NACO > Authority Control Workflow for Yale Catalog Librarians

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Authority Control Workflow for Yale Catalog Librarians

The workflow described below is intended for Yale University Library catalog librarians. It is not intended for other cataloging staff responsible for copy cataloging or for acquisitions staff involved in FASTCAT processing. 


Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What if I get a red warning message in the ExportQ window? <IMPORTANT!>
  2. Which headings should I validated against authority records?
  3. Should I use a 440 or 490/8XX combination for traced series?
  4. When should I import an authority record into Orbis?
  5. When should I create a new authority record in Orbis?
  6. When should I update an authority record in Orbis?
  7. When should I delete an authority record in Orbis?
  8. When should I create a new authority record in OCLC?
  9. When should I update an authority record in OCLC?
  10. When should I export a bibliographic record to MARS using ExportQ?
  11. When should I Ask the Authority Control Coordinator to make a heading correction?
  12. When should I make a heading correction myself?
  13. May I correct headings in the records of other Yale units?
  14. Can I copy and paste headings between Orbis and the Utilities?

NACO Workflow

Step-by-step workflow what NCO-trained catalogers should follow, from  heading verification through authority record creation.


1. What if I get a red warning message in the ExportQ window?

Do not update the bibliographic record! 

You may add new holdings and item records or update existing holdings and item records.

The warning message means that the bibliographic record has been sent to MARS for authorities processing but has not yet been received back and loaded. Any changes that you make to the record will get overlaid. Wait and update the record once the warning message has disappeared.


2. Which headings should I validated against authority records?

LC Full-level, Core-level, and CIP Records / BIBCO Core-level Records

Validate series only. 

Follow DPCC series tracing decisions if they exist (645 field). Otherwise follow LC tracing decisions.

Follow local Yale analysis decisions (644 field) and local Yale classification decisions (646 field) if they exist. Use local Yale classification numbers (090 field) if they exist.

Other Copy

Validate headings for personal names that contain prefixes or compound surnames, music name-title headings, and series. Use your judgment in validating other headings.

When validating series, follow DPCC series tracing decisions if they exist (645 field). Otherwise follow LC tracing decisions.

Follow local Yale analysis decisions (644 field) and local Yale classification decisions (646 field) if they exist. Use local Yale classification numbers (090 field) if they exist.

Original Records

Validate all headings. 

When validating series, follow DPCC series tracing decisions if they exist (645 field). Otherwise follow LC tracing decisions.

Follow local Yale analysis decisions (644 field) and local Yale classification decisions (646 field) if they exist. Use local Yale classification numbers (090 field) if they exist.


3. Should I use a 440 or 490/8XX combination for traced series?

For original cataloging always use a 490/8XX combination for traced series in the bib record, even if this results in duplicating information in those fields.

Following a MARBI Committee (Machine-Readable Bibliographic Information Committee) proposal approved in July 2008, use of the 440 MARC field will become obsolete. YUL has adopted use of the 490/8XX combination for all traced series.


4. When should I import an authority record into Orbis?

Catalogers will occasionally need to import authority records into Orbis in order to update them with local Yale analysis and classification decisions. These records should be imported from LCDB or OCLC.

Importing other authority records into Orbis will generally not be necessary because MARS authorities processing will automatically "claim" the authority records that we need and send them to us for loading. However, catalogers may use judgment in this area (e.g. if it is important to get an authority record into Orbis right away).

Note that there are two categories of authority records that MARS does not provide us: 1) series-like phrase records; 2) reference records. Catalogers may import these into Orbis as they encounter them.


5. When should I create a new authority record in Orbis?

Never!


6. When should I update an authority record in Orbis?

Name authority records should be updated in Orbis only when adding a classification number in the 090 field (or, more rarely, when adding a local note in a 690 field).

Series authority records should be updated in Orbis only when adding information pertaining to local series analysis and classification decisions in the 090, 644, or 646 fields (or, more rarely, when adding a local note in a 690 field).

