Cataloguing and Classification


This online library course introduces the principles and practice of library cataloguing and classification.

Cataloguing and classification are core processes in information storage and retrieval.

Knowledge of the major standards used for the format and content of catalogue records, and the ability to apply those standards appropriately, are valuable skills for those working in libraries and other information centres.

This online course introduces you to the principles and practice of library cataloguing and classification. It is designed to enable you to apply international and local standards (RDA: Resource Description and Access, Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC), Library of Congress Subject headings (LCSH), and Ngā Upoko Tukutuku Māori Subject Headings) in the creation of catalogue records.

It draws on the principles of classification and categorisation (taxonomy) to explain how classification schemes are developed and used in different contexts, for different groups of users, and for different kinds of information resources.

Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:

  • Analyse and appropriately apply RDA and associated guidelines developed by National Library of New Zealand in the creation of catalogue records.
  • Identify and apply  MARC tags and codes to catalogue records.
  • Analyse and appropriately apply DDC and LCSH to provide subject access to a range of information resources.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of different approaches to subject access in different contexts, for different user groups and for different kinds of information resource.


  • 100% internally assessed.


No textbooks are required for this course, however you will have access to the RDT Toolkit via a subscription linked through the Open Polytechnic Library.

Computer and internet requirements

To complete this course you will need access to a laptop or desktop computer, reliable broadband internet connection and a data plan able to support online learning such as streaming of videos (including YouTube), downloading content, and writing and submitting online assessments. If you are unsure if your current computer or internet access allows you to complete your online learning with us, please contact us before applying to enrol.

How to enrol

Before enrolling in this course you need to:

  • choose the qualification you will study the course under
  • check the order that courses in the qualification should be studied in the Qualification Structure table. This is in the Choose courses and apply tab on the qualification page.

Work towards

You can do this course as part of these qualifications:

Certificate of Proficiency
Bachelor's Degree
Graduate Diploma

Course availability over the next 12 months