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Glossary

 

 Abstracting: the process of summarising concisely and accurately the content of a document, usually in the context of indexing and abstracting services.

Abstracting and indexing servicea service, usually offered on a commercial basis, which provides access to surrogate records of information resources (and increasingly to the information resources themselves). The techniques such services apply are closely related to, or often the same as, those used in information centres.

Access point: a name, term, code, etc. under which a bibliographic record may be searched and identified (AACR2 2002)

Added entrya characteristic of a document which is useful for identifying that document but which is of lesser significance than a characteristic selected as the primary (main) entry; in a card catalogue or printed book catalogue, a brief version of a bibliographic record. See also main entry

Alphabetical indexing languagean indexing language in which the subject terms are selected from words or phrases in common use in the literature of the subject field being described. Examples of alphabetical indexing languages include thesauri and subject headings lists

Author: the person chiefly responsible for the creation of the intellectual or artistic content of a work (AACR2 2002)

Authority control: the process of ensuring that the headings for names (of people, corporate bodies and places) and for titles (of documents and of series) and subjects in an information retrieval system are used consistently

Authority file: a mechanism for recording and implementing authority control decisions

Automatic classificationclassification automatically assigned without human intervention, based on characteristics of the document

Bibliographic classification: a classification which is concerned with subjects as they are presented in documents and with the documents themselves, not with the objects and entities which are the primary interest of other kinds of classification schemes

Bibliographic organisation: the organising of the bibliographic information that users of libraries and information centres need in order to find and select the information resources that allow them to acquire the knowledge they seek

Bibliographic record: a metadata record produced by cataloguers according to defined standards and included in a library catalogue or bibliographic database

 Bibliographic utility: a non-profit organization serving as a source of bibliographic data stored in machine-readable form, which data are available to those affiliated with the utility (usually library members) for such purposes as online cataloguing and interlibrary loan through a telecommunications network (ALA World Encyclopedia of Library and Information Services, 1993)

Bibliographya list (usually exhaustive or comprehensive) of information resources in a specified field, usually with no geographical limitation on where the information resources are located

Brevity: the requirement that notation in a bibliographic classification scheme should be as short as possible

Broker network: a network which functions as a service centre of a larger bibliographic utility, such as OCLC, and which may, in addition, host local union catalogues and act as a focal point for local activities

Catalogue: a list of information resources gathered in a single collection or set of locations, for example, in one library, or accessible from that location

Cataloguingthe process of compiling bibliographic records for information resources by identifying and recording certain attributes of those information resources and recording information relating to title, authorship, publication and contents. This process can be divided into two parts: descriptive cataloguing  by which information resources are described in sufficient detail to distinguish them from other similar information resources; and subject cataloguing by which the subject content of documents is described. These terms, as defined here, are usually used in a library context and imply adherence to defined library standards, such as cataloguing rules.

Chief access point: the primary attribute by which the document can be identified and located; usually the name of a person, or in some instances of an organisation or the document’s title; one feature of a document which is selected as its identifying access point. See also Main entry

Citation orderin a faceted classification scheme, the order in which the facets are added together

Classification: the process of identifying the subject content of an information resource and of allocating a classification number from a bibliographic classification scheme to that information resource. Classification is closely related to subject indexing

Classification scheme: a logical scheme for the arrangement of knowledge, based on systematic arrangement of entries and concepts into categories

Co-extensive entrythe concept that terms should be co-extensive with subjects covered in the document. For example, a book about marsupials and mammals will require terms for both, not one or the other

Controlled indexing languagean indexing language based on predefined terms which are selected from an authoritative list by the indexer and by the user (who uses them to locate documents about a sought subject). Also known as controlled vocabulary

Copy cataloguing: the process of locating a metadata record created by another library for the document you want to catalogue, then making a copy of that record, usually by downloading that record into the local library information retrieval system. See also Original cataloguing

Corporate body: an organisation or group of persons that is identified by a particular name and that acts, or may act, as an entity; examples are associations, institutions, business firms, nonprofit enterprises, governments, government agencies, religious bodies, local churches, and conferences (AACR2 2002)

Corporate responsibilitythe idea that a group of people (e.g. a corporation) can act together as one entity and be responsible for creating the intellectual content of a document

Derived indexingan indexing language in which the terms are selected from the title, the abstract or some other part of a document, as distinct from being selected from a controlled indexing language; in other words, the indexing language is a subset of the text of the document. Also known as derivative indexing. See also Assigned indexing

Descriptive cataloguingthe process by which documents are described in sufficient detail to distinguish them from other similar documents and to aid in their selection

