Report of the
AALL Representative to the American Library Association
Association for Library Collection and Technical Services
Cataloging and Classification Section
Subject Analysis Committee (SAC)
Midwinter Meeting, San Antonio, January 2006
Annual Meeting, New Orleans, June 2006
Fordham Law School Library
I very much enjoyed my first year as the AALL representative to the Subject Analysis Committee. I attended all the committee and subcommittees meetings and programs and learned that while most of the work is done by the subcommittees, it all comes together at the committee meetings when the SAC chair, the subcommittees, and the various liaisons submit their reports.
The 2006 Midwinter minutes and reports are available on the SAC website at http://www.ala.org/ala/alctscontent/catalogingsection/
catcommittees/subjectanalysis/subjectanalysis.htm. The 2006 Annual meeting documents will be posted online at a later date. Following is a summary of SAC activities and highlights from Lynn El-Hoshy's LC reports.
Joint SAC/PCC Task Force on Library of Congress Classification Training
At ALA Annual, the task force presented Understanding LC Classification: A Preview of an ALCTS/PCC Workshop. The program opened with a presentation of the course outline followed by a demonstration of one course section dealing with the elements of LC call numbers (class number + book number).
The task force is planning a one day run-through at ALA Midwinter 2007 and a two day pre-conference workshop at Annual 2007.
Subcommittee on FAST (Faceted Application of Subject Terminology)
FAST, cooperatively developed by OCLC and the Library of Congress, is a simplified subject vocabulary derived from LCSH. The subcommittee on FAST continues to explore issues related to FAST implementation as well as to advise the FAST development team on scope and suitability of FAST vocabulary and on improving FAST documentation.
The FAST authority file can be accessed at http://fast.oclc.org. The file currently includes records for personal and corporate names, geographic names, and topical and form headings. Within the next year the FAST team expects to complete conference/meetings and uniform titles facets.
The program FAST: A New System of Subject Access for Cataloging and Metadata was presented at ALA Annual and is available, along with other project related information, at http://www.oclc.org/research/projects/fast/
Subcommittee on Semantic Interoperability
There is an increasing need for knowledge organization systems to manage access to resources across multiple languages and controlled vocabularies. A good design should achieve not only interoperability but also minimize loss of meaning in search results.
The subcommittee's charge was to survey the current state of international interoperability projects that focus on subject and/or classification data and to produce a document outlining "best practices."
The subcommittee submitted its final report to SAC. The report is available at http://www.und.nodak.edu/dept/library/Departments/abc/SACSEM-Compiled.htm
New SAC Subcommittees
The committee is in the process of forming two new subcommittees, one to plan a program for ALA Annual 2007 on local procedures for handling form/genre headings and one to examine strengths and weaknesses of LCSH with a view to making recommendations for making it more cost effective. Volunteers for the subcommittees were identified at ALA Annual. Additional details will be announced as they become available.
Highlights from reports submitted by Lynn El-Hoshy, Library of Congress Cataloging Policy and Support Office (CPSO)
- Major Subject Headings Changes. "Vietnamese Conflict, 1961-1975" was revised to Vietnam War, 1961-1975; "Biological diversity" was changed to Biodiversity; and "Asia, Southeastern" was revised to Southeast Asia.
- Library of Congress Subject Headings, 29th edition was just published and includes approved subject headings and changes up to and including Weekly List 05-35 (approved August 31, 2005).
- Form/Genre Headings. CPSO has begun work on the implementation of form/genre headings in bibliographic and authority records. The first to be tackled are in the areas of moving images and music. The project on music terms, done in collaboration with OCLC and the Music Library Association, will implement MARC 21 X55 fields (Genre/Form Term) and may result in the first use of 155 authority records for LCSH vocabulary.
- Geographic Authority Record Enhancements. OCLC and CPSO staff developed guidelines and procedures for enhancing a selection of name authority records for jurisdictions by adding 043 fields with geographic area codes and 781 fields showing their geographic subdivision forms. As of early April approx. 83,060 records that met the project criteria were changed to add either field 781 or field 667 with a subject usage note regarding use as a subdivision.
- KBM and KBP. Extensive cataloging and reclassification projects, especially in the field of Islamic law, led to some changes of the principles formulated during the development of the schedules and to a number of refinements, conceptual realignments, or changes in classification procedures. For background information and guidance for application of KBM and KBP see Jolande Goldberg's Comparative Development of the Classes for Religious Law: the Abrahamic Tradition: Notes on Design and Suggested Use of the Schedules available at http://www.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/KBIntro2.pdf
- New Editions of Classification Schedules. 2006 editions of Class J (Political science), class PL-PM (Languages of Eastern Asia, Africa, Oceania; Hyperborean, Indian, and Artificial Languages), and class Z (Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources) are now available.
- Classification Proposals. A new system for automating the classification proposal process is being developed. This summer LC will be looking for SACO volunteers to participate in beta testing.
Other LC News
- Free PDF Version of Selected Publications. The following are available at http://www.loc.gov/cds/freepdf.html, beginning with issues published after January 1, 2006: Cataloging Service Bulletin, CONSER Cataloging Manual updates, CONSER Editing Guide updates, Descriptive Cataloging Manual updates, Library of Congress Rules Interpretations updates, MARC 21 Format documentation updates, and Subject Cataloging Manual: Subject Headings updates.
- Acquisitions and Bibliographic Access Directorate (ABA) is planning the reorganization of the acquisitions and bibliographic access divisions into seven new divisions: five along geographic lines and the other two for Overseas Office Administration and the combined Collaborative Programs, Standards, and Training (including CDS and CPSO).
- ABA Website Redesign. To better meet the needs of catalogers and others users, the Office of Strategic Initiative is now working with ABA to redesign the entire top level of the site currently at http://www.loc.gov/catdir/.
- Much more information about LC is posted at each ALA meeting. Check out full LC updates at http://www.loc.gov/ala.