StaffGuide: Receiving & Processing

Supplements: General Info



First, consult the check-in record notes. See if there are explicit instructions for handling said supplement (supplement check-in will be discussed further here). If there are none, the supplement, along with the parent issue, will need to be sent to the Receiving Specialist for review.

Most sups arrive in the same packaging as the parent issue, but as a separate item. Others will be mailed separately. Often sups will come inside the issue with removable glue. These are considered separate items and should be removed, which can be done by Serials staff (see Glued-In Items section below for more information).

***Most sups or separate sections with their own pagination that are stapled in the middle of the parent issue do NOT need to be removed, but there are occasional exceptions, which will be indicated in the check-in record notes. Please note that removal of any stapled-in items should be done so by PRESERVATION staff. Please check the item in and add the public note "@serials:binding (d/i)" before sending it to Preservation.***

For a new sup that accompanies a regular issue: check in and label the main issue as you normally would. Tuck the sup into the main issue and place both pieces on the Receiving Specialist’s desk for review. The sup will either be discarded, checked in, or returned to you, along with the main issue, with check-in instructions.

For a piece that arrives by itself but is clearly a supplement to a journal (i.e. it says "a supplement to [parent title]" on the cover or in a publisher letter that comes with it), place it on the Receiving Specialist’s desk with a post-it stating the bib number of the parent title and that it needs a sup review, or follow any existing instructions in the parent title’s record for the item in question.

Occasionally, you will receive an unfamiliar, separate piece that is not clearly a supplement, but sometimes a Sierra search using keyword or author, will result in a title that the piece may be associated with (i.e. same organization, same subject matter, etc.). Also, using the piece's title in a journal title or title search, you may find the parent title's record if the piece is a named sup, as named sups are added to the bib record as alternate titles and are therefore searchable. Otherwise, these items should go to the Receiving Specialist for review along with any helpful info you could find.

Most advertisements, product catalogs, and conference agendas will be discarded. However, if the advertisement appears to have useful information (for example, many advertisements that come with pest management journals are treated as sups because they are relevant to research in that area), send it to the Receiving Specialist for a sup review. Always review the sup notes in the check-in record to see if there are exceptions and/or instructions on how to process specific items.

Supplement Check-In Record Notes

Supplement Check-In Record Notes


Supplement check-in record notes

Supplement check-in record notes

The above screenshot, from the journal Pest Control Technology, contains good examples of a variety of sup notes you are likely to encounter in a check-in record. It contains general instructions for what types of supplemental material to review for check-in for this title, as well as specifics on both wanted and unwanted sups that have already been reviewed.

You will most commonly see "SUP" for sups that have been approved for check-in. These generally include the sup's title, which can be copied and pasted into the public note area of the check-in box. They often contain info about which issue the sup first appeared with, which could help you determine if it should be reviewed to become a named sup.

If you receive a sup that is not listed in these notes, it has probably not been reviewed and will need to be passed along to the Receiving Specialist before being checked in.

You'll also notice that a couple of these sups specify "bind with title" or "discard at time of bind." These types of notes have to do with what will happen to the sup when it comes time to bind the issues of the title into a bound volume. These instructions should be added to the staff note area of the sup's check-in box and written on the strip if the sup was a glued-in item.

These notes will also contain instructions for posters or any other special format sups, as well as any items that are listed in the HSD. Most HSD items mentioned in sup notes will be discarded, but not always. When you see HSD notes you will need to follow the instructions found in the HSD instructions page.

Glued-In Items



Often, while flipping through an issue to check for oddities, defects, etc., you will find an item that is glued onto a page or strip inside the issue. Glued-in items are often sups. Any glued-in item, whether it is inside the issue or attached to the front cover, regardless of whether it's a sup or unwanted item like a single-page advertisement, will need to be removed during the check-in process. Serials that are processed and sent the collection should not have any glued items in or on them.

Guidelines on glued-in items:

  • Remove glued-in items carefully and slowly, using extra caution when removing from a thin page. Use your finger to gently separate the glue from the page. If the glue is too sticky or difficult to remove, pass the issue along to Preservation for review, adding a public note to the checked-in parent issue that reads “@serials:binding (d/i).”
  • If the item was glued to a strip, write the sup/item information on the strip to help clarify to the personnel doing the binding as to what was removed and what to do/has been done with it: title, issue number, cover date, pagination (if removal of the sup results in a gap), and decision (generally one of the following: “bind w/ title,” “discard at time of bind,” “decide at time of bind,” or "discarded").
  • If item was glued directly to the page, there is no need to write the item information on the page or in the journal. The item simply needs to be removed.

Supplement Check-In



If the supplement has undergone review and can be checked in:

Consult the SUP notes, for example:

Sup notes

It is also a good idea to, if still in the card, check previous boxes for previous issues of the same sup for patterns.If you receive an item listed as a sup, such as the "School Guide" from the above example, you will do the following:

  • Create a sup box for the item by selecting, then right-clicking the box after the main issue, then selecting "box menu," then "insert supplement boxes before selected."
  • Sup boxes need the following:
    • Cover date and enumeration. The way the cover date and enumeration are listed for sups varies, but they will often use the same cover date as the main issue and the corresponding enumeration in brackets followed by "sup.," or sometimes just “sup.,” or even the title as enumeration on rare occasion. See pics below for a couple examples. Consult the Receiving Specialist if you have questions.
    • Title of the sup in public note (exact wording to be determined by the Serials Processing Specialist).
    • In the staff note, what will be done with the sup if it is for a bound title (usually one of the following: “bind w/ title,” “discard at time of bind,” or “decide at time of bind”).
  • Check the sup in and label it, as you would any other periodical.
    • NOTE: Occasionally, the check-in record will tell you to change the label type when checking in sups. If so, you will need to temporarily change to the label type specified by the instructions (the first drop-down menu to the left in the check-in record), check the sup in, then change it back to the main label type the journal normally uses (save again).
  • Count the sup on your statistics sheet, which should generally be the same sheet and category for the parent title, unless the instructions specify otherwise.

