OVERVIEWS OF THE JOB AND BASIC INFORMATION
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT DREW LIBRARY AS A
The United States Congress, recognizing the importance of citizen access to government
information, established the Depository Library Program (DLP) in the late nineteenth century.
This program designates certain libraries (at least one in each Congressional district) to receive
government publications free of charge, so that every American has access to those
publications. In return, depository libraries must follow specific requirements in terms of how
those publications are processed, how effectively they are made available, and how long they
must remain in the library's collection.
Drew has been a depository since 1939. We are what is called a "selective depository"-we
don't receive every publication obtained by the Government Printing Office for the FDLP.
Instead, our Documents Librarian makes a yearly selection of which categories of items will best
serve our user community, which includes the general public for our district, in addition to Drew's
students, faculty, and staff. Thus the U.S. documents collection is the only one in the library
which, excepting its Reference items, may be checked out by the (local) public at large.
The responsibility of our office is to process the materials we receive from the FDLP, and
other government publications we get directly in the mail, according to the guidelines of the
Depository program. By doing our work accurately and keeping the ultimate goal of easy citizen
access in mind, we are contributing to the democratic process. (If you doubt it, consider the
availability of government publications in various other parts of the world.) And of course, we are
also providing the Drew community with a wide variety of excellent research materials. Our work
is complicated and not infrequently confusing, but it deserves the very best efforts we can make.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT SUDOC NUMBERS
Drew University Library uses both the Dewey Decimal classification system and Library of Congress to
organize most of its collection. You may be familiar with other libraries which use the Library of Congress system,
instead. But there is another classification system for federal government publications: the
Superintendent of Documents System, generally called the SuDoc (or SuDocs) system. Like
many (not all) depositories, Drew uses this system to organize its U.S. documents collection.
Both the Dewey and LC systems arrange publications according to their subjects: political
science, agriculture, women's history, etc. The SuDoc system, in contrast, organizes
publications on the basis of which federal agency published them: such as the Department of
State, or a division of the Department of the Treasury, or the Office of the Vice-President, or a
The major divisions of this system are represented by specific letters: "A" for publications
of the Department of Agriculture, . S" for State, "D" for Defense, "Y" for the Congress. The
numbers and letters which come after this basic indicator further specify the subdivision of the
larger department, if relevant, the general type of document being represented, and, if needed,
information to distinguish a particular document from others in a group or series. As you work
with SuDoc numbers, you will become familiar with some of these patterns. But you do not need
to understand all of their details to do your job effectively.
HOW SUDOC NUMBERS ARE WRITTEN
SuDoc numbers may be written either horizontally or vertically. Switching one from
horizontal to vertical (which is what you will do when you process documents) is easily done.
Take the SuDoc "ED 1.310/2:375888" (the quotes are added). The first line will always end with
the period: the second line will always end with the colon; additional lines should end with a
slash if there is one. Accordingly, our example SuDoc would be vertically written as:
The first two lines of the SuDoc (up to the colon) are what we call its "stem." They
generally identify a particular type of document produced by a particular agency or sub-agency;
the rest of the SuDoc usually specifies the individual publication. It is important that you know
what is meant when reference is made to "the stem."
When you write a vertical SuDoc, sometimes space constraints and the lack of a slash
mark will force you to break a third line in some other way. Avoid this if possible, but try to find a
logical break point when needed.
HOW SUDOC NUMBERS ARE PUT IN ORDER
SuDoc numbers follow basic alphanumeric order--by the alphabet and the numbers. Thus
S 2 .3/7:678 comes before S 2.3/8:678, and also comes before S 2 .3/7:679. The Documents
shelves begin with A (Agriculture) and end with Y (Congress).
There are two additional rules pertaining to SuDoc order. They are:
1) Letters before numbers
2) Nothing before something
"Letters before numbers" is easily understood. Y 4.C 4:AC 6 comes before Y 4.C 4:122.
This rule will usually come up when you get to the third line of two SuDocs.
"Nothing before something" means that a blank space in one SuDoc is understood to go
before any letter or number in the analogous position of another SuDoc. For instance, E 4.5:SE
4 goes before E 4.5:SE 4/2; in this case the "blank space" is after the last digit of the first SuDoc.
Another example is that PREX 3.2: 111 goes before PREX 3.2/1: 111. In this case, there is nol a
literal blank space after the "2" in the first SuDoc, but since ordering is done on the basis of each
line of the stem (defined in II/Al2/a) , the blank is implied.
Another manifestation of "nothing before something" is when all or part of a third-plus line
is in brackets: [Yr.], [Pt.], [Keyword], [No.].
SUDOC ORDER FOR HEARINGS (Y 4.)
An exception to these rules is the ordering of Senate Hearings and Prints. These
documents will have "S.HRG." or "S.PRT." as their third lines. Sometimes, the rules of SuDoc
order as given above would dictate that these documents or their catalog cards would be placed
among House of Representatives Hearings with a third line beginning with "S." We do not,
however, order Hearings in that way; the publications of the two houses of Congress are always
kept separate and Prints always follow Hearings for their given Committees. This must be kept
in mind when shelving Y 4.s or filing their catalog cards.
TASK PROGRESSION IN STUDENT EMPLOYEES' OFFICE WORK
The following list outlines what student employees of this office are trained to do, and in
what order they are generally trained to do it. Refer to it as desired, to get a feel for the job, to
review your progress, or to see if you need to go over any particular tasks appropriate to your
level of responsibility.
