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More Library Jargon Resources

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Library Jargon Definitions

Each field or discipline uses unique language. Learning the language of the area you are studying is an important aspect of research. Here are brief definitions of some library terms:


Library Catalog

A database of materials in the Library’s collection (aka search this to find out what the library has).



The loan of library materials. The act of checking out (aka borrowing) library materials such as books. 



Any collection of records stored in an electronic format. Each item (i.e. a book or an article) has a record. Common library databases are used to find books and other library materials (the catalog) or to locate articles (journal databases).


InterLibrary Loan (aka ILL or ILLiad)

Libraries lend materials to each other and library users (that’s you!) may request that items (including journal articles) be borrowed for them. Contact us via 24/7 Chat if you need help with InterLibrary Loan. 


Network Printing

Library computers (including wirelessly via laptops) send documents to printers via the network.



Anything accessed via a network or the Internet.



Newspapers, magazines and journals. Things that are published periodically. 


Reference or Research Services

Services designed to help users find and use information. We provide reference (aka research) services in-person, online (email, via Zoom appointment, and 24/7 chat), and via phone. 



Short for bookstacks, which is another term for bookshelves.