Home Management Technical Processing in Library

Technical Processing in Library

Technical Processing in Library


Technical Processing is an important part when the document is received by the Librarian. Every Document has to go through technical processing, without that a document can’t be disseminated. A document may be Book, Journal, Manuscript, CD, DVD collection, etc. The good collections of documents are necessary for providing better library service. The collection is built up by the coordination of librarians and users.

The Technical Processing department performs some tasks like physical processing, classification, cataloging, etc that facilitate the use of the document collection. The Technical Processing Section is the Back Bone of the Library. It works in the background so users are not aware of what things are mandatory before it is being issued to users.

Read Related Article – Technical Library Services

Technical Processing of Library Materials

Different names are given to the Technical Department such as Cataloguing Section, Classification Section, Physical Processing, etc. The Technical Processing Department facilitates the use of documents in the Library. This Is a vital part of the Library. The documents are being made ready for dissemination. The Documents go through the following procedures.

Physical Processing Work

Physical Processing Work

The Documents are ordered after the recommendation by users. The Librarian verifies it and then selects the documents for acquisition. Then the book is procured and received by the Librarian. The documents are verified with the order list. Then the documents are sent in the technical section for physical processing. The following work is done in Physical processing.


Most often the book’s pages are joined together or not cut properly. If these are left unnoticed users will open the page by inserting the fingers or pen and ultimately the page is damaged. To prevent this, the whole book is checked and any uncut edges are properly cut. This cutting work should be done with proper instruments like knives or scissors.


Newly acquired books from the vendors may not open well, as it is hard at the spine. This needs easing to make it flexible. This is done by opening the document somewhere in the middle and placing it on the table and pressing it from the top. This can be done slowly and repeatedly.


The Library Stamping is a vital part of Technical Processing. It is generally done on Title Page and last Page. Then another place where stamping is done is Secret Page. It may differ from one organization to another. Stamping should be done properly, as sometimes the text is upside down. The alignment is disturbed. Stamping should not be done on the reading matter.

Book Pocket Fixing

The Book Pocket fixing is an important work done in the Technical Processing Department. It is put inside the first cover page. The pocket should be checked as there should not be any obstruction while putting Book Card.

Date Label Fixing

The Date Label may be put on the title page. The date stamping is done on this page for users must know when the book was issued.


The Book Tag is put on the spine of the document. It is put at the bottom of the spine. These days barcode sticker comes of standard size is pasted there. If the barcode is not available then the tag measuring one inch is stuck after writing the Accession number and Call Number. If the book is thin and less than one inch, then it is put at the bottom of the front cover page.

Classification Work

Classification Work

Library Classification means translation of Title into Notation. This will convert the title into a number. It is done with the help of the Classification Scheme. It provides a number of different subjects and their topics. The Index is there to help the Classifier. It is an important part of technical Processing.

Preliminary sorting

When documents received after physical processing, then the Classifier checks the books. It is checked whether the books are fiction or Non-Fiction. It is sorted on that basis. Then the Language of the book is checked and sorted on that basis. The purpose is to distribute the books and the specialist will take care of further processing.

Checking with the catalogue

The Classifier then checks the catalog. He will know that the document is a copy of already processed items, whether it is a new volume or part of a multivolume set of already processed items. If it is already processed then no processing work is done, the same previous call number is allotted. If the Document is new then only a new class number is allotted.

Determining the specific Subject

The classifier’s first task is to decide the specific subject of the document. Lots of documents, Titles are misleading and so the classifier has to go through the preface, table of content, and even chapters. Sometimes it is a difficult task to ascertain the specific subject. Sometimes two or three subjects are combined and so to determine one specific subject is really hard to do.

Assigning the Class Number

After determining the specific subject, the classifier assigns Call Number, with the help of Classification Schemes. A Classifier sometimes takes help from new bibliographies, when topics are not available in the classification scheme.

Writing the Call Number

The Call Number provided to the document should be written at four places i.e. Title Page, on the Date Label, On the Book Card, and on the Spine of the Book Tag.

Cataloguing Work

Cataloging Work

Cataloging is an important task performed in the Technical Processing Section. The catalog provides the location of the document. The Catalogue should be made, keeping in mind the different approaches of users, to retrieve the documents. The following procedure should be taken care of while doing cataloging are :

Assigning Subject Headings

Subject Headings are to be assigned as these are required for specific subject entries. It is a necessary element and essential quality of good cataloging.

Main Entry

The Main Entry Catalogue contains bibliographical information of the documents. The following information is mandatory in the catalog are Call Number, Accession Number, Author, Title, Edition, Year and place of Publishing, Pagination, ISBN, Series, Tracing, etc. The main entry can be handwritten or typed also.

Added Entries

The Added Entries vary according to the document. The Cataloguer will decide about it. It is indicated in the main entry.  It may be subject entry, Title Entry, Author Entry, etc.

Book Card

The Book Card is also made in the Technical Processing Section. It is already a printed card where you have to write Author, Title, Volume, and Year. In that card, the Date of Issue, The Borrower Name and Signature is mentioned, and the third column is to write Returning date.

The Cataloguer writes Book Card for each document and puts it in the Book Pocket. Book Card is retained after issuing the book. It is arranged according to the ascending order of Accession Number in a tray. When the book is returned, The Librarian searches the card and after writing the return date, puts it in the book pocket.


The Work is connected with each section of the technical Processing Department. The Head of the technical department supervises the progress of work. He checks after the completion of processing work. The Documents are released and put in the display section of New Arrival. Users get to know about new documents.

Thus the Technical Processing Section of the Library plays an important role after the acquisition of books. They make it ready for dissemination to users. Some Users are in urgent need of particular documents and so technical processing is done in quick time keeping in mind the user’s requirements.

Read Related Article – How Library provides Community Information Services


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here