In December of 1996 members of the Subcommittee on Form Headings/Subdivisions Implementation distributed two questionnaires regarding form/genre terminology. The one with which this report deals was sent to a small sampling of thesaurus developers asking about their recording of or plans to record form/genre terms. The other was distributed on the US-MARC list to collect information on the status of system changes in regards to the 655 field and 6XX $v USMARC field designations. Preliminary results of both questionnaires were discussed at the Subcommittee's open meeting on February 14, 1996.
SUMMARY OF RESULTS OF THESAURUS QUESTIONNAIRE: Original responses from 10 thesaurus developers (and one response from a database representative) were received, indicating a range of approaches to collecting and treating form/genre terminology and in prescribing or observing the application of that terminology in either USMARC or non-MARC records. After the 2/14/96 meeting, one updated and one additional response were received. [Remarks from these respondents are characterized and tallied in the following results.] Several respondents indicated a need to clarify and standardize the purpose and nature of access by form/genre.
These preliminary results provide insight into the benefits of:
1) coordination among thesuaurus developers in collecting, naming, defining, and categorizing of form/genre terminology
2) standardization of how form/genre terminology is applied in USMARC and non-MARC databases
3) incorporation of system changes to support sophisticated search strategies and retrieval displays for form/genre terminology
4) education of users regarding the distinction between form/genre and topical access and the manner in which such searches can be effectively executed.
Below is a list of questions IN CAPS sent to thesaurus developers. Responses (indented and in lowercase) are described in more detail than in the summary above. Discrepancies in numbers are due to the fact that not all respondents answered all questions and some questions had more than one possible answer.
1. WHO ARE YOU? Art & Architecture Thesaurus (AAT) CAB Thesaurus (Slough [England]: Commonwealth Agricultural Bureaux) Catholic Subject Headings Defense Technical Information Center Thesuaurus ERIC Thesaurus General Accounting Offices (GAO) Thesaurus Guidelines on Subject Access to Individual Works of Fiction, Drama, Etc. (GSAFD) NASA Thesaurus RBMS Thesauri (Binding terms, Genre terms, Paper terms, Printing & Publishing evidence, Provenance evidence, Type evidence LC Thesaurus for Graphic Materials, 2nd ed. (TGM II) Transportation Library Subject Thesaurus __________ English Short Title Catalogue (a database; not a thesaurus) 2. IS THERE A FORM/GENRE FACET OR LIST (OR ITS EQUIVALENT) IN YOUR THESAURUS? IF YES, WHAT IS IT CALLED? IF NO, DO YOU HAVE PLANS TO CREATE SUCH A FACET OR LIST? Yes: 7 Various names applied: publication/document type Form subheading Information Forms facet Visual Works facet all thesauri included in RBMS complete TGM II No separate list: 5 Will create list: 1 3. ARE TERMS FROM YOUR FORM/GENRE LIST USED IN USMARC CATALOGING RECORDS? IF YES, IN WHAT FIELD ARE THEY CODED (650, 655, OTHER)? some used in more than one field, including: 008, 650, 655, 755 650: 3 655: 5 MARC not used: 4 4. IF FORM/GENRE TERMS ARE USED IN CATALOGING RECORDS OTHER THAN USMARC, BRIEFLY DESCRIBE THEIR USE. Fields used: publication type field and/or codes for pubtypes object type, classification, subcategory type of work controlled terms that match type of record identifier field acquisitions series Types of records used: archival, museum, visual resource communities, pictorial material, patents, book dealers 5. BY WHAT MEANS CAN A USER SEARCH FOR THESE TERMS? (ACCESS PRINT VERSION OF THESAURUS/LIST; ACCESS THESAURUS/LIST ONLINE; ACCESS TERMS THROUGH ONLINE KEYWORD SEARCH, SUBJECT KEYWORD, OR FORM/GENRE KEYWORD SEARCH) print list: 9 online list: 5 keyword search: 6 subject/descriptor keyword search: 8 form/genre (term and/or code, or id) keyword search: 4 6. ARE MACHINE-READABLE AUTHORITY CONTROL RECORDS AVAILABLE FROM YOU OR ANOTHER SOURCE FOR YOUR FORM/GENRE TERMS? IF AVAILABLE NOW, ARE THEY IN THE USMARC FORMAT AND CAN THEY BE DISTRIBUTED TO THE BIBLIOGRAPHIC COMMUNITY? IF NOT AVAILABLE AT THE PRESENT TIME, PLEASE LET US KNOW IF THERE ARE ANY FUTURE PLANS FOR SUCH DISTRIBUTION. MARC authority records available Yes: 2 No: 5 can authority records be distributed Yes: 1 plans for future distribution Yes: 1 No: 5 7. WHAT DO YOU ENVISION AS AN IDEAL ENVIRONMENT FOR THE DISPLAY AND SEARCHING OF FORM/GENRE TERMS IN YOUR THESAURUS? satisfied with current situation development/useage not under consideration use only as qualifying terms allow users to access thesaurus from behind catalog database, browse thesaurus and then cut and paste selected descriptors into appropriate field greater use of syndetic structure of thesaurus to enhance retrieval add definitions and scope notes make thesaurus widely available, such as through WWW integration of multiple thesauri 8. CAN YOU SUGGEST ANY SPECIFIC AREAS OF RESEARCH AND POSSIBLE FUNDING THAT WOULD IMPROVE THE AVAILABILITY AND USEFULNESS OF FORM/GENRE VOCABULARY IN DATABASES? standardization of terminology provide over-all scheme for terminology universalization of form/genre distinction in LCSH user education to help predict what will be retrieved via a subject search as distinguished from what will be retrieved via a form/genre search see also, answers for question 7 9. CAN SOME OR ALL OF YOUR RESPONSE BE POSTED ON WEB PAGES MAINTAINED BY A MEMBER OF THE SUBCOMMITTEE? THESE WEB PAGES WILL BE PUBLICIZED WITHIN THE BIBLIOGRAPHIC COMMUNITY IN ORDER TO IMPROVE COMMUNICATION AND EDUCATION ON FORM/GENRE ISSUES AND PROGRESS. (SEE CURRENT WEB PAGES: http://www.pitt.edu/~agtaylor/ala/alac.htm) AAT Catholic Subject Headings Defense Technology Thesaurus ERIC GAO Thesaurus Guidelines on Subject Access to Individual Works of Fiction, Drama, Etc. NASA Thesaurus RBMS Thesauri TGM II Transportation Thesaurus FROM: Harriette Hemmasi Mary Charles Lasater Rutgers University Authorities Coordinator New Brunswick, NJ Vanderbilt University