MARC: An Introduction

MARC: An Introduction

Gain an understanding of MARC, how to use it, and how to create and enter new records.

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Do not be intimidated by MARC! Do terms like fixed and variable fields scare you? Are you put off by subfields and indicators? This class is designed to help you better understand MARC, whether you are a cataloger, reference librarian, interlibrary loan practitioner or support staff. If you are new to the library field or just need a review, a better understanding of MARC will be helpful.

The instructor will present an overview to MARC (Machine-Readable Cataloging) records and related terminology, such as the fixed and variable fields, tags, indicators, subfields, and International Standard Bibliographic Description (ISBD) punctuation marks. We will discuss how MARC tagging and coding of cataloging data is used in bibliographic records. We will set out guidelines for record selection and discuss when to create and enter new records.

Preparation: Review the OCLC publication "Bibliographic Formats and Standards" available online at

This class will be held online. All registered attendees will receive an email with login information a few days prior to the class date.

Additional Information

Additional Information

Date & Time May 25-26-27, 2021
10am - 12pm Eastern
9am - 11am Central
Instructor John Sterbenz
Prerequisites There are no prerequisites.
Credits This workshop has been approved for 6 General Library Education Units (LEUs) for Indiana library staff.
Audience ALL
Topic Cataloging

MCLS is dedicated to providing a harassment-free environment at all meetings and events, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, or religion. We do not tolerate harassment of meeting participants in any form. Attendees violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled from the meeting at the discretion of MCLS. Our complete code of conduct can be found here.

Terms/Registration Information

It is highly recommended that all registrants register for this workshop at least SEVEN DAYS PRIOR to the workshop date. If you register after that, you must additionally send an email to that you have registered past the deadline. You will receive a general email confirmation immediately upon successfully registering for this workshop. All registered attendees will receive an additional email with login information approximately one week prior to the 1st class date. If you do not receive an invitation to the meeting by noon of the day prior, please email

Venue/Technical Information

Online via Zoom

Vendor MCLS

Photo of John Sterbenz

Instructor: John Sterbenz

John Sterbenz earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from The University of Michigan--Dearborn, continuing his schooling with a Master of Information and Library Studies degree awarded by The University of Michigan. He received the faculty rank of Associate Librarian upon appointment at The University of Michigan's Kresge Business Administration Library in 1998, earning a promotion to Senior Associate Librarian in 2016.  Over the years, John has been responsible for the management of Kresge's Access Services/Systems (1998-2000), Technical and Access Services (2000-2004), Technical Services and Library Automation (2004-2012), Technical Services, Collections, and Library Automation (2012-2016), and Electronic Collections Administration (2016-2020) departments.     

In 2020, John left Kresge and University of Michigan to join the Detroit Area Library Network (DALNET) as its Executive Director.  In this role, he works, along with his staff, on matters of interest and concern to DALNET member libraries, responsible for a number of shared systems and technologies.  Starting this new position during a pandemic has certainly been a challenge as all meetings have been virtual--and will continue to be for quite some time!  John has been professionally active with positions on several national, regional and state committees and organizations. Speaking on topics related to Technical Services and general technology, he has served as an instructor for MCLS since 2005.


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Date(s) and time(s):
May 25-26-27, 2021
10am - 12pm Eastern
9am - 11am Central

Single Registration Pricing
Member Price: $ 99.00
Non-Member Price: $ 199.00

Group Registration Pricing
Member Group Price: $ 249.00
Non-Member Group Price: $ 349.00
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