AUTHORITY VALIDATION AT SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY LIBRARY

Subject headings

For both SU general collections and for SCRC cataloging, accept only LC Subject Headings in Bibliographic records. The second indicator should always be 0. For 655, the second indicator can be 7 if $2 lcgft is present.

If there are other subject headings (NLM, NASA, Canadian, other foreign language) in addition to LCSH, delete the non LC headings.

If there are other subject headings and no LCSH, remove the non-LC headings and devise at least 1 LC heading. Pass to a supervisor if needed.

When LC Subject headings are present, use the OCLC control headings function. It will verify most subject heading strings and avoid the partial heading validation problems in SUMMIT as well as changing any "see-references" to the correct heading. When you save records to SUMMIT, many subjects fall into the partial validation situation; because OCLC control headings has been done, these messages may be ignored. However, "Nonexistant heading" messages must be examined.

Name headings

Name headings may either be controlled on OCLC or verified using SUMMIT validation. SUMMIT's authority file is a few weeks out of date compared to that on OCLC, but for most records, this fact does not matter.

For names that validate:

  • If in doubt, verify that the name is appropriate to the item being catalogued. This is especially important with common names.
  • If there is a name conflict, pass to a supervisor.

For names that do not validate:

  • If the name is unique to SUMMIT, no action needed.
  • If there is a name conflict, pass to a supervisor.

Voyager’s Authority control messages

NONEXISTANT HEADING

There are several reasons a heading generates this message. All non-LC or inappropriately coded names create this message. Check the heading for typos. A few headings that fail validation are perfectly good headings that haven't made it into our authority file. A cataloger should NEVER just assume the heading is good and keep on going. Staff should search the authority file on OCLC to determine if the heading is valid. If an authority record is found for the heading and the Authority record is not in Summit, let your supervisor know. For subjects, try to develop an alternative heading that covers the concept. If Unsuccessful, give the record to a supervisor who will assign a new valid heading. For names, search the authority file and see if another form is authorized.

PARTIAL VALIDATION

Most subject headings fall victim to partial validation. Most heading strings don't have exact matches in the authority file. Most are probably fine. Check for typos. If the heading “looks” OK let it go. Use your best judgement. If you have any doubts, refer it to a supervisor.

COSMETIC DIFFERENCES

This message can be a useful tool : incorrect delimiters, incorrect capitalization, incorrect inclusion of an initial article can generate this message. Most problems need to be corrected. Staff should make appropriate corrections to the heading when they see this message. It is often easiest to copy and paste the form from the authority record into the bibliographic record.

SEE REFERENCES

This message sometimes indicates a problem. Check the authority record to determine if there is a valid See Reference, if there is change heading in the bibliographic record to the correct form.

SUMMARY OF WARNINGS

Examples are in record for “Cataloger's life” Summit #1572656

1. Incorrect headings will partially validate Zen Buddh -- History. This partially validates because the intitial text string is in an authorized heading.

2. Incorrect tags will validate. If the text in field is correct. It will not catch a name in a 651.

3. Cosmetic differences sometimes are more than cosmetic. Capitalization, and comas, also different (incorrect) delimiters are included as cosmetic differences.

4. Non relevant See Also references are retrieved. See example of Community development, Urban | United States.

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