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Cataloging Decisions

NCSU theses and dissertations are cataloged following a set of local procedures. The following outline gives an overview of the process:

  • Create an original record in OCLC Connextion, including name authority work and creating a call number
  • Update and export records from OCLC to Symphony
  • Import record(s) into Symphony using SmartPort or batch loading

Keep in mind there are different ways to do a record depending if it is a print thesis or dissertation, an ETD (Electronic Thesis/Dissertation), a microfiche, or a Design final project.

Procedures for Original Record Creation

Entering Bibliographic and Access Information into OCLC Connextion

The creation of original cataloging records for all materials at the NCSU Libraries is done with OCLC Connexion, our bibliographic utility software. All theses, dissertations, and Design special projects should be entered and uploaded onto WorldCat via Connexion and then loaded back into Unicorn, with the OCLC number as the title control number.

Here is the basic anatomy of a MARC record for a thesis:

  1. For the Leader

    Type of Record (Type): t (Manuscript language material): Currently ETDs are cataloged as unpublished manuscripts, and will continue to be cataloged as unpublished manuscripts until a policy decision is made to catalog ETDs otherwise.
    Bibliographic Level (BLvl): m (Monograph/Item)
    Descriptive Cataloging Form (Desc): i
    Encoding Level (ELvl): K (Less-than-full input by OCLC participants) -- This level is because NCSU Libraries do not assign subject headings for theses and dissertations. The updated NCSU Digital Repository allows a full-text search of the document.
    Form of Item (Form): # (blank) -- if an ETD, o (Online)
    Nature of Contents (Cont): b (Bibliographies), m (Theses) -- Keep in note to remove b if there are no bibliographies present
    Illustrations (Ills): a (Illustrations), b (Maps) -- Only if these are present in the document; content should reflect 300 field (for more extended options, visit the MARC 21 guidelines)
    Cataloging Source (Srce): d (Other)
    Target Audience (Audn): # (blank)
    Type of Control (Ctrl): # (blank)
    Language Code (Lang): eng (English) -- Content should reflect 041 field (for more language options, visit MARC language codes)
    Conference Publication (Conf): 0 (Not a conference publication)
    Biography (Biog): # (No biographical material)
    Modified Record (MRec): # (blank)
    Country of Publication, etc. (Ctry): ncu (North Carolina)
    Government Publication (GPub): # (Not a government publication)
    Literary Form (LitF): 0 (Not fiction (Not further specified)) -- While not as common, works of fiction (1), novels (f), plays (d), short story collections (j), mixed forms (m), and poetry collections (p) may be submitted
    Index (Indx): 0 (No index)
    Festschrift (Fest): 0 (Not a festschrift)
    Type of Date/Publication Status (DtSt): s (Single date)
    Dates: Enter date of publication in first entry; leave second entry empty -- Content should reflect 264 c
  2. 007: If the record is an ETD, enter information for the physical characteristics of the electronic record:007 ## c b r d m e n

    Subfield a (Type) is c (a computer file)

    Subfield b (Specific material designation) is r (remote)

    Subfield d (Color) will change depending on the color content of the material: a (one color) or m (multi-colored).

    Subfield e (Dimensions) is n (not applicable)
  3. 040: add subfield e rda to this field.
  4. 100/Authority work: A thesis or dissertation is the written result of original research. It is policy to use the form of a personal name based on the form found in the majority of the author's work. Because only a small percentage of thesis/dissertation authors have been previously (or will be subsequently) published, the name form is most often the same as that on the title page. Begin name authority work by searching in WorkFlows. If this author has been previously published, or has another NCSU thesis or dissertation, use the form found on the bibliographic and/or authority record in Unicorn. If no form is found, search OCLC Connexion or the Library of Congress Name Authority File. If this author has been previously published, or has another NCSU thesis or dissertation, use the form found on the bibliographic and/or authority record.

    If no name authority is found, set up the name using the following guidelines:
    Transcribe the author's name as it appears on the title page of the thesis or dissertation. Include any subfields, such as fuller form of a name (‡q), qualifiers (‡c), or birth year (‡d) that are found in the abstract or biographical information. If working with RDA rules, include a relator term to identify the work's author (‡e author).

    Information in the thesis or dissertation:
    Title page: by John E. Rose
    Abstract: John Edward Rose
    Biography: ...born 1959

    MARC record:
    100 1# Rose, John E. ‡q (John Edward), ‡d 1959- ‡e author

    Information in thesis or dissertation:
    Title page: by John R. Arnold, Jr. (or III, IV, etc)
    Abstract: Arnold, John Ray.
    Biography: ....born 1957

    MARC record:
    100 1# Arnold, John R. q (John Ray), d 1957- ‡e author

    If the birthdate is not given but a numeration is, set up the name as it appears on the title page with the numbering in a ‡c subfield.

