I am forwarding the following on behalf of Danny Joudrey who has been
receiving the discussion, but who cannot, for some reason, get his message
to go through. --Arlene
Date: Wed, 14 Jun 2006 20:11:41 -0400
From: Daniel N Joudrey <[log in to unmask]>
While it is true that most schools (37/56 LIS schools) require an
organization of information class as part of their requirements rather
than a cataloging course (15/56), I don't think that hope is completely
lost. I am working on the five year follow-up to my cataloging education
study from 2000, and here are few tidbits:
Every ALA-accredited LIS school in the US & Canada is teaching at least
one cataloging or org course.
224 org/cataloging courses were offered by the schools. (The raw number is
somewhat higher than the 199 total in the earlier study, but that was US
only. With Canada, it would have been 231, meaning a decrease of 7 courses
in total between the early study and now.)
The average number of org/cataloging courses per school is 4.
Thirty-six LIS school teach 4 or more courses in cataloging/org (and seven
of those teach 6 or more courses!).
All in all, org courses have increased from 30 in 2000 to 40 in 2005-6,
but basic cataloging (Cat & Class, Bibliographic Control, Cataloging I,
etc.) has NOT been greatly reduced.
There has been an increase in the number of metadata courses. But
surprisingly, there were also two more descriptive cataloging courses in
2006 than in 2000. (A pleasant surprise!)
From the data I have collected, the courses in the most danger seems to be
indexing and abstracting -- the number of those courses has decreased by
13 in the last five years.
In terms of my (short) experience at Simmons (my first year as a
cataloging professor), we require an Org course. But in that course, I do
have the students learn ISBD punctuation and the basics of authority
control. Unfortunately, I only have 1 week to discuss description (ISBD,
AACR2, Dublin Core, TEI headers, etc.) and one week for access points and
authority control. In a 14-week semester, there is just too little time to
cover all you need/want to cover. Every semester, something new can be
added to the list of things we want all of our students to know about
organizing information, yet, nothing can be easily taken out of the
course. My required intro course is stuffed to the seams. (In the Cat &
Class course, however, we spend several weeks on description and several
weeks on authority work.)
The good news, at least at Simmons, is that the cataloging courses are
filled each semester. We are talking now about how to best offer more
cataloging courses to our students, rather than on how to eliminate them.
The only problem with getting students excited about cataloging is: where
are they going to find entry-level jobs without "three to five years of