Cataloger, Published Material, Harvard Radcliffe Institute’s Schlesinger Library

By IS Lab August 2, 2021

This post was originally published on this site.

About the Position

Reporting to the Head of Published and Printed Materials and working in a special collections environment, the Cataloger, Published Material at the Harvard Radcliffe Institute’s Schlesinger Library performs a variety of complex technical and specialized library functions in relation to the preparation of bibliographic and holdings records for monographs and serials, including original cataloging of serials, rare books and pamphlets, and a variety of other library materials.

Responsibilities of the position include:

  • Creates original cataloging in OCLC for various library materials in a variety of languages and subject fields according to current metadata content and structure standards. Does subject analysis and research to verify supporting authority records following national standards and local practice.
  • Responsible for serials bibliographic cataloging and the creation of detailed holdings records often from multiple workflows following CONSER guidelines.
  • Performs complex copy cataloging in all subjects collected by the library, including materials in Romance and other languages.
  • Records detailed copy specific physical description and provenance information following established practice for holdings records in Harvard’s Alma system for all items cataloged.
  • Performs MARC record work within Harvard Library’s catalog and OCLC’s Worldcat to maintain accurate holdings by correcting errors, updating, enhancing, reconciling discrepancies, and reporting duplicates.
  • Collaborates as part of a team of catalogers and metadata specialists in resolving difficult cataloging problems and stalled items. Consults with and advises colleagues about cataloging rules and practices. Keeps current with Harvard Library cataloging best practices and national standards.
  • Communicates with Harvard Library Technical Services (LTS) to understand and resolve Alma system or other technical problems.
  • Stays informed of evolving technical services trends, changing practices and standards, new cataloging software applications and local technology changes; participates in the development of local policies; suggests innovations and generates ideas for improving workflows and creating efficiencies.
  • Works with Research Services librarians and other colleagues to provide intellectual and physical access to materials in a timely manner.
  • Responsible for occasional reference desk shifts, serves on library-wide teams and committees.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

The successful candidate will possess:

  • ALA-accredited MLS (Master’s in Library Science).
  • Three years of professional library cataloging experience in an academic, special, or research library with detailed, working knowledge of cataloging practices and procedures and of library automated systems.
  • Must have experience with serials cataloging, including original cataloging and the creation of detailed, accurate holdings following CONSER guidelines.
  • Must understand authority records and authority control and be familiar with the Name Authority Cooperative Program (NACO).
  • Experience cataloging in OCLC’s Connexion and working with Connexion templates, macros, and OCLC authority records is strongly preferred.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of current international data content and structure standards related to bibliographic, holding and authority cataloging such as MARC 21, RDA, AACR2, LCSH, LCRI, CONSER, BIBCO, PCC, NAF, LCGT, RBMS controlled vocabularies, and DCRM(B).
  • Strong written, verbal, and listening skills.
  • Knowledge of U.S. women’s and culinary history.
  • Competence with Microsoft Office software.
  • Strong project management and organizational skills and the ability to meet project deadlines.
  • Ability to prioritize and balance long-term projects and daily cataloging workflow.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with colleagues, and other diverse groups and individuals in a collegial manner.
  • Ability to be flexible and adaptable in the adoption of new software, project protocols, and workflows.
  • Working knowledge of one or more foreign languages.
  • Must be able to work both independently and as part of a department team with shared goals.

Physical Requirements:

Employee must have the ability to sit at a desk for a minimum of seven hours a day and complete tasks requiring repetitive use of hands (keyboarding). This position involves regularly lifting and must be able to lift 40 pounds, manage cartloads of material weighing up to 40 pounds and climb ladders to retrieve or re-shelf collections.

Working Conditions:

  • The job is performed at the Schlesinger Library in a temperature-controlled office environment generally between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM Monday through Friday. Occasional work on Saturday will be required to cover reference shifts.
  • There may be limited exposure to dust and mold.


The salary for this position has been budgeted at $65,000 to $75,000 annually.

How to apply:

Interested applicants must apply for the Cataloger, Published Material position through Harvard Careers, Harvard University’s online employment application system. Applications will be reviewed upon receipt.