Authority Records - Validating Headings in Bibliographic Records

Modified on Fri, 04 Mar 2022 at 02:03 PM

Headings on bibliographic records should be validated against the WYLD authority file when:

  1. New records are brought into the system
  2. New records are created either through original cataloging or through the process of duplicating an existing WYLD record
  3. New access points are added to an existing bibliographic record
  4. Unauthorized headings are found through routine editing of bibliographic records

Use the Modify Title wizard in the group of Title Maintenance wizards to validate unauthorized headings. As shown below, invalid headings display with the word ‘UNAUTHORIZED’.

To check this heading against the WYLD authority file, click on the Shield Helper with the small green check mark shown above.

Clicking on the Shield Helper retrieves the display shown here. The unauthorized heading from the bibliographic record is displayed in the upper portion of the window. The list of authority headings in the WYLD authority file displays in the middle portion of the window. Note the green check marks next to the names in the authority file. These green check marks indicate valid headings for which there are WYLD authority records. In the bottom section of the window is the WYLD authority record that matches the heading displayed in the top portion of the window. In the example shown here, there is an authority record for this personal name.  The heading is unauthorized because it is missing the birth year and the qualifier that provides this author’s full name. 

In addition to the types of errors shown here, headings can be unauthorized in WYLD if the heading is misspelled, has incorrect birth and death dates, is missing the delimiter ‘d’ in which the years are indicated, or is not entered with the correct tag line (for example, a personal name that is entered as a 650 topical subject in the bibliographic record instead of a 600 personal name subject heading.)

Because this heading is in the WYLD authority file, it can be easily corrected. Click on the ‘Get From List’ button. This action, shown in the window displayed below, replaces the unauthorized heading with the valid heading from the WYLD authority file. Note that the entry in the upper portion of the window now displays the valid form of the name with its qualifier and date.

To continue moving through the bibliographic record looking for other invalid headings, click on the ‘Next’ button. If there are other invalid headings in the bibliographic record, the next one will display and you will repeat the process of determining if that unauthorized heading is in the WYLD authority file. If there is another unauthorized heading and an authority record, click on the ‘Get From List’ button to replace the invalid heading with the authorized one.  Continue clicking the ‘Next’ button until all headings in the bibliographic record have been checked against the WYLD authority file.

If there are other unauthorized headings in the bibliographic record but there is no WYLD authority record for it, click the ‘Skip’ button to ignore the invalid heading you can’t correct.

If you know there was only one invalid heading in the bibliographic record, click the ‘Skip Rest’ button. This will end the validation process and return you to the bibliographic record.

When all headings on the record have been matched against the authority file, or when the remaining headings have been skipped by clicking on the ‘Skip Rest’ button, the following display will appear. The Validation Complete window that appears indicates how many entries were checked in the bibliographic record, how may unauthorized headings were found, authorized, or skipped. To return to the bibliographic record, click the ‘OK’ button in the Validation Complete window shown below.

As shown here, the bibliographic record will display with the corrected heading(s). Click the ‘Save’ button to save the corrected bibliographic record.

If unauthorized headings remain on a bibliographic record after the validation process, it could be that there is no authority record in the WYLD authority file.  New authority records are imported or created manually by the WYLD Office.

It is also possible to propose a new authority record. If you’ve already validated headings on a record and there is a heading you want to propose adding to the authority file, use the ‘Propose’ button shown in the example above. If you’ve clicked the OK button in the Validation Complete window, you will have to click on the Shield Helper again to return to the authority validation process. With the invalid heading displayed in the Heading line, click the ‘Propose’ button to create a brief authority record for the heading shown. Search the authority file carefully before proposing a new heading. Do not propose an authority record for a heading that already has an authority record in WYLD.

More examples of invalid headings

In the following example, note that the highlighted authorized heading shown in the middle portion of the screen is for the word ‘Cranberries’ with no subdivision. There is no authority record for this heading that includes the subfield ‘v’ with Juvenile literature. When this heading ‘Cranberries’ is validated by clicking the ‘Next’ button, the heading that will be inserted into the bibliographic record will be just the word ‘Cranberries’ without the subdivision. If you want the subdivision of Juvenile literature, it will have to be added manually. In this case, since the unauthorized heading shown in the upper portion of the window is invalid because the heading is incorrectly spelled, it would be best to click the ‘Skip’ or ‘Skip Rest’ button and manually correct the spelling in this heading in the bibliographic record to preserve the subdivision so it doesn’t have to be re-added manually.

In the example below, the invalid heading is a result of several things.

Invalid tag number for geographic location:

  1. 650 is topical heading
  2. 651 is geographic heading

Indicators are in the first position and not in the second position where they should be located

The wrong form of entry is used for the city and state

The authorized form for the city and state entry is displayed below in the authority entry.

Notice the green check mark next to the entry for the valid heading: Cheyenne (Wyo.)

In this example the invalid heading is a cross reference.

When you click on the Shield Helper to validate this heading, you will find this heading in the middle portion of the window but it has a red check mark next to it which indicates it is an invalid heading.

In the authority record in the bottom portion of the window shown above, notice that this record has a ‘Cross-Reference tab’. This indicates that the heading you are viewing is a cross reference on an authority record for a different subject heading. The 150 tag indicates that the valid heading is really Bakers. The 450 tag contains the invalid (cross reference) heading that is the bibliographic record. When you click on the ‘Get From List’ button and then the ‘Next’ button, the authorized heading Bakers will be inserted into the bibliographic record in place of the invalid heading Bakers and bakeries.  (If you don’t click on the ‘Next’ button but just click the ‘Skip’ button, the invalid heading will not be corrected in the bibliographic record.)

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