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WorldCat Holdings

Find information about where your institution's holdings are visible and how to set and maintain WorldCat holdings.

What are WorldCat holdings?

Holdings are used by libraries to communicate what they currently own or license by associating their unique institution symbol with specific records in WorldCat. Libraries set and maintain their holdings information by using tools and services included in OCLC cataloging subscriptions.  

How are WorldCat holdings used? 

WorldCat holdings information represents the collective inventory of OCLC member libraries. As your library collections evolve, it is extremely important to maintain accurate holdings as this information informs a number of features and capabilities found in other OCLC subscriptions, including FirstSearch/WorldCat Discovery, WorldShare Interlibrary Loan, OCLC Cataloging and Metadata and more. 

Who uses WorldCat holdings?

When a library’s holdings are indicated in WorldCat, that library can take advantage of tools that increase efficiency and save time.  

  • OCLC Cataloging and Metadata subscribers can automatically receive WorldCat updates, which include customizable MARC records when data that you care about in a WorldCat record changes.
  • Library users view WorldCat holdings information in search results in FirstSearch, WorldCat Discovery and to determine which libraries have the resources they need. 
  • Collection management staff rely on accurate WorldCat holdings to inform selection and deselection decisions and support shared print initiatives. 
  • Reference and ILL staff use holdings information to confirm the location of items needed by library users. Plus, accurate holdings information enables identification of appropriate lenders for fulfillment of resource sharing requests. 

How do you set and maintain WorldCat holdings?  

Your OCLC Cataloging and Metadata Subscription includes all the tools you need to set and maintain your WorldCat holdings via a number of approaches depending on your needs. 

  1. Manual record-at-a-time options with your OCLC Cataloging and Metadata Subscription

    Your OCLC Cataloging and Metadata subscription contains four options to manually maintain your holdings in WorldCat.  
  2. Collection-at-a-time options in WorldShare Collection Manager 

    OCLC reduces the need for record-at-a-time holdings management with collection-level capabilities found in WorldShare Collection Manager, including:   

For additional assistance, contact OCLC Support.