Marking "paper" and "electronic" (DVDs etc) docs
Correct handling of "separates lists"
Correct handling of items not received : claims & rainchecks - refer to supervisor
Correct handling of "unselected" items received : delivered claims & rainchecks, new Item - refer to supervisor
numbers, duplicates - refer to supervisor
Logging processed Shipping Lists (SL)
Correct entry of items on existing cards - for items that arrive without Shipping Lists via direct mail (Federal Register (mf); LSA (mf) State magazine; Library of Congress Magazine).
Correct sorting of entered items going to other departments
Awareness of location designations on card but not on doc
Correct handling of CD-ROMs
Correct entry and sorting of microfiche
Awareness of when to discard new card and utilize an existing one
Awareness of when related cards might perhaps be combined in a single one
SHELVING PAPER DOCUMENTS
Correct shelving of Hearings
Correct shelving of other documents
Prompt attention to misshelved documents, lighting problems, etc.
Prompt attention to need for periodical/pamphlet boxes
Performing appropriate Shifts of documents, or alerting supervisor to need for assistance to do
Attention to need to file fiche, and correct filing
Checking returned fiche box to re-file used fiche
THE ART OF THE POST-IT
Student employees are expected and encouraged to ask questions about general work
procedures and particular situations. Guessing is not encouraged. Please first try to find the
answer you seek in this manual; this is important because virtually all student employees
ultimately work some, or most, of their hours without supervision . Familiarity with the manual
adds to confidence in such situations. If you find the manual to be confusing or inadequate on a
particular point, that is a valuable observation . Share it with your supervisor. And of course, if
your supervisor is present, asking questions is always encouraged , especially in the earlier
stages of training.
There are many situations when, having followed the procedures in the manual, you need
to leave a problematical document for your supervisor with an explanation of how you sought to
resolve the problem. For these communications, and many others, we use post-it notes.
Time can be saved if you routinely include certain information in your post-it notes.
Please, always include:
Your first name
And include in most cases:
The Shipping List # involved
The SuDoc # involved
The Item # involved
Specifics of any steps you've already taken
PAPER DOCUMENTS MARKING
Check off Item numbers selected on SL;
process each document by marking with SuDoc # and with date stamp;
check for receipt of all selected items; act on any discrepancies; leave a note for supervisor.
As documents are processed, sort into a SuDoc-ordered pile.
MICROFICHE DOCUMENTS MARKING
Check off Item numbers selected on SL;
process by date stamping envelope;
check SL for receipt of all selected items; act on any discrepancies; leave a note for supervisor.
As fiche are processed , sort into a SuDoc-ordered pile.
PROCESSING DEPOSITORY SHIPMENTS
WHAT'S COVERED IN THIS SECTION
This section of the Manual describes the procedures you will follow to process incoming
However, it is a fact of this job that the shipments we receive are not always exactly as
they should be, and even when they are, some of the items in a given box may be confusing to
someone who has not previously encountered them.
SUMMARY OF PROCEDURES
This is intended as a quick review for those who have familiarized themselves with the
content of this section.
THE BASIC PROCEDURES PRIOR TO PROCESSING DOCUMENTS
CHECK FOR OUR DEPOSITORY NUMBER. After opening a box, look for #0371 OR #371
written on the inside flap; notify your supervisor in the unlikely event that another number is
CHECK OFF ITEM NUMBERS WE SELECT. On the first SL you remove, put a
penciled checkmark to the left of every Item number which also appears in our "Item List."
EVALUATE YOUR SITUATION ONCE YOU'VE CHECKED OFF THE ITEM
NUMBERS. Is it consistent with whether or not you've received documents along with the SL?
CHECK OFF THE DOCUMENT AS RECEIVED. For each document in the current
batch locate by title on the SL, confirm that the match is exact; then put a checkmark to the right
of the Item number to indicate receipt. Complete this step before processing any individual
MARK THE DOCUMENT WITH A SUDOC NUMBER. Then copy the
appropriate SuDoc number from the SL to the document.
MARK THE DOCUMENT WITH A DATE-STAMP. Date-stamp the document,
using the SL's date, not the current date. The SL date must be checked for each SL in the box.
SORT THE PROCESSED DOCUMENTS Place the document in its correct
COMPLETE THE SHIPPING LIST AFTER PROCESSING ITS DOCUMENTS
When the batch is processed , check to see if all Item numbers selected have been duly .
received. Then scan the SL for newly created Item numbers and other special messages, taking
appropriate action if these are found . This done, if all items selected have been received , total
the number of documents or individual fiche, and write that number and today's date at the top of
the SL. Add the SL to the pile in the left top corner of the desk.
If we have received any materials you cannot identify, or if it appears that we did not
receive an item which we selected, see Section IV of the Manual before totaling/dating the SL.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE YOU START PROCESSING
THE BOXES WE RECEIVE
We receive most of our paper and electronic documents from the Government Printing
Office in what we call "standard" boxes, always 12" long X 9" wide X 9 1/2" deep, containing
multiple items. We also receive paper, electronic, and microfiche documents packaged
individually, or as a series, in various-sized separate boxes or envelopes; most of these are what
we call these "separates" shipments. Separates shipments should always have a Shipping List
number (see below) on their mailing label. Non-standard shipments without an SL number on
the label most often contain microfiche from various government contractors, whose names will
probably be visible on the package or envelope.
