)
    This command tells the system to set the newly created bibliographic record’s LOCATION to your institution’s location code. See Appendix D for a list of location codes.

The first 949 can also include any of the following commands in subfield a. For example:

949    *recs=b;bn=wa;b2=s;b3=z;
  1. b2=[bibliographic record MAT TYPE code]; (e.g. “b2=s;”)
    This command tells the system to set the newly created bibliographic record’s MAT TYPE to the code specified. If you do not use this optional command, the bibliographic record’s MAT TYPE field will default to the value in the MARC record’s LEADER byte 7 (OCLC fixed field Type). This command is required when exporting serial and thesis records. When exporting a serial record, you must include “b2=s;” since the LEADER byte 7 is “a” (for printed language material) but the OPAL label for MAT TYPE “a” is “BOOK.” When exporting a record for a thesis, you must include “b2=z;”. For a complete list of MAT TYPE codes, see Appendix E.
     
  2. b3=[bibliographic record SUPPRESS code]; (e.g. “b3=z;”)
    This command tells the system to set the newly created bibliographic record’s SUPPRESS field to the code specified. For a complete list of SUPPRESS codes, see Appendix E.
     
  3. ov=[bibliographic record number or order record number] (e.g. “ov=.b12345678;” “ov=.o12345678;”)
    This command tells the system to overlay the existing OPAL bibliographic record or order record specified with the contents of the exported record. Example:
    *recs=b;bn=wa;b2=s;b3=z;ov=.b12345678;

949s To Create Item Record(s)

Additional 949s with second indicator 1 can be added to instruct the system how to create item records that will be attached to the newly created bibliographic record.

The following subfields should be used to specify the variable-length fields:

subfield a item record call number’s class number
subfield b item record call number’s Cutter number
subfield z MARC tag for call number*
subfield i item record BARCODE
subfield c item record VOLUME
subfield g item record COPY #
subfield h item record OPACMSG
subfield l item record LOCATION
subfield m item record MESSAGE
subfield n item record NOTE
subfield o item record OPAC NOTE
subfield q item record ICODE1
subfield r item record ICODE2
subfield s item record STATUS
subfield t item record ITYPE
subfield u item record IMESSAGE
subfield y item record ACCESSION #

* This subfield is required if adding a call number. If the call number is a Dewey call number, subfield z should be 092. If the call number is an LC call number, subfield z should be 090. If the call number is a locally-defined call number scheme, the subfield z should be 099.

Example - wagen item

949 *recs=b;ins=wajv;bn=wa;

949 1 HD9502.I42 |b D65 2002 |l wagen |z 090 |i 39408000002063

Example - waref item

949 *recs=b;ins=wajv;bn=wa;

949 1 LB1028.5 |b .N68 2001 |l waref |z 090 |i 39408000451254


Example - ccgen item

949 *recs=b;ins=ccgs;bn=cc;

949 1 738 |b P442c |z 092 |g 1 |i 32223000615914 |l ccgen |r – |s p |t 012

Example - ccref item

949 *recs=b;ins=ccgs;bn=cc;

949 1 Ref. 338.025 |b Oh3s |c 2003 |z 092 |g 1 |i 32223000599308 |l ccref |r – |s p |t 053