These fields are protected from overlay. For more information:

  • Updating Existing NARs
  • ​Updating Existing SARs

7. When should I delete an authority record in Orbis?

Delete an authority record in Orbis only if it falls into one of these three categories:

locally-created authority record (record without 010 field) that duplicates a national-level authority record (record with 010 field)

duplicate national-level authority record (record with the same 010 field as another record)

national-level authority record that has been deleted in the national file (the 010 field in one record will be represented in the 010 $z of the other record)  


8. When should I create a new authority record in OCLC?

Yale guidelines specify that new authority records should be created in OCLC and contributed through the NACO program whenever:

  • a heading requires cross references
  • a heading needs to be distinguished from another heading (e.g. by the addition of dates or qualifier)
  • a heading is used on a Yale BIBCO record with encoding level blank
  • a heading is used on a Yale BIBCO record with encoding level 4 (except untraced series)
  • a series or multi-part monograph will be classed together and analyzed
  • a series or multi-part monograph is on standing order
  • research needs to be documented in a 670 field

For more information:

  • Creating Existing NARs
  • Creating Existing SARs

In addition, NACO rules require that a new authority record be created whenever:

  • a heading that is being established contains an unestablished corporate or geographic name used as a qualifier
  • a subordinate body heading that is being established contains an unestablished parent body
  • a name-title heading that is being established contains an unestablished name

In these cases, an additional authority record must be created for the parent body, the body used in the qualifier, or the name portion of the name-title heading.


9. When should I update an authority record in OCLC?

Existing authority records should be updated in OCLC and contributed through the NACO program whenever any change is needed except recording local information in 090, 644, 646, and 690 fields.

For more information: 

  • Updating Existing NARs
  • ​Updating Existing SARs

10. When should I export a bibliographic record to MARS using ExportQ?

Bib Records Created in Orbis:

Export to MARS for authorities processing once the cataloging is completed.

Bib Records Created in OCLC:

Export to MARS for authorities processing once the cataloging is completed and the record has been imported into Orbis.

Bib Records With In-Process NACO/SACO Headings:

Export to MARS for authorities processing once the NACO authority record has been "added" in the OCLC authority file (not the save file).

Export to MARS for authorities processing once the SACO authority record has been approved by LC and appears in the national authority file.

If the cataloger anticipates a long wait for approval, the bib record may be exported ahead of time but should be re-exported once the heading appears in the national authority file. Otherwise, MARS will not be able to send us the authority record.

For more information: Policy on Exporting Bibliographic Records from ORBIS


11. When should I Ask the Authority Control Coordinator to make a heading correction?

Catalogers may ask the Authority Control Librarian to make heading corrections when 20 or more records need to be changed or when a consistent problem with the MARS authorities processing may be indicated. 

Please use the:C


12. When should I make a heading correction myself?

Catalogers should generally make headings changes themselves if fewer than 20 records need to be changed or if special subject or language expertise is required to determine the correct heading.


13. May I correct headings in the records of other Yale units?

Yes, if you are sure that the change is correct (e.g. correcting a typo in a subject heading). If in doubt, refer the problem to the Authority Control Librarian using the Please use the Heading Change request Form.

Two exceptions:

1. Local Subject Headings. Do not change other units' local subject headings without permission. Please refer the problem to the Authority Control Librarian using the web form. Local subject headings are found in the 69X fields and are sometimes called "Special Collection Headings". Examples:

692 14 $a Marcel, Gabriel, $d 1889-1973 $x Presentation inscription to A. Pryce-Jones.
695 04 $a World Christianity $y 2004.
690 #4 $a Incunabula in Yale Library.

2. Linked Headings. Do not change "linked headings" (including tags, indicators, and the $6 link) without permission. Please refer the problem to the Authority Control Librarian using the web form. Linked headings are pairs of headings that begin with $6 (one heading is in a romanized form, the other is in a nonroman form). 