All of the above shipments contain our depository selections. In addition, we receive
certain individual, unboxed documents in our office's mail, not all of which are depository
selections; but which we also add to our collection . We call them "direct mail" documents and
they are not handled with the procedures described in this section (instead, see Section V) .
WHAT ARE SHIPPING LISTS?
Shipping Lists (SLs) are similar to invoices, listing most of Ihe documents which are sent
to us as Pilrt of the Depository Library Program. They differ from invoices in that they
include items which we do not receive, as well as those which we do. Every standardized box
which we receive will contain SLs, often many of them. Students who process the documents in
those boxes begin the process by determining which items on each SL we ought to be receiving,
and then checking off each item as it is processed, so that we can see if anything is missing or
Microfiche received from contractors also should have the SL included in their package.
Separates shipments, in contrast, will never have an SL packed along with them;
instead, Separates SLs come in the standard boxes, mixed in with the SLs for the documents
shipped in the standard box.
All SLs look essentially the same (with some variation among the contractors). Each is
numbered, in order of issuance, from the start of the "selection cycle" (the period in which new
item number selections become effective, which is in the fall) . SL numbers, also, are broken into
four different serres based on document type. Each of the four series has an identifying letter
which is hyphenated after the SL number. Thus, the numbers of SLs listing paper documents
end in "-P," microfiche documents in "-M," and electronic/multimedia documents (I.e., CD-ROMs,
floppy disks, videotapes) in "-E." Separates documents end in "-S."
All SLs have three columns, indicating in turn the Item number, SuDoc
number, and full title of each document on the list. Sometimes additional messages to
Depository Libraries wil l also appear in this third column .
We sort SLs by number within each of the four series (-P, -M, -S , and -E) after they have
been fully processed , log them, and keep them for several years. It is not uncommon to refer to
them to settle questions about particular documents.
PICKING A BOX TO PROCESS
When boxes are brought to the office from the mailroom, the person handling the mail
should have written the date of arrival on the side of each box . Be aware of these dates and
choose the box with the oldest date to process first. Open one box at a time, and check to see
that it's right side up (look at the mailing label). Then find a pencil (preferably with an eraser)-we
never use pens in documents processing.
THE BASIC PROCEDURES PRIOR TO PROCESSING DOCUMENTS
CHECK FOR OUR DEPOSITORY NUMBER
If this is a "standard box," look for a depository number, which is generally written on the
inside of one of the top flaps. Every depository library is assigned a number; ours is 0371 . If you
see any other number written there, don't process any of the box's contents, and tell your
supervisor; that box was intended for another library. (It doesn't happen often, but it does
CHECK OFF ITEM NUMBERS WE SELECT
Remove the documents from the box or the microfiche from the envelope, one at a time,
until you reach a Shipping List (SL). If the box is right-side up, the SL pertaining to a group of
documents will be under them. Don't remove any more documents until you've processed this
One caution : many of our microfiche contractors staple multiple SLs together. If you see
any SLs which arrive stapled, do not assume that it is a single SL. Check the numbers on top
and separate as needed. There is a staple remover in the desktop box.
WHAT ARE ITEM NUMBERS?
The Item numbers are the numbers along the left column of the SL. Each number refers
to a particular type of document, and it is by selecting from these numbers, every year, that the
Documents Librarian indicates to the Depository Library Program which publications our library
wishes to receive: On any given SL, we may select all of the items included, or some, or none.
Your immediate job is to determine if we've selected any lIem numbers on the SL you've just
CHECK ITEM NUMBERS AGAINST THE Item List
Compare the Item numbers on the SL with those listed in the "Item Numbers Received at
Drew," a printout with a blue cover which is kept in the bottom right corner of the work desk. If
an Item number on the SL is printed or written in pencil in the "Item List," put a check to the left
of that number on the SL. Be sure the Item number is identical to the one in the item list: 142-K03
is not the same as 142-K, for instance. Also, don't check off an item number on the SL if the
Item list shows it written in red ink, because that's how we indicate an item number we were
"offered" as a new. item and decided not to select. (This, and other variations in Item List entries,
is explained in the guide taped to the Item List's inside top cover. It's essential that you take a
few minutes to read it over.)
This procedure of checking for item numbers selected applies to all SLs, for documents of
any format: paper, ele ctronic, or microfiche.
EVALUATE YOUR SITUATION ONCE YOU'VE CHECKED
OFF THE ITEM NUMBERS
When you've reviewed all the Item numbers on a given SL, you will find one of four
WE SELECTED ONE OR MORE ITEM NUMBERS, AND THERE ARE ONE
OR MORE DOCUMENTS ALONG WITH THE SL
This is the most common situation. Process the documents one at a time as described in
below (summarized above).
