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OCLC – A Close Look at Archival Records in MARC

“MARC provides no straightforward way to extract all records for “archival materials,” so OCLC Research has scoped a filter to extract the archival subset from WorldCat. The filter itself suggests a rich discussion question: How does one define archival material in the context of the MARC format? For starters, it encompasses materials in every format represented by MARC catalog records. In addition to compiling statistics on field occurrences, the work highlights differences in description from one type of material to another. The data analysis address questions such as these: How often have DACS and other special materials content standards actually been used? Is it true that archivists usually describe materials at the collection level? To what extent do records link to digital content, and for which types of material? Does the archival control byte fulfill its intent to identify all archival descriptions? This free webinar previewed a report that will be published early in 2016…”

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