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Use of 655 Field Genre/Form Headings in Voyager: AU Cataloging Department

The 655 field is a new field designed to be used with form or genre headings instead of the traditional 650 field.

For videorecordings, there are often LCSH terms that are actually form headings such as Foreign films and Feature films. These headings describe what a film is, not what it's about. That's why they are considered form headings. These used to be placed in regular 650 fields but should now be placed in 655 fields. The first indicator is blank and the second indicator is 0, to denote that they are LCSH headings. Earlier 655 fields used second indicator 7 and subfield $2 lcsh to indicate the source of the headings, but that practice changed recently to use the same second indicator value for LCSH that is used in the 650 and 651 fields.

Ex. 655 b 0 $a Foreign films.

For works of print fiction, the 655 field can also be used for genre terms, such as mystery stories or science fiction stories. If the terms come from the LCSH, the 655 field will have second indicator 0. If the term comes from another thesaurus such as the Guide to Subject Analysis for Fiction and Drama (GSAFD), the 655 field will have second indicator 7 and subfield $2 gsafd at the end. The subfield $2 contains the abbreviation for the source of the term.

Ex. 650 b 0 $a Science fiction (for a work about science fiction)
Ex. 655 b 0 $a Science fiction (for a novel of science fiction)
Ex. 655 b 7 $a Western novels $2 gsafd (for a western)