Top Level Categories

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Our first priority is to set the top level categories for the Open Shelves Classification.

Many ideas have been discussed in the thread on this topic, now lets begin to settle on an initial list, we can begin testing it out on LT books and making edits.

After the top level is set, we can begin to figure out notation and call number issues.

Areas of General Consensus So Far

  • More top level categories is better than fewer.
  • The levels should be focused on the needs of public libraries.

Top Levels Working List

Below is the revised list of top levels. Remember at this point, we are not worrying about what the exact label will be or what order they will be in. See the facets section for ideas on how to handle local decisions on audience, language, and format.

Use of Facets and Top Level Categories

Agriculture: Includes works on farming, animal husbandry, growing crops, soil, agro-business.

Anthropology& Sociology: [combined]: Includes works written from a sociological viewpoint. Use FAMILY & RELATIONSHIPS for works written to help people deal with issues involving child rearing or relationships.

Antiques & Collectibles: Includes works about collecting the specific objects and/or for works on the history of these objects if they are not covered in other sections (such as ART). Place works discussing the techniques used to make the objects listed in this category elsewhere (such as CRAFTS & HOBBIES).

Architecture: Includes historical works and/or for works aimed at architects or design professionals. For similar works aimed at nonprofessionals, use HOUSE & HOME. Place works concerning the technical or trade aspects of construction, in "TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING". Place works in “ARCHITECTURE” that discuss the architectural design of an interior space and place in “DESIGN” works that discuss the placement/arrangement of objects within an interior space.

Art: Includes works on ART history and/or technique, fine arts (drawing, painting, print making, sculpture), digital art, installations, and photography. Also includes books about artists and their works, but not autobiographies of artists. Place autobiographies of artists under BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY. Place works about collecting art or art objects under ANTIQUES & COLLECTIBLES. Place works discussing technique from a craft viewpoint under CRAFTS & HOBBIES. "ART -- History" may be used for works on the history of Western or non-Western art.

Biography & Autobiography: Includes memoirs, diaries, and other correspondence. AUTOBIOGRAPHY is a biography by the same person it is about.

Business: Includes business development, marketing, and management, and also works about specific industries (for example, Automobile, Energy, Manufacturing, etc.).

Career: Includes guides to succeeding in particular careers, career building, etc.

Computers: Includes computer science, how to guides for hardware and software, networking and IT. Place books on computer games under SPORTS & RECREATION.

Crafts & Hobbies: Includes works discussing objects/materials/technique from a craft (as opposed to fine art) viewpoint. Place books on non-professional fine art and photography under ART.

Design: Includes commercial design, fashion, packaging, and product design. Also includes works on general principles of design that can be applied to various disciplines (such as art, architecture, crafts, and technology) and for works on design.

Economics: Includes works on the production, distribution and consumption of goods and services from an economic theory perspective.

Education: Includes works that study the history and practice of education. Place books on how to succeed in a particular career under CAREERS.

Family & Relationships: Includes parenthood, sexuality, raising children.

Fiction: Includes literature, drama (plays), anthologies, and genre works (such as mystery, romance, science fiction, westerns). Place literary criticism under LITERARY CRITICISM. Place poetry under POETRY.

Film & Television: Includes works about motion pictures and television programs, the film and television industries, screenplays. Place novelizations of motion pictures or television programs under FICTION.

Food & Drink: Includes cookbooks.

Gardening: Includes works on the growing of fruits, vegetables, flowers, and herbs. Place farming under AGRICULTURE. Place scientific works about plants under SCIENCE.

General Knowledge: Includes works on libraries and archives. Also includes works of general knowledge such as encyclopedia, almanacs, or dictionaries. Encyclopedia, almanacs, or dictionaries on a specific topic should be placed with that topic.

Health & Fitness: Includes works on meditation, mental health, nutrition, physical fitness, yoga. Place books about medicine under SCIENCE.

History: Includes works on the history of specific regions (e.g. Africa, Ancient Greece), events (e.g. Holocaust), and topics (e.g. Military History or Study & Teaching of History). Please note that History does not mean "anything that happened in the past".

House & Home: Includes books on decoration, home improvement, interior design. For books about gardening use GARDENING.

Humor: Includes works of satire, books of jokes, books written by comedians, limericks & verse. Also includes humorous books on specific topics, such as relationships, work, and politics.

Languages & Linguistics: Includes general works on language, the English language in particular, and works on disciplines closely related to language arts. Includes language dictionaries. Place non-language dictionaries under their appropriate topic.

Law Includes works that focus on the system of rules governing society, such as Antitrust, Civil Rights, Government, etc.

Literary Criticism: Includes works on the the study, discussion, evaluation, and interpretation of literature.

Mathematics: Includes works on Mathematics, such as Trigonometry, Probability & Statistics, Vector Analysis, and Logic.

Paranormal & Occult: Included works on paranormal activities, the occult, past lives, and other realms outside traditional science.

Music: Includes works about music, composers, musicians, sheet music, and scores. CDs and other formats will be represented by an optional format tag.

Performing Arts: Includes acting, circus, dance, mime, puppetry, and theatre. Plays are considered drama and are placed under FICTION.

Pets: Includes books on pet care and adoption. Place books on animals in a non-pet context under SCIENCE or AGRICULTURE as appropriate. Place children’s books with talking animal characters under FICTION.

Philosophy: Includes works on existence, knowledge, truth, beauty, justice, validity, mind, and language. Includes metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, logic, and aesthetics.

Politics & Government: Includes works on government, international relations, political science, and punditry.

Poetry: Includes collections of poems, as well as individual poems and epics.

Psychology: Includes scholarly works, serious lay studies, or works aimed at psychology professionals. Works primarily intended to help people deal with personal issues or problems go in FAMILY & RELATIONSHIPS or SELF-HELP sections.

Religion: Includes works on religious texts (e.g., Bible, Talmud), religions, religious ethics and mythology.

Science: Includes works of natural science including astronomy, biology, chemistry, Earth science, and physics.

Self-Help: Includes works on self-guided improvement (economically, intellectually, or emotionally).

Sports & Recreation: Includes games.

Technology & Engineering: Includes works on Transportation, Construction, Civil Engineering, Drafting & Mechanical Drawing, Electrical, Mobile & Wireless Communications, Mining, Robotics and Machinery.

Travel & Geography: Includes travel guides, maps and atlases.

True Crime: Includes works that are non-fiction in which the author details and illuminates actual crime (e.g., Espionage, Organized Crime).

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