Last week for 3 days I took a class on assigning LC call numbers. The class was one of the many OCLC offers throughout the year. This class was offered through them by the Midwest Collaborative for Library Services in Michigan. The instructor was Dawn Swanson, a technical services librarian at Kettering University. Because Kettering is largely a engineering & science university, many of the examples & exercises dealt with scientific title cataloging. I found this somewhat frustrating because special collections doesn’t have many titles in these area. There were about 15 of us in the class. Tuesday we covered the history of the LC classification system, the breakdown of the LC classes, the uses the Classification Web program, and the Cutter number table. Exercises at the end of the day included giving us a title & having us come up with the class number, the other exercise we did was to practice assigning the cutter number to authors & titles. Wednesday started off with exercises where we had to come up with the entire call number using classification web & OCLC authority records. This got somewhat frustrating for me because all the exercises were for scientific titles. While I understand that the philosophy is the same for cataloging all subjects, having some literature titles would have been more helpful to my work. Thursday we started working with corporate headings and did some exercises related to them. We also had some subject headings that we had to assign call numbers. We then used that exercise to help with using OCLC records & assigning numbers to specific records. These specific records didn’t have call numbers so we were to assign them using the previous exercise. I felt I did solid B work on all the exercises. While the exercises & examples might have been in subjects I wasn’t familiar with, I felt that I got a good understanding & grasp of the workings of call numbers. My main reason for taking the class was to learn how to create call numbers for some backlog titles. Some of the titles have OCLC records but because the only holding may be in an European library, they have no LC call number. After this class, I now feel confident that I can go through these titles & catalog them so they can be accessible.
Thursday, November 17, 2011 4:15 pm