    MARC record:
    100 1# Arnold, John R. q (John Ray), c Jr. ‡e author
  5. 245: Enter the title and author of the ETD as it appears on the title page, with ‡b for subtitle if necessary. Make sure that the second indicator corresponds with the number of non-filling characters.
  6. 264: Raleigh, North Carolina for place of publication and North Carolina State University for publishing institution is placed in brackets. Enter the date which appears on the title page. Date should match date in Leader.

    264 #1 [Raleigh, North Carolina] : b [North Carolina State University], c 2011.

    If a copyright exists on the document include that (© 2011)

    264 #4 c© 2011.

  7. 300: Enter here the pagination and other physical details of the ETD. Subfield ‡b should reflect what is present in Ills in the Leader.  for online theses/dissertations, subfield a should begin with 1 online resource

    300 ## 1 online resource (xvi, 141 pages) : b illustrations (some color), maps (some color)
    300 ##  1 online resource (xxii, 89 pages) : b color illustrations

    Print theses/dissertation
    300 ## iii, 203 pages : b illustrations, maps;  ‡c 28 cm

  8. 336, 337, 338: According to RDA procedures, a print thesis/dissertation has the content of text, media of unmediated, and carrier of volume.

    336 ## text b txt 2 rdacontent
    337 ## unmediated b n 2 rdamedia
    338 ## volume b nc 2 rdacarrier

    For an ETD, the content is described as text, media of computer, and carrier of online resource.

    336 ## text b txt 2 rdacontent
    337 ## computer b c 2 rdamedia
    338 ## online resource b cr 2 rdacarrier

  9. 502: Consult the title page to determine the date of the thesis or dissertation and if it is an M.S., M.A., Ph.D., or Ed.D. Examples:

    502 ## b M.S. c North Carolina State University, d 2009.
    502 ## b Ph.D. c North Carolina State University, d 2011.

  10. 504: If the thesis/dissertation concludes with a comprehensive list of bibliographic references, supply page numbers in parenthesis. Example:

    504 ## Includes bibliographic references (pages 136-141).

    If the thesis/dissertation does not contain a comprehensive list but rather has lists of references throughout the book, do not supply page numbers. Example:

    504 ## Includes bibliographic references.

    Indexes are rarely included with theses/dissertations, but the presence of one would be note here.

  11. 500: If vita is included, add it as a note.

    500 ## Includes vita.

  12. 690: Use this chart to determine what is the proper name usage for the department found on the title page; this will be placed in subfield x. Subfields a and v are constants, whether it is a thesis or dissertation. Examples:

    690 ## North Carolina State University v Theses x Textiles.
    690 ## North Carolina State University v Theses x Materials Science and Engineering.

  13. 856: Used only for when an ETD exists. Put the ETD's URL in subfield ‡u. Examples:

    856 40 y Full text (pdf) u

Here is what a completed thesis record will look like in OCLC Connexion:

Here is what a completed dissertation record will look like in OCLC Connexion:

Design Theses (Final Projects)

At the close of each semester, the Design Library receives print copies of masters theses in the subject areas of Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Industrial Design, Graphic Design, and Art + Design.  Acquistions & Discovery creates original records for these theses.

Create Original Record in Connexion

Apply constant data entitled “masters projects” (all lower case).

Fill out the rest of the record.  Pay close attention to these fields:

  • 099 field: All of the theses will have the local call number (099): LD3921. Complete the call number by adding the designation for the major () and the author cutter - do not add the year.  Be sure to shelflist the call number in Sirsi to ensure they are in alphabetical order by last name.
Pattern of Design Theses Call numbersexample
LD3921 .ARCH. .[Cutter]LD3921 .Arch. .B899
LD3921 .ART + DESIGN .[Cutter]LD3921 .Art + Design .L44
LD3921 .GRAPH. DES. .[Cutter]LD3921 .Graph. Des. .V34
LD3921 .IND. DESIGN. .[Cutter]LD3921 .Ind. Design. .P38
LD3921 .LAND. ARCH. .[Cutter]LD3921 .Land. Arch. .F58
  • 100 field: Author names do not need to be authorized.  Do not bother doing authority work on these.
  • 300 field: Enter here the pagination and other physical details of the design theses. Most design theses will be leaves (printed on 1 side) not pages (printed on 2 sides).
    • Many theses contain plans and/or maps, be sure to include the appropriate codes for these in Ills in the Leader.
    • There is usually an accompanying CD-ROM or DVD-ROM.  Remember to make a note of that in the |e of the 300 field and add the corresponding 33X fields.
      • Examples:
        • 300 ## 83 leaves : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 28 cm + DVD-ROM (4 3/4 in.)
        • 300 ## 76 leaves :  illustrations (some color), color maps ; 23 x 37 cm.
        • 300 ## 113 leaves : color illustrations, color maps ; 28 cm + 1 CD-ROM (4 3/4 in.)
        • 300 ## 22 pages : illustrations ; 28 cm + 1 CD-ROM (4 3/4 in.)
  • 502 and 690 field: Enter the corresponding major in the 502 and 690 fields.

