For anyone who may follow us on social media, or has chatted to the team recently, you may be aware that SCIS keeps talking about our ‘big infrastructure upgrade’. This is the result of three years of quantitative and qualitative market research – thank you once again to everyone who has provided feedback along the way.
So here’s a little more detail about what a SCIS infrastructure upgrade means, and why we’re so excited.
Since early 2014, SCIS has been working through its RDA implementation plan. For those who are not familiar with RDA, it stands for Resource Description and Access, the cataloguing standard introduced to replace Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules (AARC2).
SCIS is very pleased to announce the next major step in that plan. From April 2017, SCIS will cease use of the GMD (General Material Designation), a set of deprecated terms used to describe the ‘Type’ of resource.
SCIS will now use the RDA cataloguing standard of ‘Content, media and carrier type’ to describe the resource. This comes after consultation with, and preparation by, the library management systems who distribute SCIS metadata. While use of RDA for type was adopted as a SCIS cataloguing standard in 2013, GMD was maintained in order to support older systems, a move which is no longer necessary.
RDA: Resource Description and Access is the cataloguing standard that replaced the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules in 2013. SCIS has been working on a staged implementation of RDA to manage the impact on school library systems and their users. When SCIS started using the transitional standards on 1 July 2013 the intention was to move completely to RDA on 1 July 2014. This timeline is not going to be possible.
SCIS has delayed the full implementation of RDA for a further 12 months.
Bible and Qur’an headings in SCIS
Descriptions of resources created according to RDA instructions are easier for users to understand. Many of the obscure abbreviations previously used by cataloguers have been abandoned in favour of familiar language. This brings us to access points (both preferred titles and subject headings) for the Bible.
Bible headings were previously constructed in this pattern:
RDA has made two major changes. The abbreviations ‘N.T.’ and ‘O.T.’ are spelled out as ‘New Testament’ and ‘Old Testament’. Individual books of the Bible are entered directly under the heading ‘Bible’. The same list of headings now looks like this:
Bible. New Testament
Bible. Old Testament
Bible stories – Exodus
Bible stories – Gospels
Bible stories – New Testament
Bible stories – Old Testament
The conversion to RDA also provided the opportunity to use the more commonly transliterated form ‘Qur’an’ rather than ‘Koran’ for headings relating to this sacred text. This change does not apply to the transcription of titles or contents which may contain the word ‘Koran’. For example:
Text of the Qur’an
Preferred title: Qur’an
Title statement: The Koran / translated with notes by N.J. Dawood
Work about the Qur’an
Title statement: The Koran : a very short introduction
Subject heading Qur’an – Criticism, interpretation, etc.
Changes in the SCIS database
More than 650 authority records for the Bible and Qur’an, representing headings in over 5,000 bibliographic records were changed in SCIS in January 2014. This was accomplished using the global headings change facility in Voyager, the library management system used by SCIS. The first edition of SCIS authority files in 2014 contains these changed authority records.
‘Use for’ references have been provided for every individual book of the Bible, for example:
UF Bible. New Testament. Luke
Luke (Book of the New Testament)
These references allow users who include ‘New Testament’ or ‘Old Testament’ in their headings search, or search directly for the name of the book to be directed to the preferred heading.
Changes in SCIS subject headings
There were relatively few changes required for SCIS Subject Headings, which contain only selected examples and pointers as to how to construct subject headings for parts of the Bible and stories based on Biblical events. The opportunity was taken to include some extra instructions to assist cataloguers in devising Bible headings, for example:
Bible stories – New Testament
For retold or adapted stories from individual books of the New Testament, see headings such as Bible stories – Luke.
Changes in your library system
Individual library systems vary in their capacity to manage global changes. Depending on the nature of your collection and your library system, these changes may or may not represent a challenge. If you use SCIS authority files and your system is set up to automatically match headings in your database when you import the new authority file, the changes may be quite straightforward. In other cases you may need to ask your library system vendor or your user group for advice on how to manage the impact of these changes.
SCIS, along with the library world globally, is implementing the new Resource Description and Access (RDA) cataloguing standards – the first major change to take place since the Anglo-American Cataloging Rules, second edition (AACR2) were released in 1978.
SCIS Standards for Cataloguing and Data Entry 2013 edition
The standards that govern SCIS cataloguing have been rewritten and the new 2013 edition has now been published. This extensive document available as a PDF download from the SCIS Help page, is written for SCIS cataloguing staff and runs to 209 pages. The sections most affected by RDA include:
Section 2: Descriptive cataloguing
Section 5: Standards for specific formats, and
Section 6: MARC coding: Bibliographic records
SCIS cataloguers will commence using these standards on 1 July 2013. SCIS major decisions
SCIS has consulted with library system providers in Australian and New Zealand school libraries and has decided to move slowly towards full RDA implementation. From 1 July 2013 – 1 July 2014 SCIS will produce hybrid RDA records which continue to use the GMD from AACR2, and which will also retain the 260 Publication field rather than the new 264 field: Production, Publication, Distribution, Manufacture, and Copyright Notice, used by most systems using RDA.
