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Like most libraries, law libraries are anxious to install integrated library systems that, in addition to other functions, will provide effective online serials control. For some, these systems are a reality, for others, their installation is in various stages of planning. For most, however, they are merely something to read, hear and day-dream about. In small and medium size libraries, the daily struggle of maintaining control over growing serials collections will be left to manual systems for some time to come.

The information in this paper is intended to suggest ways that may ease the frustration of a manual system. Even for libraries that plan an automated system within the near future, redesigning the current manual system provides an opportunity to do some advance planning, to gather information and to clean up problems before going online. Although this document does not deal with online systems, libraries about to install one might find this helpful in their evaluation of the data elements to be included in their check-in records. Generally, the principles and suggestions here have been tried and proven to create a comprehensive and efficient check-in system.

This material was originally presented by Penny Hazelton at the 1979 AALL serials workshop, and revised by Dennis Benamati for presentation at the 1986 AALL program "We Are Our Own Best Resource: A Dialogue with the Experts."

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American Association of Law Libraries




Law Librarianship

Designing and Maintaining Serials Check-in Systems: Even If You Plan to Automate

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