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RDS@UF: MarcEdit Cataloging

Resource Description Services department procedures and policies

Updated July 2022 by Dave Van Kleeck


MarcEdit Cataloging

MarcEdit is a free tool that can be downloaded at:

You can find tutorials on using MarcEdit at:



SPOT CHECK spread sheet – editing your metadata as much as possible

                Indicators/Initial articles/Main Entries (they will contribute to grouping batches together)

                Subfield and ending punctuation

                Spacing – no unwanted spaces at the beginning of element (cell) or the beginning of a subfield

                Use Find/replace if needed

                Cells without data from the records should be blank

Keep columns in the order you want the MARC fields in the record (i.e., placing 250 between 245 and 264; the 5xx fields in the order that you want them or are prescribed.)

Consider dividing entries into smaller manageable batches (by creating new sheets in the spreadsheet) by grouping similar entries together by language groups, or place of publication (especially by country; or in the case of states for USA, provinces for Canada, and divisions for the UK), or title or author main entries, or publication dates. This will make for manageable batches for easier editing as a group.

OPEN MarcEdit (latest version 7.5)

                If Update message appears ignore it by clicking on “Cancel” box.

MarcEdit’s default version is set at 32-bit for MS Office – On the menu choose Tools, then Preferences, then Other to confirm or change to 64-bit version.

On your MarcEdit menu screen click on “Delimited Text Translator” icon.

Click on folder icon next to “Source File” box to browse to the location (drive/folder) of your spreadsheet.

Choose the file you want by double-clicking, it will appear in box.

Click on folder icon next to “Output File” box to browse to location where you want the output file to be saved (preferably same folder as your spreadsheet for keeping track).

Name the output file anything you choose including the same (or similar) name as your Excel spreadsheet but give it an “.mrk” extension. (i.e., SampleMaptitles.mrk)

“Excel Sheet Name” box -- To place the sheet name on the box, right-click on the sheet name in your (source file) spreadsheet. In menu that appears, click on Rename (the sheet name will then be highlighted). Copy the sheet name and paste it into the box. 

Click on “Edit LDR/008” link (highlighted in blue) and a dialog box appears. In box to the right of “LDR,” click on drop-down arrow. Click on “Book” for monographs (but if working with titles in other formats, you may choose “Serial” or “Cartographic Resource,” etc.)

                For books, in the box below, you will replace the default settings contents with: 00000nam\a2200000Ki\4500     (pre-arranged codes for the specific book project)

In the 008 box, replace the existing text with:    s{264$c}\\\\cu\\\\\\o\\\\\000\0\spa\d

                (The “{264$c}” indicates to MarcEdit to retrieve the publication date from the subfield c [ $c ] in the 264 marc field in the bibliographic record. Use {260$c} if the publication dates are with a 260 field instead of 264. Note: the letter “o” in the middle of the 008 box designates electronic record, a backslash “\” must replace the “o” for print titles.)

Check the box next to “UTF-8 Encoded.” And click on “Next

In the “Text translator” dialog box that appears, the Data Snapshot window with (Field 0, 1, 2, etc.), correspond to the columns in your spreadsheet.

In box under “Select,” use arrows to get to a field you will need to have in the MARC record. Click on field number.

                In “Map to” box, with no spaces, put MARC field tag and first subfield (examples: “264$a” or “856$u” or “300$a”)

                In “Indicators” box, the “\\” (backslashes) represent two (first and second) blank indicators. If either blank indicator needs to be replaced, edit accordingly (examples:  1\  or  30  or  \2, etc.)

                [If a particular field always needs terminal (ending) punctuation and it is not already provided in the spreadsheet, type the appropriate punctuation in the “Term. Punctuation” box.]

Click on “Add Argument.” In the “Arguments” box, the MarcEdit field no. (0, 1, 2, etc.) appears followed by the MARC tag and first subfield, then by a zero.
Repeat the procedure for every field you want added to the MARC record.

If you need to edit or delete an entry in the “Arguments” box, right click on it and choose “Edit item” or “Delete item.” To be able to edit, the argument will appear again in the “Select” box to make necessary changes; choosing delete, the argument is removed from the list.

                Check box for “Save Template.” This will save a template of the fields you want to save for similar additional sheets to create more .mrk files.

Uncheck box for “Sort Fields.”  [recommended]

Click the “Finish” button.

[Before the .mrk edit file is created, it will ask you to name and save your new template (and it will save it as an .mrd file) if you chose to save your template.]

A dialog box then appears confirming your .mrk file has been saved.

This creates another opportunity to review the records you created.  Make needed changes.

SPOT check .mrk file – double checking metadata errors missed in the spreadsheet


                                                Initial articles

                                                Main entries

                                                Subfield and ending punctuation

Spacing – no unwanted spaces at the beginning of a field or the beginning of a subfield

                                                Use Find/replace as necessary

                                                Keep columns in numerical order (i.e., placing 250 between 245 and 264)

The template fields created, edited and added are the elements of the first item on the list.

For foreign language titles, you will often need to change the 2nd indicator in the 245 field.
You will need to change the 008 field if you have multiple or uncertain publication dates
You will probably want to change the 008 field for Place of Publication (positions 15-17) and Language (positions 35-37) at a minimum.

[Note: needed changes must be done on the same page. Each page has 100 titles. If changes are not saved by specific page, information will be lost.]

Once you have saved all your changes, in the MarcEditor menu go to “File,” then click on “Compile File into MARC.”

To convert .mrk file to .mrc file open MarcEdit program again.

Click on MarcEditor Icon

In the menu, go to File, then Open, or click on the folder icon, or type Ctrl + O

Navigate to where your saved MARC text file is (extension “.mrk”). Click “Open”

Dialog box will open.
Navigate to where you want to put the MARC file (preferably in the same folder your related work is saved).
Name the file (make sure it is with an “.mrc” extension). Click “Save.”

Note: to avoid losing data from any of the field columns – insert


Supplemental: Find and Replace

You may go to Edit in the menu and choose Find for editing misspelled words, or inserting or deleting other information. If there is a significant amount of a consistent error, as in wrong subfield, i.e., $z instead of $a, choosing Replace from the Edit menu will help you find all instances and choose to replace one at a time or all instances.

Supplemental: Alternative way to edit 008 field in a .mrk file record

Choose Edit from Insert/Edit 008 in the Edit menu as an alternative to guessing the specific fixed field code in the 008 field on your .mrk record. This facilitates the identification of the appropriate field in the right slot (without having to count spaces). It includes a link to OCLC input standards website for appropriate field code choice.

Supplemental: MARCJoin (to combine several .mrk files into 1 large file) –

                Save all .mrk files in one folder.

Go to Tools on the menu and select MARC Processing Tools, then click on MARCJoin

A new dialog box appears, click on the folder with arrow down icon next to the Save File: box and select the folder that contains your .mrk files; assign a name to the new JOIN file you will create from all all your other .mrk files

In the Files to Join: box, click on all .mrk files you want to join

Then click process

Additional: Field count confirmation (to confirm/verify number of entries as in particular fields: titles, series titles, authors, etc.)

                In the .mrk file menu, choose Reports, click on Field Count

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