Reformat, validate, and upload to OCLC.

Note: local fields 099 and 690 will be stripped from the master record in OCLC.  They will export to Sirsi though.

Export to Sirsi.

Adding Item Records in Sirsi or Batchload your records for easier creation of items. 

There will at least 3 copies of each thesis. Copies go to Hill, Design and Special Collections:

General Instructions

1. Item type = THESIS or DISSERTN

2. Checkout all copies to INPROCESS

3. A&D staff enter 'completion date' in the Design Special Projects database. (In progress 5/20/13 -- cpa)

4. Completed final projects will be passed to Serials for binding. 

5. Serials will determine if additional CD/DVDs are needed. 

6. Serials staff will send CD/DVD to Preservation for additional copies.

Design Copy

1. Library = DESIGN

2. Home location = STACKS

3. If there is an accompanying CD-ROM or DVD-ROM, create a separate call number/item record: 

NOTE:  ONLY DESIGN CD/DVDs should be barcoded.  Place piggyback barcode on the white Tyvek envelopes (or drop inside with disc).  Discard plastic cases.  

---see Specialist for more envelopes

  • Library = DESIGN
  • Item type = Appropriate 'AC' Item type (e.g. ACCD-ROM, ACDVD-ROM, AC-CD, AC-OTHER)
  • Home location = STACKS

4. Change number of pieces to 2

5. Use a piggyback barcode for thesis and accompanying materials

Special Collections (SCRC) Copy

NOTE:   SPECOLL CD/DVDs will NO longer require a separate call number/item record. NO barcode will be needed on the piece. Place disc copy in a Tyvek envelope.

1. Library = BOOKBOT

2. Home location = SPEC-OD

3.  Number of pieces is set to 1

4. Use a piggyback barcode for thesis ONLY 

Hill Copy

1. If there is an accompanying CD-ROM or DVD-ROM:

  • No call number/item created
  • Number of pieces is set to 1

2. Use a piggyback barcode for thesis only (accompanying CD/DVD is not barcoded, but place disc in a Tybek envelope)

Note: The SCRC copy is the archival copy. Accompanying material call number/item record and barcode are stored in Sirsi for inventory purposes but accompanying material are not checked in/out of bookBot. Only the print thesis is checked in/out of bookBot.

Additional/Extra Copies
  • If more than 3 copies are submitted for cataloging and processing, return extra copies to Karen Dewitt (Design Library). She will return them to the owner and/or recycle. (-rg 5/15/13)

(Design Final Project policy & procedure updated 2018-09-20 lkw ; previous change: 2013-05-20 by cpascale, change in how SCRC copies are marked per L. Sellars.)

Holdings for NCSU Theses and Dissertations


  • Valid locations for SCRC copies are:
    • BOOKBOT/SPEC-OD (print copies, all print copies are in bookBot)
    • SPECCOLL/MICROFORMS (non-circulating SCRC preservation microfiche copies. These are in the SCRC Vault.)
  • ETDs/online copies should say ONLINE/NET
  • The following are circulating/general collection copies:
    • SATELLITE/MICROFORMS (circulating microfiche copies)
  • Itemtype should be THESIS or DISSERTN in all of the above.
  • Class scheme should be MFTHESIS for the microfiche copies.

Print holdings

Print theses and dissertations holdings are generated in the same manner. Every print thesis or dissertation should have at least two copies: one for Special Collections coded BOOKBOT/SPEC-OD and one for D.H. Hill (DHHILL/STACKS). All Design Special Projects will have a third copy for the Design Library (DESIGN/STACKS). Check the document Departmental designations in call numbers and subject headings to determine how many copies and to which branch location any third copy should belong. In addition, there should also be microfiche copies for print dissertations and for all ETDs.