Descriptor: in indexing, a word or symbol used to designate the subject of a document

Documentused here in its very broadest sense of information-bearing medium. The term has traditionally been applied only to printed media, but in this book should be taken to include non-print media as well; information in digital form is also encompassed by the term

Dublin Core: a metadata schema developed for the description of a broad range of information resources, but in particular of web resources. The schema is comparatively simple, appropriate for author-generated metadata

Enhanced subject access: the addition of subject-indicative terms selected from the contents pages, indexes or other parts of documents to the bibliographic record  

Enumerative classification schemea bibliographic classification scheme which lists (or enumerates) the subjects, loosely grouping together related subjects, or aspects of a subject, together

Exhaustivity: the level of detail we go to in providing subject access; exhaustive subject indexing means that the number of terms selected from the indexing language is large and attempts to cover most or all of the subjects of the document

Expert system: a computer program which uses a knowledge base of facts and rules about a specific area of expertise to perform problem-solving tasks by imitating the processes used by the human experts in that area

Expressive notationa notation used in a bibliographic classification scheme which reflects the structure of the classification: for example, in DDC, 7 is the symbol for fine and decorative arts, 74 for drawing and decorative arts, 746 for textile arts, 746.1 for yarn preparation and weaving, and 746.13 for dyeing yarn

Faceta single concept of a composite subject

Faceted classification schemea bibliographic classification scheme which is based on identification and representation of facets

Format integrationthe process of bringing together all the MARC formats for different media into a single format

Free indexing languagean indexing language in which any term, whether found in the document or not, can be used to describe the subject of a document

General classification schemea bibliographic classification scheme which aims to cover all of documented knowledge, usually developed and maintained for use in large libraries whose collections cover a wide range of subjects, such as academic libraries or public libraries. Examples are the Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC), the Library of Congress Classification (LCC) and the Universal Decimal Classification (UDC)

Hierarchical classification schemea bibliographic classification scheme which groups lists of related concepts into primary and subordinate areas, attempting to emulate the natural order of the subject as closely as possible

Hospitalitythe requirement that notation in a bibliographic classification scheme should be able to accommodate new concepts or subjects by allowing them to be inserted into the notation

Indexa list of information resources with a specified limitation, such as their subject coverage, or their existence in one collection; this definition includes both bibliographies and catalogues as examples of indexes

Indexing: the process of describing an information resource according to specific data elements (such as author, title or subject) in order to provide access to that information resource. The term is used in many different ways, but is here used to encompass more than the term cataloguing: it includes not only the largely library-specific process already noted, but also the processes, often less standardised, which are used to build up the metadata records used by indexing and abstracting services

Indexing languageterms, along with the rules for combining these terms, which are used to represent the subject content of a document. See also Vocabulary

Information centre an organisation which has as its primary function the provision of information

Information retrieval system: any total system in an information centre for performing the tasks associated with the intellectual organisation of information resources so that they can be retrieved when required

Integrated library system: a computer-based library system which provides at least four basic functions (acquisitions, catalogue maintenance, circulation, and the online public access catalogue) and relies on a single database of bibliographic data to perform these functions. See also Library management system

Intellectual access: access to the information contained in an information resource by allowing the seeker of that information to locate a reference to the information resource where it is present. See also Physical access

Inverted order: the order in which subject headings are sometimes used: for example the subject heading Cookery, Singapore is in inverted order, rather than in the direct word order Singapore cookery

Known item searcha catalogue search performed to determine whether or not the library owns a particular book or document. See also Subject search

Library information retrieval system: any total system in an information centre for performing the tasks associated with the intellectual organisation of information resources so that they can be retrieved when required

Literary warrantthe concept that controlled vocabularies should accommodate only those subjects which documents have been produced (or catalogued), rather than subjects which might exist theoretically but about which no documents have yet been produced (or catalogued)

Main entry: the primary attribute by which the document can be identified and located, usually the name of a person, or in some instances of an organisation or the document’s title; in a card catalogue or printed book catalogue, the full version of a bibliographic record. See also Added entry 

MARC (Machine Readable Cataloguing)a family of formats used for the exchange of cataloguing data, particularly among computerised library systems. MARC is the main data communication standard in use in libraries

Metadata:  is a set of elements that describes an information resource; sometimes called bibliographic data

Mixed notationa notation used in a bibliographic classification scheme which incorporates two types of symbols, for instance “ML745” which uses both (Arabic) numerals and letters of the alphabet

Mixed responsibility:  the situation where different persons or bodies have made different contributions to the intellectual and/or artistic content of a work; adaptations or revisions of existing works, or the products of collaboration between an author and an artist, are examples of works of mixed responsibility

