MARC Review Cataloging checks


All reviews created with MARC Review or MARC Global may be saved for future use/re-use. This saving of reviews has always been possible in both utilities.

Now, these saved reviews may be used in MARC Report–both in Record/Edit mode, and in Batch mode. This effectively allows each user to construct their own cataloging checks. As a result, we have named this feature 'MARC Review Cataloging Checks' (or 'MR Cataloging checks').

Validation vrs Cataloging Checks

In MARC Report, the user is able to customize validation by using the 'Local Validation data' editor. Validation is effective for single MARC elements, such as a tag, an indicator, a subfield, or a fixed field code. If you simply want to flag a subfield, for example, and that subfield is not going to be flagged by the default MARC21 validation tables, then 'Local Validation' is by far and away the most efficient means to do it.

However, validation is unable to inspect the data in variable fields (pattern matching), or to compare MARC elements in multiple fields/subfields, or to search for 'not' conditions. For this type of complex error reporting, MARC Report employs cataloging checks.

The purpose of a cataloging check is to look at multiple elements of a MARC record and to report problems therein. MARC Report is distributed with thousands of these cataloging checks, which are designed to catch frequently occurring cataloging errors that validation by itself is unable to find.

Concepts and Overview

To create a MARC Review cataloging check, we first use MARC Review to specify the patterns needed to identify the problem or condition we want to be alerted to. Once the review has been defined and tested, we save that review, and then access it in the MARC Report options, where it can be added to the checks that are run each time we edit a record.

A basic understanding of the following will be needed in order to use 'MR' Cataloging checks to your advantage:

  • MARC Review
  • Brief messages and Notes (MARC Report)
  • Cataloging check options

1. MARC Review

If you are new to the program, or have not yet used MARC Review, then you will need to become acquainted with a few concepts.

In MARC Review, we first specify the data to search for, which we call a 'pattern', and then specify the output options for our results. The combined set of these specifications is referred to as a 'review'.

The best way to learn about patterns is to start MARC Review (under the Utilities menu), press Next, press Help, and read the page that appears. It may seem daunting the first time, but you do not need to understand everything on that page–just get an idea of the capabilities.

What we call a 'pattern' is very much like an OPAC search, except that MARC elements are used. Therefore, every pattern starts with the tag that you want to search, and you build up the pattern from there.

Once the patterns have been set-up, the next step is to configure the output options and test the review. However, for MR Cataloging checks, the output options are ignored (because MARC Report handles the output by creating the error messages), so for this step you should simply set up some text output that you can use to test the review.

Once the review is working to your satisfaction, run it (again) and select the option to 'Save the review'.

2. Brief Messages and Notes

You may already be familiar with the messages and notes used by MARC Report to report cataloging errors (if not, a brief summary follows). When editing or viewing a record in MARC Report, the top right window contains 'Brief Messages', which automatically display for each problem in a record. Brief Messages consist of a MARC Tag, followed by a colon, and then a 'brief' description of the problem found.

Brief messages are sorted in tag order.

Brief Messages are also color-coded to help you quickly group related problems. The color that is assigned to MR Cataloging Checks is green.

Clicking on a Brief message results in two changes to the display. First, the data element being reported as a problem is selected in the MARC editing window. Second, a more detailed, descriptive note corresponding to the brief message is displayed in the Notes window below.

Notes display more complete information about the problem listed in the Brief message. Depending on the type of problem, this 'Note' will either provide a list of correct cataloging values, or provide a more detailed explanation as to why a problem was reported and what can be done to correct it.

3. Cataloging check options

If you have customized your options before, you will be familiar with the concept of 'sets'. We use the term 'Set' to refer to a group of decisions that you have made about what Cataloging checks are enabled and what cataloging checks are disabled. These sets or groups are useful if you work on files from different sources (for example, if you receive new cataloging on vendor diskettes, or via ftp), and would like to use different checks for different record sources.

This concept of 'sets' is also applied to MR Cataloging checks.

You can access the MR Cataloging check editor from the cataloging check page of the options. This editor will consist of two forms: one, on the right, will list all of the saved reviews you have created in MARC Review; the other, on the left, will list any saved reviews that you want to be run as cataloging checks in MARC Report.

To add a saved review to a MR Cataloging check group you simply drag it from one screen and drop it on the other.

Step-by-step Tutorial

The example that follows includes snapshots of steps along the way and is intended to be as complete as possible:
Example: Create a Cataloging Check to prompt for the addition of a 246 when the 245 contains a parallel title

232/mrcatsinfo.txt · Last modified: 2021/12/29 16:21 (external edit)
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