New developments in the cataloging world can help libraries better answer questions like: What music do you have for string quartets? What young adult fiction do you have by African American male authors? Do you have any diaries written by pioneer women in Oregon in the late nineteenth century? Do you have any recent movies from China?

Historically, the Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) have included terms both for what something is about (topic) and for what something is (genre or form). Many users are looking for something either as a topic, or as a genre or form, and not for the two things mixed together. Sometimes LCSH makes a clear, albeit not intuitive, distinction. Starting in 2007, the Library of Congress (LC) began work on a new vocabulary, now known as Library of Congress Genre/Form Terms for Library and Archival Materials (LCGFT), to use for genre and form instead of LCSH. In addition, they created two additional new vocabularies: Library of Congress Medium of Performance Thesaurus for Music (LCMPT) for instruments and voices and Library of Congress Demographic Group Terms (LCDGT) for audiences and creators. This article investigates the application and results of using these new, faceted vocabularies.

Author Biography

Kelley McGrath is Metadata Management Librarian at the University of Oregon. She is an experienced media cataloger and an active member of Online Audiovisual Catalogers (OLAC). She has a longstanding interest in the potential of faceted navigation in library catalogs. She is particularly interested in ways to make library metadata more useful for humans and machines and ways to design discovery interfaces to make better use of library metadata.

Copyright statement

© 2019 Kelley McGrath



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.