CRCC on RDA and the RDA Toolkit

The Continuing Resources Cataloging Committee shares its results from their informal test of RDA and the RDA Toolkit:

Results of the CRCC Informal RDA Testing Task Force – January 6, 2011
Prepared by Jennifer Young and Valerie Bross, Co-Chairs

The Continuing Resources Cataloging Committee was initially formed during AACR2 implementation to be a conduit for feedback on the rule changes. The U.S. RDA Test Coordinating Committee and the ALCTS Continuing Resources Section Exec Board have asked the CRCC to provide this service again with the proposed implementation of RDA.
Charge of the CRCC Informal RDA Testing Task Force:
• To gather from the ALA continuing resources cataloging community feedback and comments to be submitted to the U.S. RDA Test Coordinating Committee about RDA
• To gather bibliographic and authority records to be submitted to the Library of Congress as part of the testing process
• To provide access to the RDA Toolkit for informal testers
• All testers must be members of ALA
Parameters of the test:
25 Continuing Resources catalogers – 15 testers, 10 reviewers
Contributed 63 bibliographic records and 43 authority records
Testing period – Oct. 11-Dec. 21, 2010
Testers were asked to submit five records; Reviewers were asked to review ten.
No official training was given. Participants heavily used the training materials and documentation available from the Library of Congress as well as the RDA webinars from ALA Publishing to become familiar with RDA and the Toolkit. In addition, CONSER invited CRCC participants to an RDA testing orientation Webinar; and the CRCC organized one logistics orientation and two informal “office hours” sessions for participants.
Breakdown of bibliographic records submitted:
• Original serial – 26
• Maintenance, serial – 23
• Maintenance, integrating resource – 1
• Copy cataloging – 12
• Serial changed to unnumbered series – 1
Breakdown of authority records submitted:
RDA originals
o Corporate name – 18
o Conference name – 2
o Family name – 1
o Personal name – 1
AACR2 authorities with RDA form in 7XX
o Corporate name – 23
o Series – 1
o Personal name – 1
Comments about the Toolkit:
Way too slow and difficult to navigate. Would like better integration of various types of documentation into the Toolkit. Searching RDA frequently delivers too many results.
Comments about RDA:
For both questions regarding the difficulty of creating RDA bibliographic and authority records, all respondents had trouble understanding the content of the cataloging instructions. Respondents also had difficulty selecting among the options in the cataloging instructions and with the coding/tagging of records.
The majority of participants thought that RDA would have a negative impact on local operations due to workflows & training. However, participants thought the impact would lessen as catalogers become more familiar with the code. There was also some concern about the impact of RDA on staff training and retirements.
Creating records using RDA took more time than AACR2 but most felt that it would lessen over time.
Implementation of RDA:
The question about implementation of RDA within the US brought forth a very divided response.
• Yes – 1
• Yes with changes – 5
• No – 2
• Ambivalent – 6 (and the consensus vote)
Most respondents saw the need for moving away from AACR2 and possibly MARC to enable our data to be more flexible and dynamic. However, RDA needs to be changed to be able to meet those needs of the continuing resources community. Concerns were also brought up about the deficiencies of FRBR in dealing with continuing resources and how RDA doesn’t really address these issues. Also, while no one reported that their ILS was unable to accept new MARC RDA coding, the ability of their ILS to be able to display or use the new coding in a useful manner was in doubt. Until ILS vendors make their ILS’ more dynamic, having more dynamic data seems of little use.


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