WE HAVEN'T SELECTED ANY ITEM NUMBERS ON THE LIST, AND
THERE AREN'T ANY DOCUMENTS ALONG WITH THE SL
This is also quite usual, particularly with microfiche shipments. Put a zero on the top of
the list, between the words "Classification No." and "Title". Then write today's month and date to
the right of the word "Title." Put the list in the upper left corner of the desk; there mayor may not
be a pile of SLs there already. If there is an existing SL pile, this SL can go on the top of the
WE SELECTED ONE OR MORE ITEM NUMBERS, BUT THERE AREN'T
ANY DOCUMENTS ALONG WITH THE SL
You need to figure out jf we're missing something we should have received . Refer SL to
WE HAVEN'T SELECTED ANY ITEM NUMBERS ON THE LIST, BUT
THERE ARE DOCUMENTS OR OTHER ITEMS ALONG WITH THE SL
Why did we get these items, and what do we do with them? If they're microfiche, be sure
you're not dealing with multiple SLs stapled together--this is a very common cause of confusion.
THE BASIC PROCEDURES FOR PROCESSING THE DOCUMENTS
The following procedures oefine what it means to "process" a document which we have
received in a depository shipment. They cover all formats: paper, microfiche, and electronic.
They apply to microfiche which arrive in contractors' separate mailings, as well as to microfiche
which arrive in the standard boxes; and they apply to "separates."
CHECK OFF THE DOCUMENT AS RECEIVED
For each document, you start processing by finding its listing on the SL, searching by the
title. Be sure that you have identified an exact match, keeping in mind such variants as volume
numbers, dates, name of states, etc.
With receipt confirmed , put a check mark to the right of the document's Item number.
CONSIDERATIONS IN CHECKING OFF MICROFICHE
You need to check if all fiche associated with each Item number have been received , so
look to see if there are more than one fiche in the fiche envelope. Fiche are numbered, and the
one on top should tell you how many are associated with that particular document (i.e ., "Fiche 1
of 9"]. If there should be more than one fiche for a given document, you've got to check them
individually (tedious though this process is, it's our only chance to claim missing fiche, which we
can do, if they're from the contractors). If you find that one or more fiche are missing, finish
processing the box or envelope to see if the missing fiche turn up. If they don't, circle item to be claimed .
With receipt of some number of fiche confirmed, you can write the total number of
individual fiche received for each SuDoc listing to the right of, or slightly below, that SuDoc-rather
than making a check to the right of the Item number as you would do for paper, even if
there is only one fiche in the envelope.
By the way, if an individual fiche SL has multiple pages, feel free to bring them under
control by stapling them together. That's why we keep a stapler on the work desk.
MARK THE DOCUMENT WITH A SUDOC NUMBER
Marking involves two procedures: writing on the document its unique SuDoc number, as
designated on the Shipping List; and stamping it with the Library's name/SL's date.
When you mark a document, remember the needs of library users; write neatly and don't
obscure significant features of the document (text, pictures, etc.) if you can avoid doing so.
HOW TO COPY A SUDOC FROM THE SL ONTO A DOCUMENT
SuDoc numbers should be copied down exactly as they are printed on the SL, transferring
them from horizontal to vertical format. Be careful to use upper casel/ower case
letters precisely as the SL does, and to clearly show any blank spaces between letters and
numbers...don't crunch the SuDoc together in an effort to save space. Without those blank
spaces the document won't be shelved properly in accordance with the "nothing before
WHERE TO WRITE THE SUDOC, AND WHY TO WRITE IT THERE
Write the number in the lovver left corner of the front of the document unless there's a very
compelling reason to place it elsewhere, or the SP List indicates otherwise. Remember that all
our work in this office is a preliminary to the document's taking its place on the library shelves,
and that its identifying number must be placed where someone browsing through the shelves, or
trying to return the document to its proper location, can see the number most read ily--just as with
a library book.
So if the document is a (paperback) book, or has a sufficiently wide spine, it logically
follows that you are encouraged to write the SuDoc on the spine rather than on the front cover
corner. On a "flat" document, the SuDoc is most easily seen on the left edge (imagine that you
are pulling the document a little ways out from the shelf, to check its number). We specify the
bottom corner for consistency, but an upward shift, if necessary, is permissible. A rightward
shift, however, is to be avoided .
It's OK to cover up a bit of the government department's name, or a small bit of a large
picture (with a label), in order to place the SuDoc in its correct place. If there's really something
in the corner that shouldn't be covered, try at least to keep the label/writing along the left edge of
the document, as indicated abovb. Ask for help if you're unsure about the handling of a
WRITING SUDOC NUMBERS ON A COLORED BACKGROUND
Some documents have covers so dark that pencil writing won't show clearly (hold at arm's
length to check), and some lack open space in the bottom left corner. For these situations we
have small white labels in the cardboard box on the right side of the desk. Always place them
vertically, and don't hesitate to use them. When you begin to shelve, you will appreciate not
having to hold a document in front of your nose in order to identify its SuDoc, and library users
appreciate that, too. .
WRITING SUDOC NUMBERS ON CONGRESSIONAL HEARINGS
Hearings' SuDocs all begin with Y 4 . They are the exception to our rule about breaking
third-plus SuDoc lines at a slash; instead, put S.HRG. on the third line and the hearing
number (i.e., 103-122) on the fou ,:h line. This conforms with our longstanding practice, and it
makes shelving easier, as you'll eventually see.
WRITING SUDOC NUMBERS ON GLOSSY PAPER
If the paper of the document is too glossy to write on (or you think the writing might
smear) , use one of our small white labels as a base for writing the SuDoc. Place the label
WRITING SUDOC NUMBERS ON MICROFICHE
Microfiche almost always have the SuDoc already printed across their top lines; if they
don't, write the number in with a Sharpie fine-point permanent marker, kept in the box on the
right side of the desktop. You can also correct the printed SuDoc with this marker, if necessary.
