General Information


Cataloging and Metadata Services has 29 members, including 11 librarians and 18 classified staff.


Cataloging and Metadata Services was formed in July, 2012, from sections of the former Monographic Services and Serials Services divisions.

The department is comprised of five units:

  • International Studies Cataloging
  • Metadata and Cataloging Initiatives
  • Monographic Cataloging
  • Serials Cataloging
  • Special Materials Cataloging

The Monographic, Special Materials, and International Studies Cataloging units perform complex copy and original cataloging of monographs and integrating resources.  The Monographic Cataloging Unit covers most of the humanities, social sciences, and sciences in Western languages.  The International Studies Cataloging Unit handles materials in Near Eastern, Slavic, South Asian, and Southeast Asian languages.  The Special Materials Cataloging Unit handles non-book materials, rare materials, and many books in a variety of languages and subjects.  Staff from the three units also provide subject cataloging for digital projects. The Monographic Cataloging, International Studies Cataloging, and Special Materials Cataloging units are self-managing.

The Serials Cataloging Unit performs complex copy and original cataloging of serials in print and electronic formats in all languages and subjects.

The Metadata and Cataloging Initiatives Unit is responsible for metadata work in support of digital repositories and linked data, and retrospective, remedial, and enrichment cataloging.


The department catalogs according to Resource Description & Access (RDA) and LC-PCC Policy Statements.  Other descriptive standards used for special materials include Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (DCRM) and Describing Archives: A Content Standard (DACS).  Library of Congress Classification (LCC) and Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) are used for everything except medical materials in the Health Sciences Library, which receive National Library of Medicine Classification and Medical Subject Headings (MeSH).  Other controlled vocabularies used are Library of Congress Genre/Form Terms (LCGFT), Library of Congress Demographic Group Terms (LCDGT), and the Library of Congress Medium of Performance Thesaurus for Music (LCMPT).  The Libraries uses the OCLC bibliographic utility, a consortial implementation of the Alma Library Management System, and the Primo discovery system.  Cataloging and Metadata Services has OCLC Enhance authority for the Books, Computer Files, Scores, and Visual Materials formats, and CONSER authentication for Serials.  Significant changes to copy cataloging records are made in WorldCat (network level cataloging).  The department participates in all four programs of the Program for Cooperative Cataloging by contributing serial records (CONSER) at the level of the CONSER standard record, bibliographic records (BIBCO) at the level of the BIBCO Standard Record, name authority records (NACO), and subject, genre/form, and demographic group term authority records and new and revised LC classification (SACO).  The UW Libraries is consistently one of the largest annual contributors of new controlled vocabulary through the SACO program.  Cataloging for digital collections in CONTENTdm is done using Dublin Core.