December 12, 2012

Local RDA Decisions

After participating in the CIG e-forum on RDA in October, a number of issues concerning local RDA practice were highlighted by the Data Services team and the following decisions were made:

Copyright date

RDA only requires the cataloguer to record the copyright date if neither the publication or distribution date are provided (RDA 1.3). The two other options we considered were to always record the copyright date in a separate 264 field even if it is the same as the publishing date, or to enter the copyright date when the publishing date is different (along the lines of AACR2).

The decision was made to go with the latter option so as not to duplicate fields and to provide the user with greater information about the item.

Relationship designators

Warwick has decided to use relationship designators. In the event that none of the designators listed in the RDA toolkit are relevant we would still want to comply with some standard such as MARC 21 relator terms. We would come up with terms ourselves only when absolutely necessary and these would be shared within the team as a list.

At the moment these designators do not display in the catalogue, but we feel it is important to include them given the prominence RDA, FRBR and other standards give to relationship data and how these may be utilised in the future.

Number of creator access points

RDA states that at core level we are only required to have an access point for the first creator, even in a book with two creators. But unlike AACR2 and its ‘rule of three’, RDA also permits all creators to be given access points, regardless of the number.

Our local policy is to continue to use a rule of three but to also include Warwick authors if they appear on the item after this cut-off point. If the cataloguer decides that access points for all creators are required, this will be left to their judgement.


We will follow RDA Appendix A and continue to capitalise words according to the guidelines for the language involved. It was noted that particular care would be required for German language materials.

These initial decisions will be reviewed after RDA goes live for original cataloguing at Warwick in March 2013 and we are coming across other examples on a regular basis.

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