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Library Terminology

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L

Limits/limiters: "Options used in searching that restrict your results to only information resources meeting certain other, non-subject-related, criteria. Limiting options vary by database, but common options include limiting results to materials available full-text in the database, to scholarly publications, to materials written in a particular language, to materials available in a particular location, or to materials published at a specific time."

Link: See Hyperlink

M

Magazine: "A publication, issued on a regular basis, containing popular articles, written and illustrated in a less technical manner than the articles found in a journal."

Microform: "A reduced sized photographic reproduction of printed information on reel to reel film (microfilm) or film cards (microfiche) or opaque pages that can be read with a microform reader/printer."

Mouse: "A device that allows the user to move and click the cursor on a computer screen for different functions."

Multimedia: "Any information resource that presents information using more than one media (print, picture, audio, or video)."

N

Newspaper: "A publication containing information about varied topics that are pertinent to general information, a geographic area, or a specific subject matter (i.e. business, culture, education). Often published daily."

O

Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC): "A computerized database that can be searched in various ways—such as by keyword, author, title, subject, or call number—to find out what resources a library owns. OPAC’s will supply listings of the title, call number, author, location, and description of any items matching one's search. Also referred to as “library catalog” or “online catalog.” To find books and videos owned by Reynolds Library, use the library catalog. See also Catalog.

P

PDF: "A file format developed by Adobe Acrobat® that allows files to be transmitted from one computer to another while retaining their original appearance both on-screen and when printed. An acronym for Portable Document Format."

Peer reviewed journal: "Peer review is a process by which editors have experts in a field review books or articles submitted for publication by the experts’ peers. Peer review helps to ensure the quality of an information source by publishing only works of proven validity, methodology, and quality. Peer-reviewed journals are also called refereed or scholarly journals."

Periodical: "An information source published in multiple parts at regular intervals (daily, weekly, monthly, biannually). Journals, magazines, and newspapers are all periodicals." To find out if we have a specific journal, magazine or newspaper title available in full-text, use our Journal Finder tool. See also: Serial.

Primary source: "An original record of events, such as a diary, a newspaper article, a public record, or scientific documentation."

Print: "The written symbols of a language as portrayed on paper. Information sources may be either print or electronic." Print Card: "A card that enables its user to print from a computer, or to make copies of a document at a photocopy machine. Student ID cards sometimes serve as copy cards." For more information see the Printing Help page.

Proxy server: "An Internet server that acts as a “go-between” for a computer on a local network (secure system) and the open Web. Often checks to determine “right of access” to the secure environment and speeds up requests by caching frequently accessed Web pages. Can also act as a firewall."