Examples of how a supplement box looks after checking in the piece:

Sup check-in box sup with title as enumeration

Named Sups



Sups that have arrived and been checked in at least 3 times should be reviewed by the Receiving Specialist to possibly become “named sups” (which means that the sup will be listed as an alternate title in the parent title’s bib record, which makes the sup searchable in OneSearch).

How do I tell if a sup is already a named sup or needs named sup review?

  • Look in the check-in record notes, which will often state the date of the first occurrence of the sup. For example, if we were in the year 2015 and you received a new issue of Economist's "World In..." sup, since the notes state that the sup began in 2013, is is a good indication that this is the 3rd occurrence of the sup:

Sup note with date of first received

  • You can then check the check-in card for boxes of the sup from previous years, to get a better idea of how many times we have received it. Many sups have the title, followed by the year if it is an annual sup.Let's say hypothetically that this box said 2014. That would indicate that the 2015 issue you just received is the sup's 3rd occurrence and therefore should undergo a named sup review.

Sup check-in box

  • More recent instructions for named sups will have "NAMED SUP" in front of their check-in record notes, and others will have a note added by the Serials Processing Specialist indicating which year or edition will need to be reviewed for a named sup (something like "review for named sup in 2021").
  • The bib record is a great place to check, which will have any named sups listed near the parent journal's title (the 245) as alt titles in either 222 or 246 fields:

Alt title listings in bib

Include Sups ("Incl Sup")



As of April 2018, we are no longer processing "INCL SUPs," i.e. supplements that are bound or stapled inside of the main issue but have their own pagination and/or are listed in the TOC or on the cover as a supplement. We are generally only interested in supplements that are separate items, but there are occasionally exceptions. For example, most flip-over sups (tête-bêche supplements) are still processed as sups, so keep an eye open for any INCL SUP notes that have instructions on how to treat them.

Here are a couple of examples, with instructions for a flip-over sup and an INCL SUP that we still process:

flip-over sup instructions

Include sup instructions


Special Format Sups



Sometimes posters arrive with publications.

If a poster is received with an item to be checked-in, examine the check-in record for instructions on how to treat the poster. If directions are present, please read carefully and follow them. Some posters are discarded, some are sent to a librarian for display, while others are checked in as sups and perhaps sent to Binding to be held, such as this one:

Poster Directions

Most posters that are checked in will be need to be identified by the title of the poster in the public note of the supplement check-in box. (Note: If the poster is double-sided and each side has a unique poster title, please be sure to identify both sides in the public note of the box. You can do this by separating each side with a semicolon or a slash. For example: "Poster: Civics in Action / American Presidents"), or:

Poster Title Box

If there are no check-in record notes regarding posters, treat the poster as a possible supplement and pass it, along with the main issue, on to the Receiving Specialist for review.


Occasionally a journal will come with a sup in CD or DVD format. For instructions on checking in these media materials, go here.


A few journals, geographic magazines for instance, may occasionally come with maps. These have very specific instructions and are processed differently than other sups.For example, they will likely involve creating item records, printing the call number label from the item record, and processing the piece for a different location, which would require you to count it differently on your statistics sheet. Below is an example of map processing instructions and the resulting check-in boxes with notes:

map processing instructions

Map boxes

Bind Info Notes for Discarded Issues (Limited Retention Titles and Supplements, etc.)


With limited retention titles, you will often need to perform card maintenance after several issues have been discarded. The discard process is generally performed by either Preservation personnel or student employees. Full discard procedures can be found in the Discard Area section of the Serials Work Study & Hourly Employees StaffGuide.

However, the Receiving Specialist will be responsible for deleting the boxes for these issues after the main discard process has been completed. When checking in limited retention titles, watch for clusters of suppressed boxes with the "removed" status. If you see these, look for a corresponding BIND INFO note in the check-in record. This note should indicate the dates and enumeration of the discarded issues, which should match the removed boxes in the check-in card, followed by the date and initials of the staff member that did the discarding. Example:

bind info note with discarded issue info

After you've confirmed that the info in the note matches the info in the "removed" boxes, you can delete the removed boxes. Once you've done this, add a brief explanation that you've deleted the boxes to the end of said BIND INFO note, like the example above.


You may sometimes come across an isolated box with the "removed" status rather than clusters. These will often be discarded supplements. The parent titles themselves are usually bound titles, but some supplements to bound titles are not permanently retained. You can confirm that this is the case by examining the sup notes and finding a note indicating that the sup is checked in and processed, but will ultimately get discarded when it comes time to bind the parent title:

instructions for sup to be discarded

You will follow the same procedures for these discarded individual supplements that you would for rows of discarded issues in a normal limited retention situation. There should be a bind info note corresponding to the removed box. After verifying this, you can proceed to delete the removed box and add a brief note to the bind info note that you've deleted the box.