I teach a cataloging course for paraprofessionals in a library technology program. What I have done in the past is alter the title pages of the materials to be cataloged, or made up titles pages that included the elements I wished to test on. It has worked in the past, but I do have those students who try to find matches in other libraries' online catalogs and provide information not present in the title page provided in the exam.
On the non-English materials, I would like to know if the students are expected to provide subject analysis. Also, is one of the requirements for library school entrance a second language?
Fresno City College
From: Discussion List for issues related to cataloging & metadata education & training on behalf of Buzz Haughton
Sent: Wed 4/8/2009 9:22 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [eduCAT] Final exam for LS 506
I'm a long-time cataloger at UC Davis (since 1980). I was asked by Elizabeth
Aversa, dean of the School of Library and Information Studies at the U of
AL, to teach an online elective class in cataloging and classification for
the spring semester. I began in early January, and the semester will
conclude at the end of this month.
60 percent of the students' grade will come from their performance on the
final exam. I plan to scan a minimum of ten and a maximum of twenty title
pages, covers, containers, etc. of various formats (books, serials, CDs,
videos, DVDs, software) and ask the students to catalog at least ten to the
test account SLIS has in OCLC Connexion.
My problems are these: first, at least eighty percent of the cataloging I do
consists of originals, and at least eight percent of that isn't in English.
When I queried my students about their comfort level working with
non-English-language materials, most said okay so long as it is in standard
western European languages, but a few insisted they would not want to do
My second problem is that it's going to be difficult to find materials,
particularly in English, that don't already have copy. I'm not sure if I
should trust my students not to peek. ;-) A cataloger friend thinks I should
comb Connexion for old copy (i.e. pre-AACR2), so that the descriptive
cataloging, at least, would need retrofitting according to what I've taught
I've posed these two questions to Dr. Aversa and Dr. Steven MacCall, a
professor at SLIS. Dr. Aversa hasn't responded yet; Dr. MacCall thinks I
shouldn't hesitate to give my students non-English things to catalog.
Do any of you have opinions you'd like to share with me?
100 N West Quad
Davis CA 95616-5292
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