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Overview of Subject Headings

  • Cataloging & Discovery
  • Webinar
  • 2 CE Hours


Libraries use various systems to keep materials organized for our community members. Clear and consistent subject headings play a huge role in users easily finding what they need—both on the shelf and in your online catalog. Whether you’re managing records on the back end or assisting patrons on the front line, a better understanding of where and how subject headings are assigned can help you help your community. 

Attendees of this session will have the opportunity to… 

  • Learn key vocabulary for understanding subject analysis 
  • Review the most popular subject heading systems and their challenges 
  • Examine the differences between subjects, genres, and forms 
  • Explore examples of various types of subject categories in MARC – and why correct coding matters for successful searching 

Who Should Attend

Individuals responsible for editing and maintaining catalog data, staff members tasked with assisting patrons to find materials, and anyone with an interest in the topic.


Sarah Schaff Denison University Library

Sarah Schaff has had the good fortune to work for a handful of Ohio libraries since 2003 – and still loves her work. With a background in philosophy and library science, Sarah currently serves as the Discovery Librarian at Denison, a small liberal arts college east of Columbus. In her 8 to 5 life, Sarah takes care of the invisible systems and online resources that keep the library humming.

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