GLOSSARY OF TERMS
AV – Audio-Visual –refers to audio cassettes, video cassettes, CD’s, DVD’s, and any other recording that is either audio or visual or both. Other A/V materials include filmstrips, slides, LP’s, flannel graphs, overhead transparencies and other teaching aides that were visual or aural in nature.
Abstract – An abstract is a summary of the important points of a text. In the context of library research “abstracts” generally refers to periodical indexing tools that provide a citation to an article as well as an abstract, that is a summary of the article. For instance Religious and Theological Abstracts, ERIC and
Advanced Search – Develop your own search criteria on a fill-in form. Words or phrases may be combined, expanded or restricted through Boolean operators such as "and", "or", "not.
APA – American Psychological Association. In the context of writing term papers, APA refers to the style manual prepared by this association for publications in this field and is used by many in the social sciences.
Article – A literary composition making up parts of a journal, magazine, encyclopędia, or other collection, but treating a specific topic distinctly and independently. In the context of library research particularly when indexes/abstracts are being discussed the use of the term “articles” is generally referring to those found in journals and magazines.
Audio/Sound – resources in an aural medium such as musical, spoken, books on tape, LP’s, CD’s, audio cassettes, and sound files like MP3 generally exclusive of visuals such as videos and DVD’s.
Basic Search – Search OPAC records by keyword, title (left-anchored), author (alphabetical), subject (alphabetical), name/title search, Dewey Call number, or journal title keyword. Search limits are available only for title searches. In Basic Search mode your search string is read from left to right exactly as it is typed (this is called left anchored) and then it is truncated. This means the search engine will find everything that begins with the search string and anything else that may follow.
Bibliographic information – The systematic description and history of books, their authorship, printing, publication, editions, etc.; information about books and other published materials. The information provided by libraries in their catalogs describing their collections.
Bibliographic research – Research of or pertaining to the written word.
Bibliography – A list of the books, articles or other literary compositions of a particular author, printer, or country, or of those dealing with any particular theme; the literature of a subject. An alphabetic listing of all sources used in a research paper; distinct from Reference List and NOTES.
Book – a set of pages fastened along one side and encased between protective covers. “Books” is sometimes used to refer to all the resources contained in a library even though many of those items are not actually books. See also e-books.
Boolean logic - The use of AND, OR and NOT applied to retrieving documents from an online database. Any variable that can have a logical value of true or false; works with logical rather than numeric relationships. Named for Dr. Boole who was a mathematician that developed a notational system for algebraic manipulation of sets which included the use of AND, OR, and NOT as logical operators.
AND = “both”; “all of these”; each record retrieved must contain all of the search terms.
OR = “either”; “any of these”; each record retrieved must contain at least one of the search terms.
NOT = “no”; eliminates records with the term indicated.
Call Number – the address of an item indicating it’s location within the library. The call number is comprised of the Dewey Decimal number, the Cutter number and often a date or a volume number or even a copy number. Each Dewey Decimal number represents a specific area of knowledge. The Cutter number, a letter/number/letter combination below the Dewey Decimal number, further identifies the work by the author's surname and the title.
CBE – Council of Biology Editors. In the context of writing term papers, CBE refers the style manual used in preparation of research papers intended for publication in the field of Biology.
Circulation Clerk – library employees (usually students) whose primary responsibility is to work at the circulation desk assist patrons by checking materials in and out and collecting fines and fees.
Citation – a reference to a book, passage, article, etc., where certain information may be found. A citation to a book contains the author, title of the work, publisher, date and page numbers. A citation to an article contains the author, title of the article, journal title, volume, issue, date, and page numbers. Citations to online resources generally also require information about the electronic source like the name of the database or provider, the URL and the date accessed. The form of the citation (position of data, punctuation, location within the document, etc) depends on the style being used (APA, MLA, Chicago, Turabian, CBE, etc).
Controlled Vocabulary – a collection of controlled headings which consists of all acceptable terms that will provide direct access to records; unacceptable terms will be cross-referenced to the acceptable ones. Library of Congress Subject Headings is a controlled vocabulary.
Copyright – one of four types of intellectual property protected by federal law in the U.S. giving copyright owners the exclusive right to duplication (reproduction), distribution, derivation, display, and public performance (directly, digitally or by telecommunications). Many other countries also have copyright laws. See Copyright for Higher Education for more information
Credo - An online reference library that provides access to softcopy reference books including encyclopedias, dictionaries, thesauri and books of quotations.
Cutter number – an alphanumeric system devised by C. A. Cutter to represent personal names. It is used by libraries to subdivide works within the same class by the author's surname and the title of the work. For example, the Cutter number for
Default – used in computing to refer to a preselected option adopted by the computer when no alternative is specified by the user.
