a    Full score

b    Full score, miniature or study size

c    Accompaniment reduced for keyboard

d    Voice score

e    Condensed score or piano-conductor score

g    Close score

m   Multiple score formats

n    Not applicable

u    Unknown

z    Other


The format of music code is a one-character alphabetic code that indicates the format of a musical composition (e.g., piano-conductor score).  Information for this data element is generally derived from terms appearing in field 300 (Physical Description).

If the item being cataloged consists of one or more scores along with other materials (e.g., one or more parts), consider only the score or scores in coding this character position.


The OCLC default code indicated above is not a MARC 21 value.  All CONSER authenticated records must include an appropriate MARC 21 code as listed.

Code definitions

a    Full score.

Use code "a" if the item is a full score, consisting of a series of staves containing all the instrumental and/or vocal parts of a musical work, arranged so that they can be read simultaneously.

008/20  a

300 ## scores …

b    Full score, miniature or study size.

Use code "b" if the item is a miniature score, that is usually smaller in size and not intended to be used in performances.

008/20  b

300 ## miniature scores …

c    Accompaniment reduced for keyboard.

Use code "c" if the accompaniment is reduced for keyboard instrument(s), and the voice and/or instrumental parts remain the same.

008/20  c

300 ## scores + parts …

[Accompaniment reduced for keyboard.]

NOTE:  Assign codes "c" and "d" strictly on the basis of the presence or absence of accompaniment.  Terms such as "choral score" or "vocal score" which may appear in the item or in the cataloging record do not affect the choice of a code.

d    Voice score.

Use code "d" for music in which the accompaniment to vocal or choral parts has been omitted and only the voice parts remain.  Vocal and choral works originally unaccompanied are assigned other codes as appropriate.

008/20  d

300 ## vocal scores …

[Accompaniment omitted.]

e    Condensed score or piano-conductor score.

Use code "e" for orchestral or band music that has been reduced to a few staves.  It may be part of an ensemble work for a particular instrument, with cues for other instruments.  Such a score is used by an individual playing the instrument for which the score was written or for the conductor.

008/20  e

300 ## condensed scores …

g    Close score.

Use code "g" if the item is a close score (e.g., a hymnal) that has separate parts transcribed on two staves.

008/20  g

300 ## close scores …

m   Multiple score formats.

Use code "m" if several types of scores are issued together, as is frequently the case with band music.

008/20  m

300 ## scores : $b ill. ; $c 30 cm. + $a piano conductor parts

n    Not applicable.

Use code "n" if the item is not printed or manuscript music (e.g., a sound recording).

008/20  n

300 ## sound discs …

u    Unknown.

Use code "u" if the format of the item is unknown.

z    Other.

Use code "z" for a format of music for which none of the other defined codes are appropriate.  Usually it signifies that the item is not a score.  Piano music, compositions in graphic notation, and compositions that consist only of instructions for performance are examples in which code "z" is appropriate.  Sets of parts are also assigned code "z."

008/20  z

300 ## v. of music …

008/20  z

300 ## parts

Related fields, etc.


008/20  006/03  (MARC 21 Format for Bibliographic Data)

See also:


Section E.  MARC 21 Format for Serials as Applied Within CONSER

CONSER Editing Guide:  Contents