Holdings are created through WorkFlows' "Add Volumes and Call Numbers" wizard, or as a default call number record when batch loaded. Default call number/item information should be supplied as follows:

                    Class scheme: LC (except ETDs and Microfiche)
                    Library: DHHILL, SPECCOLL, DESIGN, LRL, NRL, TEXTILES, VETMED, BOOKBOT, SATELLITE (microfiche only)
                    Type: DISSERTN, THESIS
                    Home Location: STACKS, MICROFORMS, SPEC-OD (SCRC copies only)
                    Permanent: Y
                    Circulate: Y

Procedures for adding Microfiche reproduction of NCSU Theses and Dissertations

(as of May, 2018, NCSU will no longer be receiving microfiche copy of ETD's; Special Collections will consider the IR digital copy as the preservation copy – 10/2/2018 lkw)

After an ETD is cataloged, the preservation copy of microfiche will be cataloged as an "add-on" to the record describing the original ETD. Up until the advent of ETDs, only Ph.D. dissertations were microfilmed. These were provided to us by University Microfilms (UMI) as part of their dissertation service. With ETDs, an archival print copy was also desired, and so a decision was made to have Master's theses microfilmed as well. All microfiche copies are now considered as archival copies and are stored off-site and shelved alphabetically. These should receive automatic (XX) call numbers with Class Scheme of MFTHESIS, Library SPECOLL, and home location MICROFORMS. This class scheme enables the display of a generic note in place of the call number in our public catalog ("Microform NCSU Thesis/Dissertation"). Please DO NOT add |z with a count of microfiches (e.g. "1-3 microfiches").

Processing preservation copy of microfiche

  1. Preservation Department orders a preservation copy of ETD on microfiche from ProQuest.
  2. Microfiche are sent from ProQuest to A&D.
  3. Because the collection is arranged by year of graduation, then alphabetically by author's last name, write the year on the fiche folder.
  4. A&D Monograph staff or Student the item record to the existing bibliographic record describing the original ETD by doing the following:
  •           Add Volume and Call Numbers
  •           Library for new call number: SPECCOLL
  •           Change class scheme to MFTHESIS
  •           Change type to DISSERTN or THESIS (this will follow the type of the ONLINE copy)
  •           Change home location to MICROFORMS
  •           Toggle CIRCULATE flag off
  •           Toggle SHADOW ITEM flag on
  •           Set "number of pieces" to actual fiche sheet count.
  •           Write the year on the fiche folder (from the date field on the bib record)

MARC Holdings  ETD record

  1. Create a MARC holdings for library: change to SPECCOLL
  2. Use the following Fixed Field values:
  • Rec_Type: x for single sheet; v for multiple sheets
  • Enc_lvl: 1 (minimal level)
  • Material: he (microfiche)
  • Acq_Meth: z (other method of acquisition, e.g. not deposit, exchange, purchase, etc.)
  • Gen_Retn: 8 (Permanently retained)
  • Copies: 001
  • Lending: b (will not lend, not a service copy)
  • Repr: s (original is electronic)
  • Holdings Entries: change 852 first indicator to "8" (other class scheme), then add |cARCHIVES|hArranged by year, then by author's surname
  • Create 843 field to record copy specific information: Preservation microfiche.|bAnn Arbor, MI :|cUMI,|d2003.|e2 microfiches ; 11 x 15 cm.

Completed screen looks like this:

Microfiche Reproduction Example (right click on image to view at higher resolution using "View Image", or double click on image to execute Endeca search)

Both ETD and MFTHESIS are used with an AUTO (XX) call number to suppress the display of the call number in the OPAC (not in the staff client) and to instead display a standardized text. Here is an OPAC display for an NCSU dissertation with a preservation microfiche, where the XX call number has been replaced for display purposes

Assigning Call Numbers

Parts of a call number:

                    LD3921 Classification number
                    Tex       Department abbreviation
                    B73       Cutter Number

All theses and dissertations are assigned the same classification number "LD3921."

The departmental abbreviation should be taken from the title page. Please be sure to use the standard forms of departmental abbreviations from the document Departmental designations in call numbers and subject headings.

The entire departmental abbreviation goes into the Unicorn call number. Note that migrated thesis call numbers contain an additional decimal point in front of the departmental abbreviation. An abbreviation taken from the table should take the form:

                    LD3921 .Tex. Eng., Chem. & Sci. .C455

Cutter numbers are used to arrange bibliographical material by main entry (author's last name for theses and dissertations). Cutters are composed of the initial letter of the main entry heading, followed by Arabic numerals representing the succeeding letters. To determine the appropriate Arabic numerals use the Cutter table taken from the Library of Congress Subject Cataloging Manual's section on shelflisting.

ETDs do not have call number assigned to them; it is fine to leave the automated call number as it is.

Hunt Theses & Dissertations Project

Hunt Theses & Dissertations Project