WRITING SUDOC NUMBERS ON CD-ROMS, DVDs AND FLOPPY DISKS
For CD-ROMs and DVDs, the SuDoc goes on a small label in the lower left corner of the "jewel box"
or paper case . If the inserted documentation is listed separately on the SL (an unusual
circumstance), it has to have its own SuDoc written on it. For floppy disks, write the SuDoc on a
label with fine-point permanent marker, then affix the label to the disk. If you are unsure how to
handle these items, leave them for your supervisor with a post-it (or ask) .
WRITING SUDOC NUMBERS ON HARD-COVER DOCUMENTS
Write the SuDoc in the 10wAr left corner of the right-hand inside page. Use a label if
needed. If there are aesthetic considerations, feel free to consult. These documents will have
spine labels added later on, for shelving purposes.
WRITING SUDOC NUMBERS ON DOCUMENTS TOO LARGE TO FIT ON
THE REGULAR SHELVES (OVERSIZE)
If the document is too large to be housed on a standard-sized shelf, we will put it in a
special section for oversized items. There is a small stamp for the word "oversize" in the
cardboard box on the desk. Stamp this location indicator over the SuDoc. Large posters , however, will
generally go to the Oversize section. Ask your supervisor for guidance on any particular
WRITING SUDOC NUMBERS ON DOCUMENTS WITH UNBOUND
Most often these have holes for placement in a hypothetical binder (unlikely ever to
appear) . We keep boxes of various sized brass fasteners for securing these documents; they're
kept on the shelves to your right. Select the smallest fastener that will secure the pages without
falling through the holes, and only use two of them , for the top and bottom holes. Attach the
bottom one first, tearing open that corner of the plastic wrapper, before you remove the rest of
the plastic Then process normally. If there are no holes in the pages, keep them in the plastic
wrapper, but tear it open sufficiently to write in the SuDoc and use the date stamp; add a post-it
which says "Needs manila envelope." If you think the plastic should not be opened (for whatever
reason), write the SuDoc and the SL date on the post-it, also, and leave the document for your
WRITING SUDOC NUMBERS ON DOCUMENTS WITH MULTIPLE
For instance, an envelope holding a series of maps, or a folder holding a variety of
publications; there isn't a simple way to handle these because of their variety. The general
guideline is that we want to identify every individual piece, so if it's separated from its holder it
can be correctly returned . Generally Ihis would mean put the SuDoc on each "piece." This may
not be practical in every individual instance, and at times using the date stamp alone on each
piece may have to suffice. So if in doubt, ask your supervisor or leave a note. However, these
guidelines assume that the Shipping List is only giving you one SuDoc number for the
"document," despite its multiple components. If the individual "pieces" are listed separately on
the SL, then they each get Ihe number indicated, period .
WRITING SUDOC NUMBERS ON FOLDED DOCUMENTS
If a folded document unfolds to a size which permits easy shelving, don't hesitate to unfold
it and place the SuDoc in the lower left corner as usual. Feel free to position the document with
the text going the "wrong" direction if it makes for a more logical shelving position. These
determinations are easier for those with shelving experience, but imagination will usually suffice.
Similarly, if Ihe unfolded do~ument becomes too large or unwieldy to shelve, it may remain
folded , and usually you will want to shelve it with the fold facing outward, like the spine of a book.
The SuDoc may be placed accordingly, however strange that looks when the document is
There may be some overriding reason why the above guidelines should not apply to a
given document. By all means, consult with your supervisor if marking a particular folded
document is problematic.
MARK THE DOCUMENT WITH A DATE-STAMP
The Documents office has three date stamps for U.S. publications. One is kept near the
Direct Mail box and is used for Direct Mail items and others which did not appear on a Shipping
List. The other two, kept on the work desktop, are for items which did appear on a Shipping List-
in other words, the documents addressed in this section , One of these stamps is older and its
dates stop at 1995; the one likely to be out on the desktop is the one you will use. It will stamp
Drew Library's name, plus "Government Documents Shipping List Date [jenneheise:Date] ."
This SL date stamp must be adjusted to reflect the date at the top of the SL you are
processing (not the current calendar date!). Every depository document we process should be
routinely stamped as part of the marking process.
HOW TO DATE-STAMP A PAPER DOCUMENT
You should set the date to conform to the one on your current SL as soon as you start
processing its documents. There will be different SL dates packed in the same box, so this has
to be checked every time you start a new SL. (If you stamp some documents with the wrong
date by mistake, just go back and correct them with a penciL)
WHERE TO DATE-STAMP A PAPER DOCUMENT IF THERE ARE
PROBLEMS WITH USING THE FRONT/COVER
After documents have been checked in and marked, they are sorted: put in specific places
on the desk, in preparation for the next step in their processing. Because that next step isn't the
same for all documents, they are sorted into different areas, which are all specifically designated
on the desktop. Placement in each area implies a particular "next step" for any document found
in that area.
Within each area , the documents should be kept in SuDoc order. So really,
we are organizing the newly-processed documents in two ways , by SuDoc number and by their
next processing step.
