On-Demand Webinar: Dropping the Other I-Word: Local Library of Congress Subject Heading Replacements

This webinar will highlight the Western North Carolina Library Network (WNCLN)’s project to locally replace unethical or problematic subject headings in our shared catalog. The discussion is grounded in our network’s experiences with replacing subject headings relating to several topics with a focus on methods for garnering community input on Indigenous representation in the catalog. The presentation consists of three sections: (1) Information about the justification for implementing local Library of Congress Subject Heading (LCSH) replacements, (2) considerations and recommended strategies for setting priorities and getting started with local LCSH replacements, and (3) a technical overview of a local subject heading replacement workflow.

Learning Outcomes: 

At the end of the webinar, attendees will be able to:

  • Advocate for the implementation of local subject replacements as an essential practice for building more inclusive catalogs;
  • Prioritize problematic subject headings for replacement in their local context;
  • Identify appropriate local replacements using professional resources and ethical strategies to solicit community input for authentically representative subject terms; and
  • Adapt a technical procedure to their system for local subject authority record replacement and maintenance.

Who Should Attend: Cataloging and metadata professionals, library managers, and systems and network librarians.


Rebecca Saunders (she/her) is the Cataloging and Metadata Librarian at Western Carolina University’s Hunter Library. She attained her MLIS degree at the University of South Carolina in 2019. Her primary research interest is in examining and rectifying how systems of oppression are codified in library catalogs through the practice of critical cataloging. Her co-written article detailing a workflow for local subject heading replacements in a shared network catalog, “Let’s Get Technical – Network-Level Replacements of Problematic Library of Congress Subject Headings in Sierra,” was published in the September 2022 issue of Against the Grain. In February 2023, she presented on local subject replacement workflows with a focus on Indigenous representation in library catalogs at the Amigos Library Services Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in Cataloging & Technical Services conference.

Tech Requirements

Core Webinars are held in Zoom. Speakers or a headset for listening to the presentation are required. Closed captioning is available in the Zoom platform.