English

FAST (Faceted Application of Subject Terminology)

FAST (Faceted Application of Subject Terminology) is one of the library domain’s most widely used subject terminology schemas and is a collaborative effort between OCLC Research and the Library of Congress dating all the way back to 1998.

FAST headings are added to all OCLC WorldCat records that have LCSH. Over the last few months, OCLC has been actively working to transition FAST from an experimental research environment to OCLC production servers. We are excited to report that:

  • FAST data is now supported by OCLC’s production environment
  • FAST URIs are now supported in an OCLC production namespace (id.worldcat.org/fast/xxxxx)

The tools you use to find or assign FAST headings (searchFAST, assignFAST, FAST Converter), as well as the FAST headings themselves, have not changed due to this transition.

If your library has bibliographic records that do not include FAST headings, you can use Worldshare Collection Manager.

  1. Use WorldCat updates to get records with FAST headings in the future:
    • Receive updated records when WorldCat master records are enhanced with FAST headings or other data.
  2. Use WorldCat query collections or WorldCat data sync to update existing records:
    • Use WorldCat query collections to create a customized set of WorldCat records with FAST headings to replace your existing records.
    • Use WorldCat data sync collections to send records to OCLC that lack FAST headings and get back WorldCat records that include FAST headings.

Additionally, we have partnered with representatives from the library community to create a new FAST Policy and Outreach Committee (FPOC). FPOC is an advisory and outreach body that will represent users of FAST for the purposes of:

  • Establishing editorial policies regarding terms
  • Overseeing community engagement, term contributions, and procedures
  • Recommending directions and goals for development/improvements
  • And much more (see http://oc.lc/FASTcommittee for additional details)

The FPOC Committee has established the following vision statement:

"FAST will be a fully supported, widely adopted and community developed general subject vocabulary derived from LCSH with tools and services that serve the needs of diverse communities and contexts."


Are you interested in keeping up to date with FAST-related activities or joining working groups to help shape the future of FAST? If yes, then please consider joining the FACETVOC-L (Faceted Controlled Vocabularies discussion) listserv. The information to join this listserv is available below.

Service availability

  • FAST (Faceted Application of Subject Terminology)

    Available everywhere

Join this listserv

Join FACETVOC-L, a listserv discussion of all Faceted Controlled Vocabularies. To subscribe, simply send an e-mail message to listserv@oclclists.org with the word "subscribe FACETVOC-L" in the body of your message. To post messages, simply send an e-mail message to FACETVOC-L@oclclists.org.

Recent news

Watch this space for FAST news.