COMPLETE THE SHIPPING LIST AFTER PROCESSING ITS
When you finish processing all the documents we received along with the current SL, look
to see if all the Item numbers you checked off as selected were, in fact, received. If they were.
you total the number of documents received on that SL, by counting the checkmarks to the right
of the Item numbers, for paper; or adding up the numbers written beside the SuDocs, for fiche .
Then write that total between the words "Classification No." and "Title" at the top of the SL.
Write today's month and day on the other side of the word "Title." Be sure you're writing on page
1, and only on page 1.
If you can't stamp, the front/cover of the document because you'd be obscuring text, or
because the SL wouldn't be visible, you can stamp the back cover instead. If that's no good try
the inside first page.
If you can't stamp the front/cover because it's glossy and the stamp won't be permanent
use the Inside first page. If that's glossy, too, date-stamp one of the larger white labels and put' it
on the back of the document. We generally don't want those large white labels on the
document's cover; they're too visually obtrusive.
HOW TO DATE-STAMP MICROFICHE
Date-stamp the envelope holding the individual fiche. If there are multiple fiche in one
document, stamp the first envelope only.
HOW TO DATE-STAMP CD-ROMS AND FLOPPY DISKS
For CD-ROMs, date-stamp a large white label and put it on the back of the "jewel case" or
paper case so it does not obscure the CD-ROM disk. If there is text on the back of the jewel
case, keep it visible with careful placement of the label, or by separating the label into multiple
pieces , or other creative approaches. Consult with your supervisor as needed.
For floppy disks, date-stamp the envelope for 51/2" disks (but not while the floppy is in the
envelope) For 3 1/4" disks, stamp a label, cut out the SL date only, and put it on the floppy (if
the floppy has a holder, use that).
HOW TO DATE-STAMP HARD-COVER DOCUMENTS
Date-stamp in the upper right corner of the right-hand inside page.
HOW TO DATE-STAMP DOCUMENTS WITH MULTIPLE PIECES
Follow procedures for date stamping "documents with multiple pieces;" date-stamp every "piece,"
if you can.
HOW TO DATE-STAMP WHEN THERE'S MINIMAL SPACE AVAILABLE
Sometimes there just isn't sufficient space anywhere on the document to use the full datestamp.
The solution here is to stamp on one of the large white labels and then use the scissors
to cut out as much of the stamp as can be fit onto the document. The bare minimum is the SL
date, which is the crucial information if we need to trace the document. But also try to fit in the
library's name, which marks the document as part of our collection . These two elements can be
cut out and affixed to the document individually.
SORT THE PROCESSED DOCUMENTS
If you are left with a document or other item which is not on
the SL or was not checked off as selected, leave a note for your supervisor.
In any case, don't put the SL in the logged-SL pile; you've got one final thing to check.
SCAN THE SL FOR NEWLY CREATED ITEM NUMBERS AND OTHER
Scan each SL for any messages from GPO. Refer these SLs to supervisor.
PROCESSING SEPARATES (INDIVIDUALLY BOXED) DOCUMENTS
Separates SLs arrive along with the other SLs
in the standard boxes. They should be processed exactly as described above (including use of
the SP List), except that the associated documents will be on the shelves behind the work desk,
grouped by SL number. Retrieve the boxes or envelopes associated with your SL and process
as usual. If all the selected items were received ,the SL is
finished up and put in its proper pile, exactly as are the paper and microfiche SLs.
Processing Separates SLs does differ significantly from other processing jobs in one
important respect: if some of the selected items on a Separates SL are not received , it is not
necessarily a cause for concern . The items may simply not have arrived in the mail. However,
the SL in this circumstance cannot be "finished" and added to the SL pile until the status of the
unreceived items is determined. Generally this involves waiting a while longer and watching for
the arrival of the missing items.
So what do you do with the SL? It's put in the manila "Separates Folder" on the shelf to
the right of the work desk. Don't put an item total or the date on top of any SL going into this
folder, because such an SL is, by definition, not yet finished
MONITORING THE SEPARATES FOLDER
Student assistants are expected to be mindful of the need to monitor the Separates folder
so that we can process the Separates documents which arrived some time after their SL Also
the folder must be monitored for SLs which have sat there waiting for documents which did not'
arrive--we have a limited time period in which to claim unreceived items from the GPO. If there
is an SL in the folder with a date "ne month old or more, bring it to your supervisor's attention
immediately. Also, be sure that any SL in the folder has at least one item checked as selected
but with no item received; there is, sometimes, confusion regarding Separates SLs.
Some documents are superceeded. A good example of this is the Code of Federal Regulations.
Old copies are withdrawn and discarded as new editions arrive. Aside for the CFR, the gov docs
librarian/supervisor will monitor withdrawals.
THE STEPS IN WITHDRAWALS
Count the number of items you are withdrawing and post that number on the list for
Withdrawals on the metal cabinet door. If there's already a number written in for the current
date, just add your number with a plus sign. Withdrawals of microfiche or electronic items
should be noted as such, although students don't generally handle those.
Ordinarily the withdrawn item is discarded (in the recycling can) .
"MISSING DOCUMENT" PROCEDURES
It is always disconcerting to have checked off an Item number and not have found the
document associated with it. The following procedures are intended to help you determine if, in
fact, we have failed to receive a selected item; and if so, what you should do about it.
Experienced students may need only to review this list.