RDA test records
The following records have been added to SCIS so library system providers and SCIS subscribers can test any impact of the change in standards on their systems.
Please note that ISBNs have been removed from these records so they are not accidentally retrieved through SCISWeb or Z39.50. Normal SCIS records will continue to include the ISBN where available.
Judith Way discusses why she saw the need for a digital citizenship blog which reached out to all sectors of her school community. She felt that many students and parents, even if adept at using digital technology and social media, were often unaware of the implications of their digital footprint. She resolved to promote the responsible use of social media and the internet.
Bianca Hewes looks at the traditional classroom and wonders why in a changing world, it remains unchanged despite the creation of virtual learning spaces. She examines the work of Prof. David D Thornburg who identifies four ‘archetypal learning spaces: Campfire, Watering hole, Cave and Life.
Dianne McKenzie discusses how the annual report can be a record of a year’s planning and activity, allowing the Librarian to showcase the diverse roles and activities of the Library. She emphasizes the importance of documenting and collecting data
RDA will be a new standard for resource description and access, designed for the digital world.
Built on foundations established by the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules (AACR), RDA will provide a comprehensive set of guidelines and instructions on resource description and access covering all types of content and media.
RDA will enable users of library catalogues and other systems of information organization to find, identify, select, and obtain resources appropriate to their information needs.
During the period of RDA development, the library and cataloguing world updated some key cataloguing principles and developed some conceptual models for resource discovery. RDA is built on these new conceptual models.
If we remember that the highest principle of the International Cataloguing Principles is the ‘convenience of the user’ RDA has aligned with the ICP principles: find, identify, select, obtain. Through RDA we can practise what we preach and work to improve search results and the way these results are displayed. RDA is very much about the user and functionality; focused on users – not items.
The RDA cataloguing standard is designed precisely for an online environment. RDA’s element set has been clearly defined, and incorporated into the Open Metadata Registry, which is a set of RDF-based controlled vocabularies, and a fundamental piece of technical infrastructure for the Semantic Web.
Renate’s overview led into a presentation by SCIS Cataloguing Team Leader, Pam Kadow, outlining proposed changes to the SCIS Standards for Cataloguing and Data Entry for alignment with RDA commencing the second quarter of 2013.
SCIS is conducting a consultation workshop in Melbourne on Tuesday 4 December 2012 from 9.00-1.00pm. The consultation aims to engage SCIS and its partners in discussion about future priorities in our support of school libraries.
1.00pm SCIS Consultation closes
Participants are encouraged to stay for a light lunch and then join delegates at the keynote session and opening reception for the IDEA 2012 conference at the Sofitel, 25 Collins Street Melbourne.
2.00pm Keynote: The science and technology of learning, Professor Erik Duval, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
3.15pm Afternoon tea
3.45pm Panel: Challenges and opportunities for digital learning including Rhyan Bloor, Digital Education Branch, DEEWR; Rodney Spark, eWorks; Kerri-Lee Krause, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Education), University of Western Sydney and Bevan Doyle, Chief Information Officer, Department of Education Western Australia
During July and August 2010 SCIS cataloguers took advantage of the free trial period to preview Resource Description and Access (RDA), the new standard which is intended to replace the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules (AACR2).
SCIS will make initial preparations for the implementation of RDA by activating new MARC fields in our Voyager library management system when we upgrade to Voyager version 7 during the latter part of 2010. This will allow us to produce test records created according to RDA rules and evaluate the likely impact for schools. We will of course be consulting with school library management system vendors to ensure that any changes to SCIS records are compatible with school library systems.
RDA changes likely to have the most impact on school library systems are the replacement of the GMD with three new MARC fields: 336 (Content type), 337 (Media type) and 338 (Carrier type). For example a DVD title coded according to AACR2 as:
Most of the other RDA changes can be readily accommodated in the MARC fields currently used by SCIS. These changes will impact on data consistency rather than systems. For example in RDA the abbreviations N.T. and O.T. are spelled out as New Testament and Old Testament, but omitted in headings for individual books of the Bible. Thus a heading such as Bible. N.T. Corinthians becomes simply Bible. Corinthians.
Not only that, but the co-publishers of the toolkit (the American Library Association, Canadian Library Association, and CILIP) are offering a free open access period for you to take a look at the new standard.
SCIS will of course be undertaking testing of the toolkit during the open access period, and will also be monitoring the outcomes of the testing being undertaken by the Library of Congress and the National Library of Australia. Rest assured we will not be making any changes to the SCIS standards until we have fully confirmed that the new standard will be fully compatible with school library management systems!
Implementation in Australian and overseas libraries is expected in mid 2011. Internationally, the National Library of Australia is working with the Library of Congress, British Library, and Library and Archives Canada to develop implementation strategies and coordinate implementation dates. Within Australia, the Australian Committee on Cataloguing is preparing a plan for implementation and training.”