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ALA20061 F aceted A pplication of S ubject T erminology A Joint Research and Development Project by OCLC and the Library of Congress A Faceted LCSH Based.

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Presentation on theme: "ALA20061 F aceted A pplication of S ubject T erminology A Joint Research and Development Project by OCLC and the Library of Congress A Faceted LCSH Based."— Presentation transcript:

1 ALA20061 F aceted A pplication of S ubject T erminology A Joint Research and Development Project by OCLC and the Library of Congress A Faceted LCSH Based Subject Vocabulary Ed ONeill, OCLC Lois Mai Chan, University of Kentucky ALA Annual Conference New Orleans, June 24, 2006

2 ALA20062 Need for New Approach Phenomenal growth of electronic resources Emergence of numerous metadata schemes Need for a new approach to subject access Lack of skilled subject catalogers

3 ALA20063 Subject Vocabulary for the Web Optimal access points Simple in structure and syntax Usable by non-catalogers and in non-library environments Semantic interoperability Compatible with MARC, Dublin Core, and other popular metadata schemas Easy maintainability Amenable to computer-assisted authority control

4 ALA20064 Options The ALCTS/SAC/Subcommittee on Metadata and Subject Analysis( ) identified three basic approaches to selecting an indexing/subject heading schema for Internet resources: Develop a new schema Use an existing schema(s) Adapt or modify an existing schema

5 ALA20065 Subject Representation in Metadata Issues considered: Vocabulary (Semantics): Terminology and term relationships Application (Syntax): How words are put together to form subject terms

6 ALA20066 LCSH Vocabulary Largest in English language Rich vocabulary covering all subject areas Synonym and homograph control Extensive hierarchical and associative references among terms De facto standard controlled vocabulary: extensively used by libraries, translated into many languages, and contained in millions of MARC records Long and well-documented history Strong institutional support of the Library of Congress

7 ALA20067 LCSH Application Rules The full-string approach to complex subjects is designed: To ensure precision in retrieval To facilitate browsing of multiple-concept or multi-faceted subjects in the online catalog

8 ALA20068 Application of LCSH on the Web LCSH is not compatible in syntax with most other controlled vocabularies; LCSH is not amenable to search engines outside of the OPAC environment Few LCSH headings are established Complex subject heading strings in bibliographic or metadata records are costly to maintain LCSH does not lend itself to automatic indexing or authority control The use of LCSH requires highly trained personnel

9 ALA20069 What is FAST? A rich controlled vocabulary based on the terminology of Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) A simplified application syntax

10 ALA Principles of FAST A faceted approach by categorizing headings according to their functions Retains the richness of the LCSH vocabulary in a simpler application syntax Provides a tiered approach to allow different levels of subject representation

11 ALA Characteristics of FAST Vocabulary: Enumerative vs. Faceting Terms in same facet – enumerated Terms in different facets – listed separately Retrieval: Precoordination and Postcoordination Terms in same facet – precoordinated Terms in different facets - postcoordinated

12 ALA Vocabulary: Enumeration and Faceting Headings in the FAST database include single-concept as well as multiple-concept headings. Each FAST heading or heading-string belongs to a single facet

13 ALA Subject Analysis - FAST Vocabulary construction – fully established headings maintained in FAST database Cataloging/indexing – selecting appropriate headings from FAST database Retrieval – supporting faceted searching

14 ALA Sources of FAST Headings Library of Congress Subject Headings Headings Assigned to Bibliographic Records in the WorldCat Created Headings

15 ALA Faceting Reduces the number of possible headings and heading strings Permits independent use of headings Headings are less volatile ~9,000,000 different LCSH topical headings in bibliographic records ~400,000 FAST topical headings Fewer infrequently assigned headings Supports faceted searches

16 ALA Eight Facets Topical Personal Names Form (Genre) Chronological Corporate Names Conference/Meetings Uniform Titles Geographic

17 ALA Main headings A FAST main heading contains a word or phrase representing a concept or entity that falls into one and only oneof the eight FAST facets. Banks and banking Bibliography California Catalogs Chemistry, Organic Emigration and immigration Self-esteem Spain

18 ALA Subdivisions A heading string may contain one or more subdivisions belonging to the same facet as the main heading AbortionLaw and legislationCriminal provisions AlcoholicsServices forPlanning AmericansTravelHistoriography AsiansLegal status, laws, etc. BibliographyUnion lists BrainCancerPatientsFamily relationships CaliforniaSan FranciscoChinatown MichiganLake Charlevoix OhioColumbus