1. Confirm that we select the Item number.
2. Make sure this isn't a Separates SL.
3. See if the missing item is a Raincheck.
4. See if there's a message on the SL pertaining to the missing item.
5. If you haven't processed the entire box, set the unresolved SL nearby and finish up the
box, watching for the missing item as you work. Do not prepare a claim until you have
finished the box.
6. If you do finish the box and the document has not appeared, follow the procedures for a
MAKE SURE IT ISN'T A SEPARATES SL
If you didn't find any documents for the SL, see if it has a "-S" after the SL number (i.e .,
2011-055-S) . If It does, that means that the items we selected from this SL are being mailed
individually, In smaller boxes such as the ones (probably) on the shelves behind you and beside
you. We call these "Separates."
The Separates boxes should have SL numbers, in addition to the date of arrival, on their
sides or tops. Look for boxeswhich match the number of your current SL, and if you find some,
go ahead and process them as you would any other documents. If you do not find any boxes
with your SL's number, or if you do not find all the items we selected on that SL, put the
uncompleted SL in the manila folder marked "Separates Shipping Lists" on the shelf to your
right. Don't put a date or a total on top of a Separates SL for which we're expecting documents,
because the SL hasn't been fully processed yet. (A Separates SL with no Item numbers selected
is handled exactly the same way as any other SL with no Item numbers selected, described in
IS THE ITEM /I RAINCHECK?
Look to see if there's a printed symbol to the left of the Item number and if there is, check
it against the"Explanation of Symbols" at the bottom of the SL.
If the Item number has an "+" sign beside it, the item is a Raincheck; we are supposed to
receive it along with some future shipment. Write "raincheck" to the right of the Item number. If
we have also received a form identifying that item as a raincheck, file the form in the Visi-File
box labeled for "Rainchecks in SuDoc Order" on the shelf to your right, beside the SL logbooks.
Don't include the raincheck item in totaling the items received.
WHAT TO DO IF WE DIDN'T GET A FORM FOR THE RAINCHECK
If the item has a "+" sign, indicating raincheck status, but we did not receive a raincheck
form, we need to claim that item. In addition to writing "raincheck" to the right of the Item
number, also write "no raincheck form received" and follow the directions in "Claim Procedures"
MISSING DOCUMENTS WHICH HAVE SPECIAL MESSAGES ON THE SL
The next thing to check for is a message on the SL pertaining to this document; it may be
written under the title, or at the end of the SL. In rare instances, the missing document might be
mailed as a Separate (necessitating a special message, since Separates usually have their own
SLs). There might be other, unpredictable situations. In any such case, show the SL to your
supervisor or leave it for her, with a signed, dated post-it indicating that there's a message.
WHAT TO DO IF NONE OF THE ABOVE APPLY, BUT YOU HAVEN'T
PROCESSED THE WHOLE BOX
Once you've confirmed that the Item number is correct, that the SL isn't for Separates, and
that the item does not have Raincheck status, we will need to claim that item--unless it turns up
elsewhere in the box. Set the SL aside and watch for the missing item(s) as you continue
processing . Missing documents do turn up further down sometimes, especially smaller
documents and microfiche, and you don't want to go through the claim process until you're sure
the item wasn't sent.
YOU CAN'T CLAIM A DOCUMENT WITH A "%" NEXT TO THE ITEM
If the Item number has a "%" sign beside it, we are being told not to claim the item ,
because there are no copies to send to claimants. In this case, circle the item
numberlSuDoc/title for the missing document (our standard indicator of a claim) and write "not
WHAT TO DO IF A BOX. HAS A LOT OF CLAIMS
If you find an unusually high number of claims in a particular box, particularly when they
turn up in all or most of the SLs, something has gone drastically wrong . This is particularly
probable if we have also received an unusual number of "mystery" documents, i.e., items which
we apparently don 't select. But heavy claims, in and of themselves, should arouse suspicion.
The first thing to do is to check the depository number written inside the box top If it is
anythingother than "0371," we have received a box intended for another depository. Obviously,
in this case you would want to retrieve all the documents and SLs which came in that box, put
them back into it, and notify your supervisor ASAP.
If the depository number confirms that the box is ours, you should still alert your supervisor
to your observations. There could be a malfunction in the automated process which loads these
boxes--it has happened! Special actions, such as a call to Washington.
1. Circle the Item number, SuDoc number, and title of the claimable item, carefully and
distinctly. If you are claiming more than one document and they are next to one another on the
SL, you may draw a single large circle around both/all--you can circle the listings for an entire
page this way, if necessary. If you are claiming a single fiche, or several fiche, from a multifiche
document, write "Fiche # Only" near the claim.
2. When you write the total of items received at the top of the SL, add a plus sign to the
number. Don't put a number after the plus; the numbers on the top of an SL indicate items
received, not items missing. The purpose of the plus sign is to alert the person logging the
SL that it includes one or more claims, which must be entered in the log book.
3. The gov docs supervisor or librarian will claim the items circled on SLs.
4. When claimed items are received, find the original SL, update that list to reflect the claimed
item(s) received and process documents as usual.
WHAT TO DO WITH DUPLICATE ITEMS
If the item is definitely a duplicate of something else we received in the same shipment,
mark it with its SuDoc anyway, to facilitate its eventual offering to other libraries. Then leave it
for your supervisor, with a post-it indicating its status as a duplicate.
