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Create locally preferred subjects for display and search expansion

The WorldCat Discovery Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiative aims to reduce harm in item descriptions. Find information about using a universal template provided by WorldCat Discovery to locally re-map subject headings to display more inclusive language in the WorldCat Discovery interface.

The WorldCat Discovery DEI Initiative aims to reduce harm in item description. Given the global nature of WorldCat Discovery, we acknowledge that there is no one-size-fits-all solution for item description. The first phase of this new functionality provides libraries with the ability to locally re-map subject headings to display locally preferred subjects and facilitate a more inclusive experience for library users in their local community. The second phase will allow libraries to build on their work and define local search expansions to ensure the most relevant results are returned for users.

Local subject re-mapping

Create a spreadsheet to define local re-mapping for subject headings using a universal template provided by WorldCat Discovery. Use the template to replace the existing local subject heading with an updated locally defined subject heading. Upload this template to the OCLC Service Configuration to surface the local inclusive subject heading in your library's WorldCat Discovery interface.

 Note:  Uploading this file does not modify local bibliographic data or the WorldCat record itself; it changes the way subjects display in the user interface for your institution only. With the first phase of this project, the inclusive subject will display on the first term it matches on. An additional release will expand the functionality to allow replacement on all relevant subject matches.

Access the Local subject re-mapping template

Access the Local subject re-mapping template.

 Note: Prior to accessing the template, you must have a Google account. Refer to Create a Google account for more information. 

Download and edit the Local subject re-mapping template

After accessing the template:

  1. Adding to the universal template allows for it to be a collaborative document where libraries can benefit from the re-mapping solutions being defined globally. Add your local subject re-mappings to the universal template, being careful not to delete any previous work.
  2. Download the template.
  3. Navigate to File > Download > Tab Separated Values (.tsv). The template is exported to your system as a tab-separated values sheet and able to be edited locally.
    •  Note: You can export the template as a tab-separated values file (.tsv), however, it may be easier to edit the spreadsheet as an excel document prior to saving it in the proper .tsv format for uploading.

  4. Open the file and populate the sheet to meet your subject heading needs. Refer to the Subject mapping column definitions for more information and for required fields. 
  5. Save the modified file as a tab-separated values (.tsv) file.

Subject mapping column definitions

Find the definitions for the subject re-mapping configuration file. An asterisk (*) after the field name denotes a required field that will be checked by the system upon upload into service configuration.

 Note: Define subject heading mappings that apply across all subject authorities or define mappings for specific thesauri or subject heading schemes by entering them in the 6xx field, 6xx 2nd indicator, and/or 6xx $2 value. This can be done individually or in combination. 

Column Definition

The standard country code as described in Standard country or area codes for statistical use (M49)..

  • Examples: USA, AUS, GBR. 

The institution's unique OCLC symbol.

6xx field

The subject access field for the sensitive subject heading.

6xx 2nd Indicator

The thesaurus a subject term originates from.

6xx 2 value

The source of the subject heading or term.

  • Only required when the second indicator has a value of 7.

The category of the group of terminology that reflects the same value.​ The category name can be defined by the institution and does not need to come from any officially controlled vocabulary. 

Category allows libraries to quickly find work relevant to their user population and relevant to their metadata work. It also helps to categorize the work they are doing to reduce harm in the subject description.

Subject Heading*

The sensitive subject heading to be replaced.

Alternative Heading*

The locally defined, inclusive subject heading your library wishes to display.

  • Multiple local replacement alternative headings can be defined for individual Subject Headings.
    • A subject a library has chosen to replace can match multiple entries in the same local re-mapping file. Each Alternative Heading has its own entry line for the Subject Heading being replaced.
    • When the system matches on multiple local subject replacements in the re-mapping file, all matches will display in the interface for library users. 

Use wildcards to define where subjects are replaced

Leverage wildcards to define rules about where locally preferred, inclusive subjects can display. Where the subject can be replaced is denoted using an asterisk (*). 

Asterisk (*) location Result
Subject Being Replaced* An inclusive subject can replace a subject for display if it occurs at the beginning of a string.
*Subject Being Replaced An inclusive subject can replace a subject for display if it occurs at the end of a string.
*Subject Being Replaced* An inclusive subject can replace a subject for display in the middle of a string.

 Note: For libraries using Chinese, Japanese, or Korean, a subject heading needs to be encased by two asterisks to allow for sub-string replacements like so: **Subject Being Replaced**

Upload the Local subject re-mapping template to the OCLC Service Configuration

Refer to Alternate Subject Headings.

 Caution: The file type must be a tab-separated values (.tsv) file or the upload will not work. The row limit on the spreadsheet is 2,000 rows. We encourage using wildcards, where possible, in order to maximize the number of subject headings that can be changed.

  1. Navigate to the OCLC Service Configuration.
  2. From the left navigation, select the WorldCat Discovery and WorldCat Local module.
  3. Select Search Settings and navigate to the Alternate Subject Headings section.
  4. Toggle on the Display alternative subject headings in search results and item details setting.
  5. Select the Browse button to find and select your tab-separated values file for upload.
  6. Determine whether to configure a custom message for library users. Users will see this language if they click on a locally defined subject replacement, warning them that the original subject will be displayed when the search is run.  

 Note: Once uploaded, the Local subject re-mapping file cannot be downloaded from the OCLC Service Configuration. Retain a local copy for future use.