Example (the 700 field and the third 880 field constitute a pair of linked headings):


14. Can I copy and paste headings between Orbis and the Utilities?

Yes! The ability to copy/paste headings between Orbis and the utilities is much improved in Voyager 6.1 (implemented in Dec. 2006). Preliminary testing has shown that diacritics carry over properly when using OCLC Connexion (but the delimiter sign does not). However, not all diacritics have been tested, so please report any that don't copy properly!

Remember to replace the OCLC delimiter sign with the Orbis delimiter sign when pasting an OCLC heading into an Orbis bib record (and vice versa). Remember to delete the delimiter sign when copying a heading into a search box.


NACO Workflow

Step 1: Validate heading in Orbis

Look for an appropriate authority record in Orbis using one of the Staff Heading indexes (most staff will be starting this search from the Authorities Validation box generated when the bib record is saved to the database).

If you find a national-level authority record in Orbis (these records contain an 010 field), use the heading in the bib record. Update the authority record with local analysis or classification decisions if necessary. If national-level updates to the authority record are needed, go to step 5.

If you find a locally-created authority record in Orbis (these records do not contain an 010 field), go to step 2.

If an authority record is not found, go to step 2.

Step 2: Search heading in LCDB

If you find an authority record in LCDB, assume MARS will provide it to us. Import it into Orbis only if it needs to be updated with local analysis and classification decisions. If a locally-created authority record exists in Orbis, delete it.

If national-level updates to the LCDB authority record are needed, go to step 5.

If an authority record is not found, go to step 3.

Step 3: Search heading in a national authorities database

Either of these two national authorities databases may be used:

OCLC authority file (via Connexion cataloging client)

Don't forget to search the heading as both a name or title heading (as appropriate) and as a subject heading. While searching, look for the following information:

  • form of heading used on LC bibliographic records (and the encoding level of any such records)
  • variant headings used on other bib records
  • variant forms of usage in transcribed fields
  • predominant usage (especially if establishing a modern author)

Create the authority record in the OCLC "Online Save File" according to NACO practice.

If a locally-created authority record exists in Orbis, delete it.

If you are not yet independent of NACO review, go to step 6. If you have been granted independence, go to step 8.

Step 5: Update the authority record in OCLC

If national-level updates to the authority record are needed, update the record in the OCLC "Online Save File" according to NACO practice. If you are not yet independent of NACO review, go to step 6. If you have been granted independence, go to step 8.

Step 6: Notify your NACO reviewer

E-mail your NACO reviewer when you have headings that are ready to be looked over. Send no more than ten headings at a time. Do not send another list of headings until you have heard back from your reviewer. The subject line of the message should begin with "NACO" and should include your unit name or unit acronym (e.g. NACO RBT). Send new and updated authority records in one message, but in separate lists.

Include the OCLC save file numbers, the full headings, and any comments that will aid in the review of the records (e.g. cite the rule or LCRI that justifies the choice or form of heading if there might be some question). For updates of existing records, indicate the changes you have made (e.g. 400/1, 670/2 added, 008/29 changed to a). Indicate the variable fields in this manner even though they are not numbered as such in OCLC.

Indicate in the message if BFM (bibliographic file maintenance) will be required in the LC database for any of the headings. For further guidance, see:

Catalogers of materials in JACKPHY languages may need to submit additional information to their reviewer or their funnel project reviewer (e.g. OCLC bib record numbers, photocopy surrogates of any pages from which usage has been transcribed and romanized, etc.).

Go to step 7.

Step 7: Wait for your reviewer's response

Wait for your reviewer to respond by e-mail. For each record sent, the reviewer's response will be one of the following:

  • you may contribute the record
  • you must make corrections to the record and then you may contribute it
  • you must make corrections to the record and then resubmit it for review
  • the reviewer has contributed the record for you

Go to step 9.

Step 9: Export bibliographic record containing the NACO heading to MARS

Once the NACO record has been "added" in OCLC, use the ExportQ program to flag the Orbis bib record for export to MARS.

Note: MARS will not be able to send us the authority record unless the bib record is processed after the NACO record is added to the authority file. 


Document created and maintained by the Authority Control Advisory Committee.

Comments to: Rick Sarcia

Last revised: 11 May 2010

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