Mnemonic notationnotation used in a bibliographic classification scheme which is intended to be easily remembered, such as the repetition of a particular notation throughout the classification to represent the same concept. In DDC, the number 94 usually indicates an Australian aspect of a subject

Natural indexing languagean indexing language in which the terms are selected from the title or the abstract of a document: in other words, the indexing language is a subset of the text of the document

Notationthe set of symbols which represent the arrangement of the bibliographic classification. See also Mixed notation and Pure notation

Original cataloguing: the process of creating a bibliographic record from scratch, using the standards for this purpose such as AACR2. See also Copy cataloguing

Permuted title indexan index to documents generated by computer, based on words in the titles of the documents

Personal authorthe person chiefly responsible for the creation of the intellectual or artistic content of a work (AACR2 2002)

Physical access:  access to an information resource by indicating where it is located (for instance, its location on the library shelf as indicated by a classification number, or its electronic address as indicated by its URL (Uniform Resource Locator) or other resource identifier). See also Intellectual access

Post-coordinationone of the ways in which we use terms from controlled vocabularies to create and search indexes. After the single concepts to describe a subject have been selected, they are used separately in turn to carry out a subject search, then the results are combined after the search. See also Pre-coordination

Precisionthe number of documents in the results of a search which are relevant to that search request

Precision ratiothe number of relevant documents retrieved divided by the total number of documents retrieved, expressed as a percentage; the precision ratio is a measure of how many documents retrieved are relevant

Pre-coordinationrefers to one of the ways in which we use the terms from controlled vocabularies to create and search indexes. After the single concepts to describe a subject have been identified, they are grouped together and then used to carry out a subject search. See also Post-coordination

Pure notationa notation used in a bibliographic classification scheme which uses only one type of symbol, for example all numerals (993.1)

Reader interest classificationa classification scheme based on a limited number of general categories (such as Travel, Leisure, Crime fiction), determined according to reader interests

Recallthe number of relevant documents retrieved from a search

Recall ratiothe number of relevant documents retrieved divided by the total number of relevant documents in the system

Reclassificationthe process of changing the classification notations used on documents from one bibliographic scheme to another, or from one edition of a scheme to another edition

Relevancein information retrieval, having direct bearing on the subject requested

Resource description:  the description of information resources for the purposes of their retrieval and selection. See also Bibliographic organisation

Retrospective conversionthe process of converting into machine-readable versions bibliographic records which have been produced manually, such as on catalogue cards, microfiche or microfilm

Shared responsibilitythe collaboration of two or more persons who performed the same kind of activity such as writing, adapting, or performing in a work

Simplicitythe requirement that notation in a bibliographic classification scheme should be as readily comprehensible as possible

Special classification schemea bibliographic classification scheme which covers a limited field of documented knowledge. Examples include the British Classification of Music, Moys (for law), and Boggs and Lewis (for maps)

Subject cataloguingthat part of the cataloguing process which is concerned with describing and providing access to the subject content of a document

Subject headings lista list of terms, arranged in alphabetical order, which have been selected for their ability to indicate subjects and have been authorised for use to provide subject access to metadata records. Such a list usually covers many subjects and is therefore intended for use in information centres whose collections span a wide range of subjects, such as public, academic and school libraries

Subject searcha catalogue search performed to identify books or documents that deal with a particular subject. See also Known item search

Surrogate records: summaries of information resources which represent those information resources, for example, catalogue records, index entries, metadata

Switching languagea query language, usually a controlled indexing language, into which user queries are converted in order to making cross-database searching more effective

Synthesisthe process of synthesising or combining together facets to build up complex subjects

Thesaurusa list of terms, arranged in alphabetical order, which have been selected for their ability to indicate subjects and have been authorised for use to provide subject access to bibliographic records. Such a list usually covers a limited subject field

Uniform titlea device whose purpose is to collocate (bring together in one place) documents which are variants of the same work

Union cataloguethe union of the catalogues of a group of libraries, such as a catalogue of all parliamentary libraries, or of all libraries in one state, or of all libraries in Australia

Uniquenessthe requirement of notation in a bibliographic classification scheme that no symbol can be used to represent more than one concept, so that no subject or concept can be mistaken for another

Universal bibliographic control (UBC)the concept that all of the world’s published output can be recorded and thus controlled

Vocabulary: terms (usually words or numbers) used to summarise and describe the subject content of a document; these terms form the vocabulary of the indexing language. See also Controlled indexing language and Indexing language

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