LRTS v 40, no. 1, January 1996

The Impact of Automation on Job Requirements and Qualifications for Catalogers and Reference Librarians in Academic Libraries

Hong Xu

The purpose of this study is to trace the impact of automation on job requirements and qualifications of catalogers and reference librarians in academic libraries by comparing and analyzing job advertisements from 1971 to 1990. Four periods were identified to reflect the influence of each important library automation development on job descriptions. Chi-square tests were used to see whether there are significant differences between catalog librarians and reference librarians with regard to duties and qualifications in each period; and whether there are significant differences in professional duties and qualifications for catalog librarians and reference librarians over the periods. With the development of automation in libraries, the requirements of previous work experiences for catalogers and reference librarians have become more similar, increasing needs for computer skills can be found in both groups, and a shortage of catalogers and greater demand for reference librarians have led to more entry-level positions being posted in both groups. There still remain differences between catalogers and reference librarians in major responsibilities and knowledge or skills needed.

Binding Conventions for Music Materials

Edie Tibbits

Many procedures common in the binding of books are not feasible for use with music scores. A small sample of academic libraries was surveyed about many of the special considerations required in the establishment of local binding procedures for music scores. Strictly from a preservation standpoint. many practices of the libraries in this survey sample are not sound. There is a growing level of communication among music publishers and music librarians about the "preservability" of published music. Carefully established binding practices are of paramount importance if a music collection is to serve the public of the music library for an extended length of time.

The Worst of the Worst: Celebrating Twenty Years of the Worst Serial Title Change of the Year Award

Margaret Mering and Pamela Simpson

Serials librarians untangle some of the most complicated bibliographic control problems. The year 1994 marked the twentieth anniversary of the best known attempt at consciousness raising: the Worst Serial Title Change of the Year Award. Among significant efforts to lower the number of possible title changes was the implementation of the second edition of the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules. Librarians continue to work on initiatives to improve communication with publishers and to increase awareness of problems caused by title changes. While much work has been done to decrease the number of new bibliographic records for title changes, there remains room for improvement and further streamlining. We propose that the United States Newspaper Program's cataloging guideline -- which specifies that if a title change lasts for less than one year and then reverts back to the previous title, the change does not require a new record -- be extended to all serials. In addition to the changes proposed above, more empirical research is needed to aid serial catalogers in handling title changes.

What Users Really Think: How They See and Find Serials in the Arts and Sciences

Loanne Snavely and Katie Clark

New users encounter numerous stumbling blocks in their search for serials. Beginning with the index, understanding the citation, searching the online catalog for the serial record, interpreting the holdings, and finally locating the item on the shelf are all steps that must be negotiated. Each step presents a variety of problems that users bring to the reference desk. The authors suggest user-oriented solutions relating to cataloging practices, screen design, and linking local holdings to periodical databases. Increased collaboration between librarians on the front lines and those creating the records and providing the access is essential for meeting end user needs.