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Editing a Continuing Resource Frequency Change

  1. Verify the change in frequency:
  2. Resources for editing frequency changes can be found in the
    • OCLC Formats and Standards
    • CONSER cataloging manual which can be found in Cataloger’s Desktop
      Cataloging Tools Logins
    • The link above takes you to Cataloging Tools Logins. See Cataloger’s Desktop and login instructions.
    • In Cataloger’s Desktop, under the Table of Contents heading, go to
      CONSER cataloging manual, Part 2, Module 21.2.3, 13.3 for Frequency notes (Fields 310 and 321).
  3. Locate title in Sirsi. From the Cataloging toolbar, under Titles, choose Modify Title.
    1. Search by Title - Index: Title Type: Browse
    2. Search by ISSN - Index: General Type: Keyword
  4. Find the appropriate fixed field values in the OCLC Formats and Standards and change them in the bib record, as necessary.
    1. First determine the one-letter code for the fixed field Frequency (“Frequn”) in the top portion of the bib record.
    2. You can find the list of codes on the OCLC Frequency page at:
    3. A few of the more commonly used frequency codes are b (bimonthly) which is also used for six, seven, or eight numbers a year, m (monthly) which is used for nine, ten, eleven or twelve numbers a year, and q (quarterly).
    4. Next determine the code for Regularity (“Regulr”) which is also in the top portion of the bib record.
    5. You can find the list of codes on the OCLC Regularity page at:
    6. The most commonly used regularity codes are r (regular) and x (completely irregular).
    7. The Regulr code and the Frequn code should agree. For example, if a periodical is q (quarterly), then it is r (regular). However, there are times, for example, when a periodical is published 6 times a year, but it is not published on a regular bimonthly schedule. In this case, According to CONSER the frequency will = b and the regularity will = x.
    8. The third and last element in the fixed field that you may need to edit is the Ser_ Type. For example: When the frequency of a continuing resource changes from being published annually or less often, to suddenly being published more than once a year, you will need to add a code for Ser_ Type.
    9. You can find a list of Ser_ Type codes on the OCLC page for Type of Continuing Resource at:
    10. The most commonly used Ser_ Type codes are p (periodical), d (database), and, w (website), however, it is not unusual to see a record using one of the other Ser_Type codes.
  5. Edit variable fields 310 and 321 in the body of the bibliographic record.
    1. Re-tag the existing frequency note from 310 to 321.
    2. Move the re-tagged note to position it as the last 321 note. The original (earliest) frequency is listed as the first 321. The former frequencies are listed in the order of earliest to most recent.
    3. Create a 310 field to enter the current frequency.
    4. Add subfield b, (use shift and pipe for the subfield symbol) to show the dates, during which the frequency was in effect, in fields 310 and 321. Use a comma between subfield a and subfield b. Dates are not required if unknown. (In Sirsi, there are no spaces before or after the subfield b).
    5. Guidelines and examples for the 310 Current Publication Frequency field and be found at:
    6. Guidelines and examples for the *321 Former Publication Frequency field can be found at:
    7. The 310 field is (NR or not repeatable, while 321 fields are (R or repeatable).
    8. For frequency changes, the record will have a 310 field and one or more 321 fields.

      Example 1:
      310 4 issues yearly,|bAug. 1904- 
      321 Five issues yearly,|b1901-June 1904 
      Example 2:
      310 Monthly,|b1949-
      321 Five issues yearly,|b1947
      321 14 issues yearly,|b1948
  • Note: Be Sure To SAVE All Changes.
  • Note: Edit the frequency change for all formats (for which it is valid) in Sirsi, i.e. print, electronic, cd-rom. You do not need to update records for formats that ceased publication prior to the frequency change.
  • Note: Remember to also edit and update the serial control patterns and predictions. See Creating Predictions.
  • Note: As of September 2015, it is now local policy to also update frequency changes in WorldCat.