Study Skills for 6th Format Newcastle University Library

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Library jargon

Confused-looking toy robotWords and phrases used in libraries

Below is a list of words commonly used in libraries along with their definitions.

Once you’ve read through these test your knowledge with the matching terms pyramid game.

Abstract

A summary of the main points covered in an article or book. Read the abstract to decide if you need to read the full article or book.

Archives

Documents and papers which have been preserved permanently for their historical or research value. The Library’s archives are held in Special Collections.

Article

A short written work usually published in a journal, magazine or newspaper.

Bibliography

A list of references showing which books and journals an author has referred to or consulted.

Copyright

The laws protecting “intellectual property” such as books, journals, images, films, music and databases.

Database

A body of information organised to that it can be easily searched.

Dewey decimal system

A classification system used to organise books by subject. Each book has a number or classmark and are shelved in numerical order.

E-book

An electronic or online version of a printed book.

E-journal

An electronic or online version of a printed journal.

Edition

Books can be issued more than once, and edition refers to which time it was issued. The latest edition will usually contain revised and updated information.

Folio

Term used to describe an item that is too large to fit on the ordinary shelves and is stored in the Oversize section of the Library.

Government Publications

Materials published by UK Parliament and Government departments and agencies, such as Acts of Parliament, Bills, Departmental Reports and transcripts of the proceedings in the House of Commons and the House of Lords.

Index

An alphabetical listing of subjects and names in a book, showing the page numbers on which a particular subject or name can be found.

ISBN

An International Standard Book Number is a unique 10-13 digit number given to every book published. You can search for books this way.

ISSN

An Internal Standard Serial Number is a unique 8 digit number given to every journal published.

Journal

A publication issued in separate parts over a period of time and often containing articles on primary and current research. Another word for a journal is a periodical.

Keyword

A word that you use in order to find an item when searching an electronic database.

Library Search

Newcastle University Library’s search engine to find resources.

Periodical

A publication issued in separate parts over a period of time and often containing articles on primary and current research. Another word for a periodical is a journal.

Plagiarism

Using the words or ideas of other people and saying they are your own.

Quarto

Used to describe a large item which is too large to fit on the ordinary shelves and can be found in the oversize section of the Library.

Reference

An acknowledgement that an idea, quote or piece of information that you have used in your work is taken from someone else’s work and information about where you have taken it from.

Reference only

Items which can only be used in the Library and cannot be borrowed.

Research reserve

A collection of less heavily used books and journals which are held off-campus.

Shelfmark

The number used to arrange books on the Library shelves based on the dewey decimal system. It is normally found on the spine of a book.

Special Collections

The Library’s collections of rare, historical or special material including books, archives and manuscripts.

STC – Student Texts Collection

A collection of books and journals which are in heavy demand and are consequently only available for a short period of time.