Rare Book School

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L-30. Rare Book Cataloging

Deborah J. Leslie

Aimed at catalog librarians who find that their present duties include (or shortly will include) the cataloging of books in their rare or special collections . Attention will be given primarily to cataloging books from the hand-press period, with discussion on c19 and c20. Topics include:

This course is restricted to working catalogers experienced in AACR2, MARC 21, and general cataloging principles and practices. No knowledge of early books is necessary. The goal of the course is to provide practice in each of the primary elements of the rare book catalog record, so that students will be equipped to catalog their institution's rare books and special collections materials. Please note that this course covers early or special printed monographs, not manuscripts, maps, graphics, scrapbooks, &c.

Requirements: In their personal statement, applicants should describe their experience with machine-readable AACR2 cataloging and provide a brief description of the types and date range of materials they expect to catalog with DCRM(B). In addition, applicants are required to submit 1-3 typical bibliographic records of materials they currently are cataloging, preferably original cataloging of modern books or serials.


Course Resources

  • Preliminary Reading List
  • Evaluations for this course:

Course History


Deborah J. Leslie has taught it at least once annually since 1998.


Various instructors taught this RBS course 14 times in this period.