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Library Terms You Need to Know
abstract - A brief summary of the content of a book or article.
Boolean logic - using short words (AND, OR, NOT) to tell a database how search words related to each other. AND narrows a search. OR broadens a search. NOT removes a concept from a search. Examples: cats AND leukemia, cats OR felines, cats NOT siamese.
citation - A short description of a book, article or web page that has been quoted or used as a source. MLA style example: Burns, Tom, and Sandra Sinfield. Essential Study Skills: The complete guide to success at university. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, 2003.
controlled vocabulary/descriptors - Carefully selected words or phrases used to tag information for easy retrieval. Example: pants may be the descriptor for trousers, slacks, dungarees, etc.
database - A searchable electronic catalog or index that helps you find articles and other library materials.
link resolver - Allows you to get from the citation to the actual article (full text), regardless of which database you find it in. Ours is UC-eLinks.
interlibrary loan - A free library service that allows you to borrow materials from other libraries.
journal - A scholarly magazine that contains articles written by professors, researchers or experts in a subject area.
truncation - A search technique in which you use a symbol to search for variations on a word. Example: educat* searches educate, education, educator, etc.