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Good morning and thank you to everyone for making yesterday's
discussions so wide-ranging and lively. We're hoping to have another day
of RDA talk today but first please find below a summary of what was
covered yesterday. Following this email, we will post the topics for
discussion this morning.

 

Thurstan

 

The e-forum today looked at planning and preparation for implementing
RDA in the morning before moving on to training issues in the afternoon.
This is just a brief summary of the discussions during the first day.

 

The CIG e-forum got started with initial introductions and then
considered RDA implementation plans. Several contributors reported that
their institutions had already implemented RDA or were in the process of
doing so over the next three months to two years. Some implementations
have focussed on particular types of material, such as monographs in the
first instance, with implementation for other material types such as
serials being planned to take place subsequently. Several contributors
reported that, although they have not fully yet implemented RDA, they
have begun accepting RDA records from external sources. Many
contributors also stated that they are continuing to accept AACR records
from external sources where no RDA equivalent is available.   

 

The e-forum moved on to discuss who was involved in the decision making
process for implementing RDA. Several contributors reported that this
required consultation with senior management; cataloguing team members
need to be kept up to date on developments over time and system staff
where necessary. Justifications of the need for implementation included
the argument that  alternatives to RDA records are sometimes no longer
available from deriving sources.  Several responders commented that RDA
implementation was important in the context of linked data developments.
A lack of staff time and competing projects such as retrospective
conversion programmes were cited as being obstacles to RDA
implementation.

 

The morning session closed with a consideration of systems issues in
relation to RDA implementation. This addressed both the configuration of
library management systems and RDA Toolkit subscription. As regards LMS
configuration, some challenges have arisen in terms of displaying the
264 and 33X fields, and likewise the 1XX/7XX $e and 700-730 $i
subfields.  The incompatibility of 245 $h with RDA  has also sometimes
caused problems in terms of record display. Conversion of name headings
from AACR to RDA is a further consideration. Many of these issues may be
addressed by reconfiguring existing systems but, where this is not
feasible, they may only be resolved as part of a system migration. LMS
suppliers may also provide automated fixes to support the retrospective
amendment of bibliographic data and conversion of headings in line with
RDA. The full practical benefit of certain fields such as the 33X will
only be realised once a significant accumulation of RDA data has taken
place. A hybrid environment now exists in which both RDA and AACR
records exist alongside each other on many catalogues.

 

The level of RDA Toolkit subscription varies widely between
institutions, depending on the number of staff who require access.
Several responders reported that a limited number of Toolkit licenses
had been purchased for purposes of reference, or that access was limited
to cataloguing staff. Many reported that they had taken advantage of
trial RDA Toolkit subscriptions. Budgetary constraints are a limiting
factor on subscribing to the RDA Toolkit. Print and e-book versions of
the Toolkit are available as well as the online alternative. However,
the online version is updated more frequently and it includes ancillary
content such as workflows and mappings which are not provided with other
versions.   

 

The e-forum's afternoon session considered matters of RDA training.
Several contributors reported that their training had consisted of a
general introduction to staff, followed by tailored sessions for
individual cataloguers or teams of cataloguers. Some responders added
that they had provided FRBR training to cataloguers as well as
paraprofessional and non cataloguing staff. However, questions  arose as
to whether training paraprofessionals and non cataloguing staff in in
RDA's underlying concepts was a worthwhile exercise. Such training may
be desirable for background information, but it is also important to
focus training on what is most relevant to the recipient's role. A
general overview of RDA principles, accompanied by examples of
application and differences from AACR2, may be all that is required.
References to further reading on FRBR could be included in the training
given to paraprofessionals and non cataloguing staff an opportunity to
find out more about the subject if they wish to do so. A familiarity
with FRBR is most relevant to cataloguers in terms of helping them
navigate RDA's structure and understand its vocabulary. 

 

Before closing the afternoon session, the e-forum discussed the
advantages of creating an RDA training environment in order to support
practise cataloguing. Creating such an environment as part of an LMS may
be a useful means of separating practise data from data on a live
catalogue. It can  also be useful in terms of testing LMS configuration.