In 1984 the academic libraries in the Association for Higher Education of North Texas consortium used the RLG Conspectus to gather data concerning their current collecting patterns. The OCLC archival tapes of the participating libraries were used to generate collection data for each Conspectus subject group. This paper describes the problems encountered in editing the Conspectus for use in the project and analyzes the Conspectus as a collection evaluation tool. Approximately three-fifths of the original Conspectus headings required editorial attention. The results of the study suggest that the Conspectus subject breakdown may be too specific for libraries smaller than ARL institutions.
To obtain data on its collection strengths within subject fields, a shelflist count was made in 1966 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison library. The methodology was based on a report prepared at Northwestern University as part of its planning for a new library building. The University of Wisconsin library continued with biennial counts in 1968, 1970, and 1972. The library at the University of California, Berkeley, followed suit, doing initial shelflist counts in 1971 and 1973. These became, in conjunction with those at the University of Wisconsin, the impetus for the National Shelist Count. The library at Berkeley assumed leadership of the project in 1973, and three reports were issued in 1973, 1975, and 1977. In 1985 the RTSD office took over direction of the project. The origins of the National Shelflist Count and the criteria employed for it are outlined.
The National Shelflist Count project was organized thirteen years ago under the auspices of the RTSD Chief Collection Development Officers of Large Research Libraries Discussion Group. The purpose of the project was to collect and publish comparative data about the general strength and rates of growth of major North American research collections. Three counts were published, and data collected for three subsequent years, but a complete report has not appeared since 1977. The project faltered for two reasons. First the data became increasingly difficult to input and manipulate as the size of the report increased, and secondly, arrangements for collecting the data and producing the final report were informal and, eventually, inneffective. In. 1983 the discussion group chair appointed a three-member taskforce to reconsider the history, purpose, and use of the National Shelflist Count and to make the recommendations for its future. This paper describes the National Shelf list Count and reports the recommendations of the task force.
To determine if backlogs of uncataloged monographs still exist and to learn about methods of controlling and/or reducing any such arrearages, a questionnaire was sent to the 117 members of the Association of Research Libraries. Questions were asked about the size of the arrearage, storage, arrangement, physical and bibliographic access and about the role of automation in reducing or increasing the arrearage. Strategies for access described in the responses included a publicly accessible location for the materials, which are available for circulation, or access through temporary files with the materials available after priority cataloging. To reduce arrearages some libraries are using minimal-level cataloging. The discrepancy between rate of acquisitions and catalog department staff levels was identified as the major cause of arrearages. Bibliographic utilities have proved helpful in coping with arrearages and other automation systems are beginning to he useful.
Use of microfilm and ficrofiche is common today and generally accepted in most types of North American libraries. Millions of items are now available in microform, including source material such as archival or manuscript collections, government documents, and specialized materials such as doctoral dissertations. The ever-increasing number of new publications and the amount of paperwork in our modern society are requiring an even greater use of micrographics technology. Thus, original publication in microform is now occurring on an unprecedented scale.
Beixin Sun is the deputy director of the Automation Development Department of the National Library of China. In 1982 she spent six months in the United States, primarily at the Library of Congress where she made a comprehensive study of MARC The members of the People to People library and Information Science Delegation to the People's Republic of China were much interested in this account, which Beixin Sun presented at the National Library of China on April 17, 1985. She has kindly agreed to share it with LRTS readers.
Because of the organizational weakness and uncontrolled growth of Class Z, librarians and library users may have difficulty in locating bibliographies in institutions using the Library of Congress classification system. A brief history of the Z schedule is presented, followed by discussion of recent Library of Congress modifications in the treatment of subject bibliography and reactions to these changes. Included also is a schedule, developed for use in a university library, for political and social sciences subject bibliography (Z7161-7166), giving alternate class numbers for the systematic placement of bibliographies in these subjects. The Library of Congress is urged to develop standard locations for bibliographies in the subject schedules.