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Add open access content

Add open access knowledge base collections within Collection Manager. The instructions include additional options for WorldShare Management Services and WorldCat Local libraries.

Depending on your library's subscriptions, choose one of the options below to add open access content to get records and/or links to open access titles. There is little risk to enabling open access content. You can easily disable the features if you do not like the results.

Note: See the collections available in the WorldCat knowledge base (.xlsx) for a current list of open access collections in Collection Manager. Filter the Open Access column for Yes. Columns such as the following are also included: Total Records Available, Percentage of OCLC Number Coverage, Customizable (Yes/No).

For information on how to get a sample file of records, see Can I get a sample file of the records?

Option 1: Select open access knowledge base collections

You can search for and select open access knowledge base collections in Collection Manager.

Tips about open access collections and settings:

  • It is not necessary to configure every setting as the system defaults are set to what most libraries prefer
  • Settings for maintaining holdings in WorldCat are disabled by default for open access collections even if your institution setting is enabled
  • Institution and collection-level proxy settings are not needed for open access collections

To search for open access collections:

  1. Sign in to the WorldShare interface. Navigate to the Metadata > Collection Manager.
  2. Make sure My Selected Collections is unchecked and click the search button. This will display a list of all available collections in the global WorldCat knowledge base.
  3. Filter search results for open access collections by checking the box for Contains Open Access Content.

To select open access collections and titles:

  1. Click Select to select a collection in full. Alternatively, click on a collection's title to open the collection. Select titles in the collection. Note that a collection must be "Customizable" for title-by-title selection.
  2. You might need to change the proxy setting within the collection-level settings to "No proxy needed." To change it, open the collection and expand the Linking accordion. See the Use Proxy setting.
  3. See the sections below to Configure settings for MARC records delivery or to Enable full-text links for WorldCat Discovery.

Configure settings for MARC record delivery

If you want MARC records to be delivered for titles in your collection, follow the instructions to Get WorldCat MARC records for knowledge base collections.

Enable full-text links for WorldCat Discovery

For WorldShare Management Services libraries and WorldCat Local/Discovery libraries.

You must enable settings in OCLC Service Configuration in order for links from knowledge base collections to appear in your Discovery interface. If you set WorldCat holdings on your open-access collections, they will appear as held by your library and appear higher in the results set in your WorldCat Discovery interface. See Display full-text links and elevate links from a specific provider for more information.

To enable full-text links:

  1. Sign in to OCLC Service Configuration.
  2. Navigate to the My WorldCat.org > Full Text and Open Access Links.
  3. Check Links from the WorldCat knowledge base to full text content under Detailed Record.
    Note: This will automatically select the settings for links to appear on the detailed record and on the brief record on the search results page. If for some reason you do not want links in search results, adjust the Search Results setting.

Option 2: Display links from master record 856 and 956 fields to open access content

For WorldShare Management Services libraries and WorldCat Local/Discovery libraries.

WorldShare Management Services libraries and WorldCat Local/Discovery libraries have the option to enable the display of links from 856 and 956 fields to open access content. Once these are enabled for display, they will show up in the detailed record results of your discovery interface.

Note: Use this method of enabling open access links via displaying 856 and 956 links with caution. Many but not all links are truly open access. OCLC has no way to weed out those that are not open access. For example, if Cornell did original cataloging in WorldCat and included an 856 link that ends in cornell.edu, the link will surface as open access even though the resource is not actually available to those without authentication for Cornell. Moreover, not all links are guaranteed to be current. It is possible that some links will not resolve, turning up a 404-error message.

To display links from 856 and 956 fields:

  1. Sign in to OCLC Service Configuration.
  2. Navigate to the My WorldCat.org > Full Text and Open Access Links.
  3. Towards the bottom of the Search Results page - display the following links section, check the box Links from Master WorldCat record 856 and 956 to open access content/free content.
  4. Uncheck the boxes beside any link sources that you do not wish to display.

In the Full Text and Open Access Links section, you'll notice there are various options for setting up links from master WorldCat records. Check these boxes as needed. Notice that links manage by the setting Links from the Master WorldCat record Non-open access content/free content might require payment to access content.

If you wish to suppress these links, uncheck the box beside this option.

Option 3: Enable all open access knowledge base links

Note: This method is not recommended for most libraries. 

For greater control and granular maintenance of open access content, we recommend that you select open access collections individually rather than enable links for all open access collections.

To enable links for all open access collections:

  1. Sign in to the WorldShare interface, navigate to the Metadata tab > Collection Manager.
  2. Click Settings and expand Proxy and Authentication > Open Access in Resolver.
  3. Check the boxes for the open access content you want to display.

WorldShare Management Services libraries and WorldCat Local/Discovery libraries: Enabling all links for access at the institution level will not set holdings in WorldCat for these items. Thus, the titles will not display as held by your library. The items will appear as held by libraries worldwide. If you want to set holdings in WorldCat, select individual access collections and use the collection-level setting.

For more information on Collection Manager institution settings.