Dewey Decimal Classification System (DDC) – a hierarchical structure of classifying all areas of knowledge utilizing a numerical notation with the broadest classes represented by 000 to 900. For more information on how the DDC works select “About the Library” on the library Web site and scroll down to Main Book Collection. The TMC Library uses the DDC for arranging its materials with these exceptions: periodicals, which are shelved alphabetically; vertical file materials, which are shelved by LC Subject; TMC chapel tapes which are arranged according to their dates of presentation (for example TMCC880529 = year/month/day respectively). For an outline of the DDC go to Summaries
e-Book - a book whose text is available in an electronic format for reading on a hand-held electronic device or on a computer screen; (occas.) a book whose text is available only or primarily on the Internet. [a proprietary name in the
eJournal – electronic magazines, journals, newspapers available through the public Internet as distinct from those obtained through subscription online databases. This distinction per the library Web site is not necessarily universally recognized.
Endnote – consecutively numbered abbreviated citations placed at the end of each chapter of a research paper instead of footnotes or parenthetical references. Endnotes are listed numerically in the back matter under the heading NOTES.
Essay – A composition of moderate length on any subject where coverage of the topic is not complete or is limited in range.
Field search - A set of one or more characters in a record, which together represent a single item of information. When searching in an online environment, these fields can be designated by the user in order to narrow the focus of the search. For example, in a bibliographic record the title, author and subject fields contain the title of a work, the author of the work and the subject heading assign to the work respectively. Examples of fields on a Web site include the URL, domain, site field, page title, country, file format, date last modified, image and language.
Hold – the means by which patrons may put themselves on a waiting list for an item that is checked out. When the item is returned it is held at the circulation desk for the person on the waiting list.
Image/Video –generally speaking refers to visual materials exclusive of sound such as pictures; filmstrips, slides, photographs, .jpg files; .gif files; MPG files, AVG files. However, in the context of the library Web site refers to databases that index visual files that may also contain sound such as videos, DVD’s, image files, photos, charts, drawings, etc.
ILL – see Interlibrary Loan.
Index – a reference list, usually alphabetical, with an indication of where the items can be found. In the context of the library, an index is a research tool that provides information about where research resources can be found like articles, books, theses/dissertations, reviews, position papers, etc. Strictly speaking an index only provides a citation to the item. Many online indexing tools (see eIndex) will also provide an abstract and often even the full-text of the article. Christian Periodical Index and Guide to Social Science & Religion are indexes in the strict sense of the word in that they do not provide full-text or even abstracts.
Interlibrary Loan (
ISBN – International Standard Book Number. A standard numbering system used to provide unique numbers to a physical manifestation of a work.
Joint Author – a person who collaborates with one or more other persons to produce a work.
Journal – a periodical containing articles on a particular subject. Distinct from magazines in that they contain scholarly articles and/or are intended to disseminate information on current research and development in a specific field.
Check for Full-Text – an online journal link resolver that allows the user to link from an abstract or citation in an online index to the library's periodical holdings list of full-text and print journals. From there, you may link directly to the journal, the article or to the print holdings record in the library catalog. In the event the library does not have the journal in question, Check for Full-Text also provides a link to the interlibrary loan service.eyword – an online searching option that retrieves every record containing each search term found anywhere in the record. Although many database search engines apply keyword to the entire full-text of every document, some will limit their keyword search to a combination of specific fields like author, title, descriptor and abstract rather than the entire text.
Left anchored – a term used in online searching (usually limited to a Title field search) in which the search engine produces records with the title anchored on the left and truncated, that is to say, the system reads the search terms from left to right exactly the way they have been entered. It will then find every record that contains that search string and any variation thereafter.
Library of Congress Classification System - a hierarchical structure of classifying all areas of knowledge utilizing an alpha/numeric notation with the broadest classes represented by A-Z. See Library of Congress Classification Outline for a complete outline of this system.
Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) – a standard controlled vocabulary of subject terms that includes a list of unacceptable terms and references to narrower, broader and related terms. Because many libraries and even many providers of bibliographic databases around the world use the LCSH in cataloging their records, researchers are able to find related resources more easily. Not to be confused with the Library of Congress Classification System.
LPs – Long-Playing phonograph record made of vinyl.
Magazine - A periodical containing articles on a variety of topics written to provide information to a broad audience, to entertain, to sell products and/or to promote a viewpoint. (See also Periodical)
Manuscript – writings (including musical scores, maps, etc.) made by hand, typescripts, and inscriptions on clay tablets, stone, etc.
MARC records – MAchine Readable Cataloging - a standard format for the encoding and representation of bibliographic information in machine-readable form. Most libraries and many bibliographic database providers create their digital records in MARC format enabling them to be easily uploaded/downloaded between databases as well as easily searched by the end user.
Medium – format of non-book resources available in a library (e.g. video recording, sound recording, globe, projected graphic, microform)
Microfiche - flat pieces of film, approximately 4 X 6 inches, containing microphotographs of the pages of a book, periodical, catalog, etc.
Microfilm - rolls of 16mm or 35mm microphotographs of the pages of a book, periodical, catalog, etc.
Microform – any microphotographic information storage medium, such as microfiche and microfilm requiring magnification in order to produce a readable image.
MLA – Modern Language Association. In the context of writing term papers, MLA is used to refer to the style manual prepared by this association for publications in this field and is used by many in the humanities.
Monograph – A bibliographic resource that is complete in one part or is intended to be completed within a finite number of parts; A book. A detailed written study of a single specialized topic (distinguished from general studies in which the topic is dealt with as part of a wider subject).
NetLibrary – a collection of electronic books in five subject areas: Economics & Business, Education, Religion, Psychology and Social Science from these publishers: Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press, Yale University Press,
Parenthetical cite – an abbreviated citation within a research paper using only the authors’ name and date of publication set off by parenthesis. Parenthetical citations are then placed in a Reference List at the end of the paper. See also endnote and footnote)
Periodical Holdings List - indicates which periodical titles are held by the library as well as inclusive dates and format availability -- Microform, physical, electronic. . For all periodical titles available through the TMC library go to library Web site and select Periodical Holdings from the menu on the left. From this page you can find magazines, journals & newspapers by title or by subject. There are also links to the online indexes that provide full-text articles.
Plagiarism – the act of taking and using as one's own the thoughts, writings, or inventions of another.
Portal – in the context of the library’s Web site refers to Web sites that are gateways to a variety of selected Web sites as distinct from search engines which find Web sites based on specified search criteria or subject directories which provide a list of Web sites arranged by subject.
Q (Oversized Books) = books too large to fit on the shelves in the main collection; generally shelved in a separate location.
Realia – an artifact or naturally occurring entity as opposed to a replica (i.e. object, toy, game).
Relevance Ranking – a programmed algorithm applied to online search engines which results in displaying first the retrieved records that are most likely to be relevant to the search query and decreasing in order of likely relevance. Among the more commonly used ranking criteria are: term frequency (the number of times the term occurs in the document), document frequency (the number of documents containing the term), proximity of query words, variant word forms (stemming), and document length.
Remote access – the use of electronic resources via computer networks when the user is not directly connected to the network. All subscription databases are accessible to the TMC community when logged onto a computer that is not physically located on campus or directly logged into the MasterNet network.
Reserves - Reserved materials consist of books, videos, DVD’s, audio cassettes or any other items a professor wishes to make available to an entire class for a whole semester or a portion of the semester. These select materials are located behind the circulation desk and have unique circulation requirements. Go to Library Services ąCourse Reserves on the Library’s Web site for more details on policy and procedure for using this service.
SCILNET – Santa Clarita Interlibrary Network. A cooperative network of libraries in the Santa Clarita Valley whose purpose is to permit sharing of resources among members. See the SCILNET bookmark available on the Reference desk for more information including a list of participating libraries.
Series - A set of literary compositions having certain features in common, published successively or intended to be read in sequence (e.g. a periodical, the publications of a society, etc.) Also, a succession of books issued by one publisher in a common form and having some similarity of subject or purpose; usually with a general title, such as ‘Society of Biblical Literature Monograph Series’, ‘Christ in the Bible Series’.
Style Manual – a guide to the formatting, mechanics, grammar and punctuation of formal papers such as term papers, theses, and dissertations. Included are instructions for margins, spacing, headings, treatment of numbers, italics, capitalization, presentation of quotations, citations, bibliographical references and many other issues relating to the general presentation of a scholarly paper. Commonly used styles in higher education include APA, MLA and Chicago or Turabian
Subject Browse - in the OPAC’s Basic Search screen searching this field produces an alphabetic list of Library of Congress Subject Headings.
Subject Directory – enables searching of the public Internet by subject category
Title (Left Anchored) – in the OPAC’s Basic Search screen this field searches for a title reading the terms from left to right exactly as written. This is distinct from a Title keyword search which looks for all the terms anywhere in the title field regardless of position.
Truncate – means to shorten or cut off. In the context of online searching it refers to using a root word as a search term in conjunction with a prescribed command determined by the search engine (in the case of our OPAC the “?” is the command to truncate). The search engine will then search for every instance of the root word and every possible variation following. For example truncating “bank” like this, “bank?” will retrieve records containing: bank, banked, banks, banking or bankruptcy.
Turabian – refers to the style manual written by Kate L. Turabian conforming to the Chicago style entitled “A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations”. Turabian has become one of the basic styles used by undergraduate and graduate students in the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences. It is the required style for the Bible Department, Biblical Counseling Department and Center for Professional Studies Department of The Master's College and by The Master’s Seminary.
Tutorial - Any period of training; a printed account or explanation of a subject intended for private study. In the case of the Library’s Research Guides & Tutorials, the site will host training on copyright law and perhaps other topics related to research.
Verso – the left-hand page of a book, usually bearing an even page number. The side of a printed sheet intended to be read second.
Vertical File - File cabinets containing booklets, position papers, pamphlets, maps, and other information relating to missions, religious themes, and The Master's College. Materials in the Vertical File cannot be identified via the OPAC however; a subject listing to the vertical file is located on top of the file cabinets.
Web Resources - a directory of reputable scholarly Web sites on the TMC Library Web page that have been evaluated by librarians, scholars and other experts in the field.
Web Sites – a set of interconnected pages on the World Wide Web prepared and maintained as a collection of information by a person or organization. As used in context of the TMC library Web Sites refers to direct links to carefully selected Web sites evaluated by subject specialists and librarians.
Last updated June, 2010