INFO 248-01
INFO 248-13
Beginning Cataloging and Classification
Fall 2019 Syllabus

Shahrzad Khosrowpour
Office Hours: By appointment set via email

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Canvas Information: Courses will be available beginning on August 21st at 6 am PT, unless you are taking an intensive or a one-unit or two-unit class that starts on a different day. In that case, the class will open on the first day that the class meets.

Course Description

Theory and practice of bibliographic control including the study of representative cataloging using descriptive cataloging standards (RDA with reference to AACR2), machine-based representation using MARC format and other standards, subject representation and its analysis, and classification using Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), Library of Congress Classification (LCC), and Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC).

Course Requirements

Assignments cover topics that include:

  • Descriptive cataloging (supports  CLO1CLO2CLO3, and CLO5)

  • Authority control (supports CLO2 and CLO3)

  • Subject headings/LCSH (supports CLO1CLO2, and CLO3)

  • Library of Congress Classification (supports CLO1 and CLO3)

  • Dewey Decimal Classification (supports CLO1 and CLO3)

  • Overall issues and policies involved in cataloging & classification (supports CLO4)




Percentage of Final Grade

Assignment 1 (Descriptive Cataloging) CLO1 CLO2  CLO5

9/17/19 by 11:59 pm


Assignment 2 (Access Points-Authority Control) CLO2  

10/8/19 by 11:59 pm


Assignment 3 (LCSH-Library of Congress Subject Headings) CLO1 CLO3

11/12/19 by 11:59 pm


Assignment 4 (Library of Congress Classification-Dewey Decimal Classification) CLO1 CLO3

12/9/19 by 11:59 pm


5 Exercises                                              CLO1 CLO2 CLO3 CLO4 CLO5

9/3/ 9/24;10/15;10/29;11/19 (All due by 11:59 pm)


Discussion Participation                                                    CLO1 CLO2 CLO3 CLO4 CLO5

Ongoing (Some weeks required as it appears on the To Do Weekly List).


Classes start on Wednesdays at 12:00 am and will run through next Tuesdays, except Week 16, which ends on a Monday (the last day of classes on 12/9/2019).

Class participation includes the weekly discussion forums, some weeks are required to participate as it appears on the To Do Weekly List. This participation could be creating a new discussion or making a comment on other posts, or an idea, a thought, etc. related to the course content.

All assignments and exercises are due on Tuesdays by 11:59 pm, except assignment 4 which is due on the last day of classes on Monday, 12/9/2019 by 11:59 pm.

Late assignments will only be accepted with prior notification and timely communication with your professor.

There is no final exam for this course.   

The course consists of 4 modules and each module includes different numbers of weeks to focus on specific topics of the module.  

Course Calendar






Aug. 21-27            

1- Introduction

Introduce yourselves to the class


Aug 28-Sept. 3

2- Descriptive Cataloging                       



Sep. 4-10

2- Descriptive Cataloging   

IFLA, ISBD, FRBR, & more


Sep. 11-17

2- Descriptive Cataloging   

Descriptive Cataloging


Sep. 18-24

2- Descriptive Cataloging   

Choosing MARC Records


Sep. 25- Oct. 1

2- Descriptive Cataloging   

Access Points & Authority Control


Oct. 2-8

2- Descriptive Cataloging   

Review on Descriptive Cataloging 


Oct. 9-15

3- Subject Cataloging

Aboutness/Subject Analysis


Oct. 16-22

3- Subject Cataloging

Subject Cataloging 


Oct. 23-29

3- Subject Cataloging



Oct. 30-Nov. 5

3- Subject Cataloging

Subject Headings & Classification


Nov. 6-12

3- Subject Cataloging

More Thoughts on Subject Cataloging


Nov. 13-19

4- Present & Future 

Cataloging Librarian & Responsibilities


Nov. 20-26

4- Present & Future 



Nov. 27-Dec. 3

4- Present & Future 

Course Review


Dec. 4-9

4- Present & Future 

 No Lecture--Focus on Assignment 4

Course Workload Expectations

Success in this course is based on the expectation that students will spend, for each unit of credit, a minimum of forty-five hours over the length of the course (normally 3 hours per unit per week with 1 of the hours used for lecture) for instruction or preparation/studying or course related activities including but not limited to internships, labs, clinical practica. Other course structures will have equivalent workload expectations as described in the syllabus.

Instructional time may include but is not limited to:
Working on posted modules or lessons prepared by the instructor; discussion forum interactions with the instructor and/or other students; making presentations and getting feedback from the instructor; attending office hours or other synchronous sessions with the instructor.

Student time outside of class:
In any seven-day period, a student is expected to be academically engaged through submitting an academic assignment; taking an exam or an interactive tutorial, or computer-assisted instruction; building websites, blogs, databases, social media presentations; attending a study group;contributing to an academic online discussion; writing papers; reading articles; conducting research; engaging in small group work.

Course Prerequisites

INFO 202

Course Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Apply standardized cataloging tools to catalog and classify materials in different formats.
  2. Describe the basic workings of automated catalogs and how the process of cataloging and classification impacts them.
  3. Define the impact of cataloging decisions on user retrieval.
  4. Identify current issues in cataloging, cataloging policy, and organization of new formats.
  5. Describe basic cataloging and how it fits into the profession of librarianship.

Core Competencies (Program Learning Outcomes)

INFO 248 supports the following core competencies:

  1. G Demonstrate understanding of basic principles and standards involved in organizing information such as classification and controlled vocabulary systems, cataloging systems, metadata schemas or other systems for making information accessible to a particular clientele.


Recommended Textbooks:

  • Chan, L. M., & Salaba, A. (2016). Cataloging and classification: An introduction (4th ed.). Rowman & Littlefield. Available through Amazon: 1442232498arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Welsh, A., & Batley, S. (2012). Practical cataloging: AACR2, RDA and MARC21. Neal-Schuman. Available through Amazon: 1555707432arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

Grading Scale

The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:

97 to 100 A
94 to 96 A minus
91 to 93 B plus
88 to 90 B
85 to 87 B minus
82 to 84 C plus
79 to 81 C
76 to 78 C minus
73 to 75 D plus
70 to 72 D
67 to 69 D minus
Below 67 F


In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:

  • C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
  • B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work or undergraduate (for BS-ISDA);
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA, Informatics, BS-ISDA) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation. You must repeat the class if you wish to stay in the program. If - on the second attempt - you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
  • A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.

Graduate Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA). Undergraduates must maintain a 2.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

Per University Policy S16-9, university-wide policy information relevant to all courses, such as academic integrity, accommodations, etc. will be available on Office of Graduate and Undergraduate Programs' Syllabus Information web page at: Make sure to visit this page, review and be familiar with these university policies and resources.

In order to request an accommodation in a class please contact the Accessible Education Center and register via the MyAEC portal.

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