RDA Webinar Series (Part Four): Describing a Person Using Official RDA

This fourth and final session of the New and Official RDA Toolkit webinar series goes over how to properly describe a person with Official RDA.

The four-part webinar series covers the basics of the official Resource Description and Access (RDA) Toolkit that one should know before using the standard and presents how to use the RDA Toolkit with other cataloging documentation, including policy statements and Metadata Guidance Documents (MGDs). Specific examples and detailed steps will be demonstrated in the presentations to help users understand not only the content structure of RDA in a comprehensive way but also ways to use the Toolkit with the assistance of cataloging documentation.

Learning Outcomes: 

By the end of this webinar, attendees will:

  • Learn to create a description of a person based on the Official RDA
  • Learn to record relationship of the person to a description of a work/expression by using Official RDA

Who Should Attend: Catalogers, metadata librarians, and anyone interested in RDA.


Robert L. Maxwell is a senior librarian at the Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, where he is a cataloger and curator for classical languages and Special Collections, and is authorities librarian for genre/form terms.

He is the winner of ALA’s ABC-CLIO 2014 Award for Best Book in Library Literature and the ALCTS 2015 Outstanding Publication Award for Maxwell’s Handbook for RDA (2013). He also won the 2002 ALA Highsmith Library Literature Award for Maxwell’s Guide to Authority Work (2002). He is also the author of FRBR: A Guide for the Perplexed (2008).

He has taught cataloging at the University of Arizona School of Information Resources and Library Science and at Brigham Young University, and has chaired the Bibliographic Standards Committee of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Section of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL). He is one of the two ALA representatives to NARDAC and is the North American regional representative to the RDA Steering Committee (RSC) and has also been a member of ALA’s Committee on Cataloging: Description and Access (CC:DA), and ALA’s Subject Analysis Committee, the ALA bodies charged with formulating ALA positions on cataloging rules and policies, including RDA. In addition to an M.L.S. from the University of Arizona, he holds a J.D. from Brigham Young University and a Ph.D. in classical languages and literatures from the University of Toronto.

Tech Requirements

Core Webinars are held in Zoom. Speakers or a headset for listening to the presentation are required. You may interact with the presenter and ask questions through text-based chat. Closed captioning is available in the Zoom platform. The webcast will be recorded and the link to the recording shared with registrants shortly after the live event.


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If you have a question or need to make arrangements for special assistance or additional accessibility, please contact Mia Blixt-Shehan (mblixtshehan@ala.org).