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Cataloging Manual

Bibliographic Standards for Non-MARC Records

General Principles

  1. Non-MARC records should be suppressed from OhioLINK. See Appendix A.
  2. Non-MARC records should minimally contain author and title. Other information strongly suggested including are ISBN, publisher, and date.
  3. There are limitations to the display in the WebOPAC if using Non-MARC records in regards to the title field. A MARC 245 tag is required for all title entries if it is intended for the title to display in a keyword search. If the 245 is not present, a keyword search will retrieve results, but no hyper-linked title will display to allow for navigation to the full bibliographic record. This generally impacts retrieval of items on order and course reserve.
  4. If not using a library-specific non-MARC template, be sure to specify a location in the bibliographic record.

Reserve Materials Records

When materials to be placed on reserve are not owned by the specific OPAL library, brief bibliographic records should be added for these materials. Libraries are encouraged to use the Reserve Bib templates or library-specific reserve templates for creating bibliographic records. If you are not using templates, make certain to suppress these brief records from OhioLINK.

Order Records

— Adapted from OPAL Acquisitions Policy, May 2000

The OPAL Acquisitions Committee has assembled the following policies in an attempt to provide a standard format for acquisitions functions.

  1. If the full bibliographic record is not already in OPAL, a brief bibliographic record for the item is acceptable. A full OCLC record is not necessary at this time, since it is difficult to choose the appropriate record without the item in hand.
  2. If the full bibliographic record is already in OPAL, before attaching an order record or check-in record, verify that there is an EXACT item match. An EXACT match is one where the author, title, ISBN, and publisher and date are the same. If the item being ordered is the paperback edition, and the bibliographic record only has the ISBN for the cloth edition, create a new brief bibliographic record.
  3. Whenever possible, a brief bibliographic record needs to contain the title, the ISBN, the author, the publisher and the publication date. Any additional information to aid in proper identification, such as a series title, is acceptable. The format for the brief bibliographic record needs to follow OCLC format as much as possible. Here are some guidelines:



    • Only the first word and proper names are capitalized
    • Title with no subtitle: [main title] [period]
    • Omit initial articles.
    • Example: Philosophy of language.
    • Title with subtitle: [main title] [space] [colon] [space] [subtitle] [period]
    • Example: Florence Nightingale : mystic, visionary, healer.


    • Omit all dashes
    • Example: 0198752504


    • last name first
    • Name with no middle initial/name: [last name] [comma] [first name] [period]
    • Example: Ardagh, Philip.

    Publisher & Date

    • [publisher] [comma] [year published] [period]
    • Example: Columbia University Press, 1998.



    • Only the first word and proper names are capitalized
    • Title with no subtitle: [main title] [period]
    • Omit initial articles.
    • Example: Dancing.
    • Title with subtitle: [main title] [space] [colon] [space] [subtitle] [period]
    • Example: In country : folk songs of Americans in the Vietnam War.


    • Omit all dashes
    • Example: 0783231687

    Publisher & Date

    • [publisher] [comma] [year published] [period]
    • Example: Bureau of National Affairs, 1998.
  4. Libraries are encouraged to use the order bib templates available in OPAL as a guide for following proper format.
  5. If an error or oversight is found in another library’s brief bibliographic record, correct the problem only if you are absolutely certain that you are correcting an error and not changing the original intent of the record. If there is any uncertainty, contact the library and allow them to review and perhaps correct the situation.
  6. When the material arrives, the brief bibliographic record must be overlaid with a full bibliographic record, or the order record must be transferred to a full bibliographic record.

Government Documents

In line with the item No. 3 from the General Principles, “Duplicate records should be avoided” libraries receiving government documents, whether as a depository or buying individual items need to consider how they fit into the general workflow of cataloging.

What you need to know

If your library receives Marcive CRDP records: Consult the specific procedures found on the Gov Docs page. These libraries include Hiram, Heidelberg, Mount Union, Muskingum, and Otterbein.

If you receive documents but are not part of the participating Marcive libraries in OPAL, pay attention. Please review “Why non Marcive libraries should also use Marcive records?” on the Gov Docs page. Many of your documents may have bibliographic records loaded into OPAL without you needing to download records from OCLC individually. Marcive loads brief records weekly, and full records that overlay brief records monthly. You can tell these records from some identifiers: Certain suppression codes used only for the Marcive records, u, m, n; 040 will contain MVI ; 086 will have a SuDoc number.

Duplicate records must be avoided. You can help do this by attaching your item record to the Marcive bib record even if it is a brief record. Do not overlay the brief record, as this will create problems for the loading of the full Marcive records. Rest assured that it will be overlaid with a full bibliographic record in time. Never delete a Marcive bib record without items. They are waiting for Marcive libraries to attach items to them.

In the case that you aren’t certain that the brief record is accurate for your item, download the appropriate record from OCLC. We’ll let judgment determine preference for GPO or DLC records, keeping in mind that Marcive will use the GPO record.

If the same OCLC record is later used by Marcive, it should eventually come back for you to resolve in the duplicate record lists that will be sent to catalogers periodically and you should be alert to resolve these, since duplicates are the responsibility of the non-Marcive libraries. All OPAL libraries benefit from having records for government documents in the catalog and available so we all have a responsibility for insuring that Marcive records are loaded with the fewest possible problems.

On the Fly Records

Use the “Bib on the Fly”, “Item on the Fly” or library-specific on-the-fly templates in OPAL to create temporary records for materials not represented in the OPAL database during the check-out process. Doing so will ensure that the records are properly suppressed from the OPAL and OhioLINK catalogs.

Once the item is returned, the on-the-fly bibliographic record should be upgraded, overlaid or retained as a non-MARC brief bibliographic record. Any accompanying on-the-fly item records should be upgraded from on-the-fly (by removing the IMESSAGE), deleted and/or transferred to an appropriate bibliographic record.


Any equipment (keys, laptops, headphones, dry erase markers etc.) should be cataloged using either a specific equipment location for your institution or an equipment ITYPE such as the “Reserved Equipment (local circ)” ITYPE 54 or ITYPES 78-81, which can be defined locally according to your needs. This enables us to separate equipment from curriculum supporting resources for circulation statistics and reports.