19 ALA Modular Approach Each facet forms a distinct and discrete list of headings in a separate file. These lists may be used together or separately. In a particular application, not all facets are required. For example, in indexing a collection of naturally occurring objects, the chronological and personal name headings may not be applicable. One or more of the facets may be used with other standard lists, for instance, using topical headings from FAST and geographic headings from the Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names (TGN)

20 ALA All Headings Are Established FAST uses the MARC 21 authority format The MARC 21 bibliographic and authority formats were revised to accommodate FAST by authorizing the x48 (Chronological) fields Assigning FAST headings doesnt require an understanding of the rules for constructing headings Authorities can serve as indexes Automatic and/or machine assisted assignment possible

21 ALA Topical Headings Secret service Urbanization HospitalsAdministrationData processing CatalogingAnalytical entry PhotoconductivityMeasurement Woodwind trios (English horn, oboes (2)) SailingSafety measures

22 ALA Topical Authority Record

23 ALA Geographic Facet Geographic names will be established and applied in indirect order, [LouisianaNew Orleans not New Orleans Louisiana] First level geographic names will be limited to names from the Geographic Area Codes table (e.g., Ohio, Victoria, Great Lakes, etc.) Other names will be entered as subdivisions under the smallest first level name in which it is fully contained [EuropeCurzon Line] Bodies of water (Bays, Gulfs, etc.) that are part of oceans are established under the larger body of water [Atlantic Ocean Chesapeake Bay not Chesapeake Bay (Md. and Va.)] Geographic Area Codes are included in all authority records for geographic names

24 ALA Geographic Headings Queensland [u-at-qn] Mars [zma] MarylandWorcester County [n-us-md] SloveniaMaribor [e-xv] NorwayOslo Metropolitan Area [e-no] EnglandChilton (Oxfordshire) [e-uk-en] IndiaLimbdi (Princely State) [a-ii] New South WalesSydneyBondi [u-at-ne] Pacific OceanRowan Bay [p]

25 ALA Geographic Authority Record

26 ALA Form (Genre) Headings Case studies Abstracts Census Rules Dictionaries Folklore BibliographyCatalogs Periodicals Guidebooks

27 ALA Personal and Corporate Names Headings for persons: Woodward, Bob Dewey, Melvil, Kennedy family Charles II, King of France, Headings for corporate bodies: OCLC Ford Motor Company United States. National Security Agency Dixie Chicks (Musical group)

28 ALA Chronological (Period) FAST chronological headings consist of only a single date or a date range Limited to a single chronological heading per bibliographic record Authority records will only be established when needed for references or linkages Headings consist of either a single date or a starting and ending date but will be formatted for display: – 1945 Since B.C A.D.

29 ALA LCSH to FAST Conversion 600 Lincoln, Abraham, $d Political leadership 650 Genius 650 Friendship 650 Presidents 650 Political science 651 United States 655 Case studies 655 Biography FAST 600 Lincoln, Abraham, $d Political leadership $z United States $v Case studies 650 Genius $v Case studies 600 Lincoln, Abraham, $d $x Friends and associates 650 Presidents $z United States $v Biography 651 United States $x Politics and government $y LCSH

30 ALA Databases The FAST database is available as an OCLC SiteSearch database at The database may be unavailable for extended periods This version of FAST is being applied and evaluated in a few applications The Subject Analysis Committee has established a Subcommittee on FAST to provide guidance and evaluation

31 ALA Current FAST Database Personal name headings 510,095 Corporate name headings283,581 Topical headings412,709 Geographic name headings148,960 Form headings 694 Total FAST authorities 1,356,039

32 ALA Future Development Plans Update and resynchronize all FAST headings with LCSH Develop the conference/meetings facet Develop the uniform titles facet Expand the geographic names based on usage data and add information from the Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) Revise and expand the form (genre) facet Complete the FAST manual

33 ALA Advantages of FAST Reduces elaborate heading construction rules for catalogers and indexers; heading construction is at vocabulary rather than application level Is able to accommodate both precoordinate and postcoordinate indexing and retrieval Is more amenable to computer-assisted indexing and authority control Is easier and more economical to maintain than a highly enumerative vocabulary Facilitates mapping of subject data and cross-domain searching Accommodates different retrieval models

34 ALA Summary LCSH Vocabulary Faceted Hierarchical Fully established Compatible with LCSH

35 ALA Questions?

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