Guidelines for determining proper format for scores and score-like material

Music Cataloging at Yale General music cataloging resources

Note: this page was created with music cataloging in mind.

See also When to create a new bibliographic record for music

Input in Scores (type code c) Input in Books (type code a)
Publications of printed music (scores, scores and parts, solo instrumental music). An item with extensive musical examples that are not complete pieces intended for performance (in concert or for instructional purposes) may qualify as a book, not a score. Thematic catalogs; textbooks with extensive musical examples not intended for performance
Opera scores (full scores, vocal scores, collections of arias, etc.) Opera libretti (may contain music of principal arias, but if the principal intent of the publication is presentation of text of the opera, input in books)
Hymnals with music (either harmonized or melody only) Hymnals consisting of text only
Art songs (music as well as text) Art song texts, no music (class in M)
Other songs that would be classed in LC M1627-1998 (popular, patriotic, national songs, etc.) Texts for popular, patriotic, national songs, etc., no music (class in M)
Musical compositions written in chord diagrams or a chord diagram book with enough music in it to be considered a score Chord diagram books that are not intended as musical compositions but as information on playing an instrument
For resources classed MT170-MT950, catalog resources that are predominantly music as scores. Use subject heading subdivisions as a tool in determining the correct format:
Subject subdivision        Format (type code a=books | c=scores)     
Instruction and study       usually a   
Methods a or c
Studies and exercises c
Orchestra studies c
Teaching pieces c
CD-ROM publications of scores (add 006 and 007 for the computer file aspects)  
Methods, instrumental and vocal, consisting largely of studies and exercises and/or teaching pieces
Musical studies and exercises
Methods consisting principally of text with few musical examples
Theses that are scores  
Manuscripts of music and published facsimiles of music manuscripts  
Microform publications of the types of materials listed above Microform publications of the types of materials listed above

In all other cases when resources contain a substantial amount of both text and music, the cataloger should make a judgment as to the primary intent of the resource (exposition with musical examples or presentation of the musical score itself) to determine which is more appropriate.

SOURCES: RLIN Update, vol. 5, p. 2 (1981), (rev., M. Koth, 8-17-95); MOUG Newsletter, no. 69, p. 16, no. 80, 23.