WHAT ARE DIRECT MAIL DOCUMENTS, AND WHERE ARE THEY KEPT?
These are the federal documents which arrive in the mailbox without a shipping list or a
shipping list number on the label. From the mailroom, they go to the brown cardboard box in the
Docs Office, labeled "Direct Mail Box" (logically enough). Currently, the Drew depository
receives few items via direct mail (Federal Register;LSA; Library of Congress Information Bulletin; State).
ADDING THE DATE STAMP AND SUDOC
Process the documents. Just as with other documents, they will need a Drew University
date stamp and a SuDoc number. But because they are not linked to a shipping list, we don't
use the stamp set up for a shipping list date. There's a separate stamp, kept below the Direct
Mail box, which you'll use for processing these items. Set it with the date you are processing the
To identify the SuDocs for Direct Mail items, work with the "Periodical Titles" drawer in the
Documents Card Catalog. Process like any other document; Enter the documents the on the appropriate
shelf list card.
MAKING AND RECORDING THE COUNT OF DOCUMENTS
Count the documents. Then enter the number on the "U .S. Documents Direct Mail" sheet
in the office, on the metal cabinet door. These numbers are included in our monthly processing
LOGGING SHIPPING LISTS
We keep a record of processed Shipping Lists , so that we know whether they have
arrived , when they were processed, how many items were received, and the progress of any
claim which was entered from them . This record is maintained In two logbooks. one for paper,
separates, and electronics lists; and one for microfiche lists.
Once the SLs have been recorded in the appropriate logs, they are put in a blue folder
labeled "Daily Depository Shipping Lists," ordered by number and format. They remain there
until the Documents ASSistant removes them on the first working day of each month as part of
the statistics-keeping of this office.
WHEN TO LOG SLs
Regularly, check the status of the pile of SLs on the desk. Before it approaches a
prohibitive height, take time to do some SL logging. You will develop a keener sense of how
high is too high once you've done the job a few times. Before you start processing documents,
you should always look at the SL pile and decide if logging is in order.
SORTING SLs FOR LOGGING
Sort the pile of SLs by format type and SL number. Begin by noting the format of the SL
on top of the pile. SLs for paper format have a -P after the SL number; microfiche have -M;
electronic have -E, Separates have -S. Put the top SL in an area you've designated for that
format type . Continue, keeping the highest SL number on the top of each pile . Be sure you
keep all pages of the SL together.
HOW AND WHEN TO ADD PAGES TO LOG BOOKS
Check the page status of the appropriate log books--that is, determine if the top page in
the appropriate log book section ends with an SL number equal to, or higher than, the highest
SL number you need to enter. If it doesn't, you'll need to fill out additional page(s). There should
be blank page forms in the front of the log book. If there is only one page form left, don't use it-take
it to the mailroom and run off more copies.
On the formes) that you use, be sure to check off the format (or write in "E") at the top.
When you continue the numbering sequence at the top of your new page, be sure you write the
full SL number, including the year, for your first entry. For following entries on that page, you can
leave out the year. (Look at previous pages if you're not sure about this.) Be sure to write the
numbers close to the right margin of the column , so that they'll be easily visible in the book.
Once the numbers for the whole page have been entered , open the clamp and add the page(s)
to the log.
Use your judgement in deciding how many pages to add to the log. Particularly with
microfiche SLs, there can be substantial gaps between the numbers of the SLs you want to log
and the last number currently written in the log book. It isn't an efficient use of your time to fill
out four pages of numbers so that you can log three SLs. (And skipping ahead in the page
sequence can't be done.) If you find yourself in this situation, it's better to return the high numbered
SLs to the corner pile; eventually the numbers in the log book will catch up with them.
Log the SLs, one format pile at a time. Enter in the appropriate columns the total number
of pieces processed and the date the SL was processed; the two things that shoUld be written at
the top of the SL. After you've entered an SL in the log, turn it upside down in a spot you've
designated on the desk. Continue in this way through the pile, until all the SLs have been
logged and are still in order with the highest number on top (once the pile's been turned rightside
ENTERING CLAIM INFORMATION
If there is a plus sign after the total on any particular SL, it means that we entered
claims for some of the items listed. You have to add that information to the log entry for
that SL. Write in the Item number(s) being claimed, and today's date as the date the claim
was made (which should be reasonably correct). All of these entry areas are indicated at
the top of the columns.
WHY OUR "CARD CATALOG" IS REALLY A SHELF LIST. AND WHY IT'S
The "shelf list" is the correct name for what most of us would call the "card catalog" in
Documents Reference. Technically it's not a card catalog because it doesn't contain the classic
author-title-subject cards for each item. Each item is recorded on only one card, which is filed by
SuDoc number; so that the catalog 's contents generally correspond to the arrangement of our
stacks , or "shelves." The catalog is, accordingly, a "shelf list'' Most of us will call it a card
catalog anyway, which is all right, but it never hurts to know the precise terminology.
The condition of the card catalog is important for many reasons . One which every
Documents employee ought to know: it's our only listing of Drew's entire Documents collection .
Documents catalog records are limited to items processed since January 1990.
Items that are still entered on shelf list cards are diminishing. Only items that come through Direct
Mail are entered on shelf list cards (Federal Register; LSA; Library of Congress Information Bulletin; State).
Updated 2011. See the attachment for original version.