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Metadata Unit

Circ-on-the-Fly (COF) Procedure

[Last revised:  Sept. 19, 2019 - GLJ]

From time to time, patrons will want to sign out books that do not have barcodes, and which may not exist in the database at all.  We call these books “Circulation-on the-fly” (or “circ-on-the-fly” or COF). 

Loan Desk/Circulation staff will write down the patron information, call number, and author/title on a green “Action Slip”, and they will barcode both the book and “Action Slip” with a double barcode.  The “Action Slip” is picked up by Metadata staff the following morning.

The goal for such “circ-on-the-fly” books is to ensure that there is a Bibliographic record, Holdings record, and Item record (with barcode), and then to use the information on the green “Action Slip” to charge the book out to the patron.

  • Sometimes the book without barcode is part of a multi-volume set, which already has a Bib record and Holdings record, and only lacks an Item record or barcode.  If so, then simply add the barcode to an existing Item record (if an empty Item record exists), or create a new Item record, and add the barcode.

  •  Sometimes the book is an issue of a serial (which is normally not barcoded).  If so, create an Item record for that specific issue (enter enum/chronology fields accordingly), and add the barcode.  (Similar to ILLO policy, serial issues will be allowed to circulate in these instances)

  • Sometimes the book is an added copy or added location to an existing Bib record.  If so, then create a new Holdings record, create a new Item record, and add the barcode.

  • Sometimes there is already an Item record with pre-existing barcode - If so, further investigation will be required to determine the problem and correct the error.  (e.g. Circ staff may have missed a pre-existing barcode affixed inside back cover, or there may have been a mix-up with a related item or perhaps even an altogether different, unrelated item, etc.)

  •  Sometimes the book does not exist in the database at all.  As a temporary solution, use the book information from the “Action Slip” to create (import) a new Bib record, Holdings record (with call number), and Item record with the barcode. Be sure to flag the item to come back for cataloguing review/completion upon return from patron (see *Note & instructions below)

IMPORTANT:  In any and all of these cases, once the Item record and barcode exist, use the patron information on the ”Action Slip” to charge the item out to the patron in Circulation Module.

*NOTE:  If at any time, you need more information to identify the correct edition (or some other aspect) of the book, and you wish to examine the item once it is returned by the patron, flag it for cataloguing review.  In Cataloguing Module, from the Item record, add a pop-up Item Note with a “Route to…” instruction for Circ Staff, plus add any further instructions/reminders for yourself/Cataloguing Staff. Also edit the Item Status to add the status of “Cataloging review”.  Full instructions with e.g. screenshots below.

Flag an Item for Cataloguing Review

  1. Add Item Note in Cataloging Module:

Bring up the Item record, and click on the Edit Item Note button at bottom left side (feather pen with red ‘X’ icon)  Or, from Item menu, select View Notes (Ctrl+N).

A separate Note window will appear.  Click New. This will activate the Note Type drop-down menu - be sure to change the default Note Type to: discharge -- this will ensure that your note will visibly pop-up on the screen once the item is discharged in Circulation module.  (a default “regular” note does not pop-up, and would be easily missed)

With the Note Type: discharge, type a “Route to…” instruction for Circ Staff, plus add any further instructions/reminders for yourself/Cataloguing Staff.  Click OK, and then Close.

  1. Edit Item Status in Cataloguing Module:

Bring up the Item record (if not already), and click on the Edit Item Status button at bottom left side (chart/graph icon)  Or, from Item menu, select View Status (Ctrl+S).

A separate Item Status window will appear.  Click to highlight “Cataloging Review” from the Status List, and then click on the blue up-arrow button to move/add it to the active Status above.  Click OK. Generally, do not worry about or change any other active Status categories that may be present. Back in the Item record, click Save to DB.

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