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    Understanding Normalized Call Numbers in Analytics

    Created By: Simon Hunt
    Created on: 2/01/2019








    Normalized call numbers.

    In Analytics, the "normalized call number" column in the Holdings Details folder is a handy tool for correctly sorting a call number list (see here). It can also be useful if you want to get a report of everything in a call number range - such as QA24-QA27. Alma treats the "permanent LC classification top line" as a decimal, so M3 is "greater than" M245. Also, if your library uses call number prefixes (852 $k in the holdings record), they will appear at the beginning of the "permanent LC call number."

    The following guide describes how to assemble a normalized call number, specifically a Library of Congress call number in the MARC 21 standard.

    Each row describes consecutive character(s) in the string. All letters are lower case.

    • 852 Indicator 1 (0 for LC call numbers)
    • LC classification code
    • Normalizing character (see table below)
    • LC class number
    • [space]
    • Cutter without preceding period
    • [space]
    • Title code
    • [space]
    • Date
    • [space]
    • Call number prefix
    • [space]
    • 0 (only if the string will end in a letter*)

    *If the normalized call number will end in a letter (either a date like 1900z or a call number prefix), a [space] and 0 are added at the end.

    Digits in class number

    Normalizing character








    Example call number: Folio QA24.D56 T72 1958

    Normalized: 0qa!24 d56 t72 1958 folio 0

    This can be useful in querying specific ranges by using the "is between" operator in a filter. For example, to find all titles in the range PC5401-PC5499, you would use the following: