Librarian's Corner   Library logo

In order to use the library successfully, it is helpful to understand certain library terms and concepts. The following definitions will get you acquainted with the ORU Library. If you have any questions ask the librarian at the Reference Desk for assistance.

A  | B | C | D | E | F| G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S |T |U | V | W | X | Y | Z 

An abstract is a brief summary of an article or book

A bibliographic citation is information that identifies an article or book. In general, an article citation includes the author, title of the article, title of periodical, volume, page(s), and date; a book citation usually includes the author, title, publisher, and date. (See Citing/ Documenting Sources or refer to a print style manual for more citation information.)

A biography is information about a person.

Boolean operators such as "AND", "OR", or "NOT" are used when searching databases. They combine search terms in order to narrow or expand the search results. Use AND to narrow the search by linking terms together (sleep AND students). Use OR to broaden a concept by including more terms to describe it (teens OR young adults OR youth). Use NOT to eliminate terms that you do not want in your search results.

Bound periodicals are issues or volumes of journals or magazines that are sewn together under one hard cover. They are shelved according to call numbers in the Periodicals area.

Call numbers are unique combinations of numbers and letters that identify the book (or other library material) and its place on the shelf relative to other books. more info...

CD-ROM (Compact Disc - Read Only Memory) is a technology for putting information, such as periodical indexes and abstracts, on a small disc so it can be accessed by a computer.

Citation - See "Bibliographic citation."

Circulation (desk)is the library department that checks out and reshelves materials, and handles overdue fines. more info...

A database is a resource of organized information, CD-ROM or online, that includes indexes and citations but may also include abstracts and full text. Examples of periodical databases include Academic Source Premier, Business Source Premier and ERIC; examples of ebook databases are NetLibrary and ebrary. Note: EBSCOhost is not a database but part of EBSCO Information Service, which develops, produces and provides research databases, and more.

The Electronic Resources Center (ERC), located on the 4th floor of the LRC, houses the library computers that have access to ORU’s databases and the Internet.

Full text, which may be used in conjunction with "database," "journal" (periodical title) or "article," identifies that the entire article is online. In reference to full text databases, although the majority of the articles in the database are available in full text, some are indexed only.

Functionality refers to the useful features and behaviors that a computer program or application, such as a database. It answers the question, "What does it do?"

An index is a reference source that lists citations to articles on a particular topic, name, place, etc. An index list provides bibliographical information on selected subjects, or topics, under various search categories such as author, title, and keyword.

User interface refers to the way data is input and how information is displayed on the computer monitor.

Interlibrary loan is a library service (department) that gets materials from other libraries. more info... | Key Points: ILL

IPAC (Internet Public Access Catalog) is the computer card catalog that enables you to locate books and other materials in the Learning Resources Center.

A journal is a publication that contains scholarly articles with bibliographies written by experts concerning research in professional and academic fields. Examples: Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare, Asbury Theological Journal, Nonprofit Management and Leadership, and Shakespeare Quarterly. Not all scholarly journals contain the word "journal" in the title.

The journals list, or A to Z Journals List, is an ORU database that contains all ORU periodical titles--journals, magazines, newspapers, trade publications--with links to online full text titles and a link to the ORU library catalog for those titles that are available in microform, CD-ROM, and/or print formats.

A magazine is a periodical that contains articles of interest to the public. Magazines usually have colorful covers, many pictures, and contain advertising. Usually there is no bibliography. Examples: Newsweek, Nature, Consumer Reports, Money, Modern Bride, and Time. Some periodicals that have the word "journal" in the title are not scholarly journals. For example, The Wall Street Journal.

Microfiche ("mi-kro-feesh"-"mi-kro-fish") is the same thing as microfilm, but instead of being a long strip of film on a spool, microfiche is a sheet of plastic film about 4 by 6 inches in size.

Microfilm is a strip of film that is wound on a spool and contains magazine articles or other material reduced in size. The print is too small to see without the aid of one of the projectors in the periodicals room on the fourth floor.

Microform is the general term for any kind of information that is reduced in size and put on a form of plastic sheeting.

Peer reviewed means experts in the field evaluated the validity of an article before publication.

Periodical is the generic name for a "periodic" publication such as newspaper, journal, or magazine.

The Periodicals area is located on the fourth floor, LRC. This area houses magazines, professional journals, newspapers, electronic resources for periodical indexes, Internet, and full text articles on CD-ROM or on-line.

Refereed refers to journals or articles that are peer reviewed.

Reference books are books that cannot be checked out of the library, but you are welcome to use them while in the library. They are kept in the Reference Room on the fourth floor. more info...

Remote access refers to the availability of many of ORU's electronic resources via the Internet to off campus ORU students, faculty, and staff. Information on remote access is available at the Reference Desk. more info...

Reserve materials are materials that professors choose to set aside to ensure the entire class has access to them. Students can use reserve materials in the library or check them out for a short time, such as for two hours or maybe overnight. Reserve materials are located at the Circulation Desk. (Books are put on reserve so that everyone in a class does not have to buy the books and so that one person will not check out the book for the normal two-week period, thus keeping anyone else from using the book.)

Truncation refers to a special search symbol used at the end of a word in order to retrieve all possible endings of that word. A common truncation symbol is the asterisk (*). For example, searching "evangel*" retrieves the words evangel, evangelists, evangelism, evangelical, evangelized, etc. Additional information about truncation can be found in the Help section of the database you are searching.