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Online Dictionary for Library and Information Science

by Joan M. Reitz
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3-D movie
See: stereoscopic.

3-D view
A two-dimensional image that gives the illusion of perception in three dimensions (depth). See this 3-D view of Grand Canyon, courtesy of NASA. Also spelled 3D view.

8mm film
A gauge of motion picture film, 8 millimeters wide from edge to edge. Introduced for the home market by Kodak in 1932, "Cine Kodak Eight" utilized a special 16mm film that had double the number of perforations along both edges, enabling the filmmaker to run the film through the camera in one direction, then reload and expose the other half of the film, similar to the way an audiocassette is used. After development, the film was slit lengthwise down the center and spliced end to end in the laboratory, fitting four times as many frames in the same amount of film. Regular 8mm has 80 frames per foot and the same size sprocket holes as 16mm film. In 1965, Kodak introduced cartridge-loading Super 8mm that eliminated the need to flip and rethread the film. Super 8 has 74 frames per foot and smaller sprocket holes, leaving more area for the image. It is used by both amateurs and professionals and has developed a following among experimental filmmakers. Many well-known cinematographers and directors began their careers using Super 8. Click here to learn more, courtesy of Wikipedia. See also: 35mm film.

16mm film
A gauge of motion picture film, 16 millimeters wide from edge to edge, with perforations along one edge and space for a sound track along the other (silent 16mm film has perforations on both sides). Introduced by Kodak in 1923 as a safe, nonflammable alternative for the amateur and educational (documentary) markets, 16mm film is the gauge most commonly found in the collections of American archives, libraries, and museums. Used extensively for military training films during World War II, it has 40 frames per foot and one perforation per frame. Sound 16mm film is shot and projected at a speed of 24 frames per second; silent 16mm at 16 frames per second. Introduced in 1971, Super 16mm is a negative-only film with a frame area 40 percent greater than regular 16mm, enlarged to 35mm in processing. Because 16mm cameras and projectors are portable and easy to operate, early enthusiasts formed cine clubs to share their work and exchange information. Many 16mm users switched to videotape in the 1970s when portable video equipment became widely available. The Ann Arbor Film Festival still features 16mm films. Click here to learn more, courtesy of Wikipedia. See also: 8mm film.

24/7 reference
Library reference services that are available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, for example, the QuestionPoint online collaborative reference service from OCLC.

35mm film
A gauge of motion picture film, 35 millimeters wide from edge to edge, with perforations on both sides. Used by Thomas Edison in his Kinetoscope, a personal film viewer patented in 1887 and introduced at the Brooklyn Institute of Arts in 1893, 35mm film was originally made by cutting 70mm Eastman Kodak roll film in half down the center. It eventually became the standard gauge for the theatrical motion picture industry. With the introduction of sound in 1929, the frame was squared to allow space for the sound track, but the more visually pleasing rectangular frame was soon restored by reducing frame size. 35mm sound film has 16 frames per foot, 6 perforations per inch, and is shot and projected at a speed of 24 frames per second. Because 35mm film is expensive to use and the cameras and projectors are too bulky and heavy to be portable, Kodak developed smaller gauge films (16mm and 8mm) for the amateur and educational markets. Click here to learn more about 35mm film, courtesy of Wikipedia.

70mm film
A gauge of high-resolution motion picture film, introduced in the 1950s, which measures 65mm from edge to edge in the camera. On prints intended for projection, 2.5mm is added along each side to accommodate magnetic stripes capable of holding 6 tracks of surround sound. Each frame has 5 perforations on each side, with an aspect ratio of 2.2:1. Well-known theatrical 70mm films include 2001: Space Odyssey, Lawrence of Arabia, and My Fair Lady. IMAX 70mm films, shot on 65mm film with the frames positioned lengthwise, have no sound tracks on the projection print; instead, synchronized digital sound is played separately. Click here to learn more about 70mm film, courtesy of Wikipedia.

See: abstracting and indexing.

See: Anglo-American Cataloging Rules.

See: Anglo-American Cataloging Rules.

AACR2 2002
See: Anglo-American Cataloging Rules.

See: Anglo-American Cataloging Rules.

See: Anglo-American Cataloging Rules.

See: Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries.

See: American Association of Law Libraries.

See: Asian, African, and Middle Eastern Section.

A and B rolls
In motion picture production, a method of cutting negative or positive film in which the first shot is placed on one roll (the "A" roll) with black or blank leader in the corresponding position on a second roll (the "B" roll), the second shot is put on the B roll with black or blank leader in the corresponding position on the A roll, and so on, resulting in a pair of checker-boarded production elements. When the shots are printed in succession onto the next generation stock, the splices between shots are concealed. The technique is also used to create fades and dissolves not done in optical printing. A and B rolls are usually unique.

See: Association of American Publishers.

See: American Antiquarian Society.

See: American Association of School Librarians.

See: Art & Architecture Thesaurus.

See: American Association of University Professors and Association of American University Presses.

See: American Booksellers Association.

See: Antiquarian Booksellers Association of America.

abandoned property law
A statute of particular interest to archivists, describing the procedures by which an individual or organization may obtain clear, legal title to material it holds but does not own. In the United States, federal statutory law does not address abandoned property; such statutes are enacted state by state, with less than half of the 50 states having taken the step. Click here to learn about New Hampshire's Abandoned Property Law, courtesy of the New Hampshire State Treasurer. Synonymous with unclaimed property law.

abandonment of copyright
Voluntary relinquishment of legal rights in a work by the copyright holder's explicit dedication of the work to the public domain, at time of creation or subsequently.

AB Bookman's Weekly
A trade publication used mainly by antiquarian booksellers to locate rare, out of print, and difficult to find titles, AB Bookman's Weekly began as a section of Publishers Weekly under the title Antiquarian Bookman. In 1948 it became an independent weekly of the same title published by Bowker. Publication under the title AB Bookman's Weekly began in 1967 and ceased in 1999. Publishers Weekly tried to revive it in 2004 as an online magazine but failed.

abbreviated entry
A shortened form of a bibliographic entry, usually providing name of author, title, and publication date.

A shortened form of a word or phrase used for brevity in place of the whole, consisting of the first letter, or the first few letters, followed by a period (full stop), for example, assoc. for association or P.O. for post office. Some terms have more than one abbreviation (v. or vol. for volume). Also used as an umbrella term for any shortened form of a word or phrase not an acronym, initialism, or contraction, for example, the postal code CT for Connecticut. The rules governing the use of abbreviations in library catalog entries are given in Appendix B of AACR2. Abbreviated abbr.

In medieval manuscripts, abbreviations were often used to save time and space, and readers of the time would have been familiar with them. Michelle Brown notes in Understanding Illuminated Manuscripts (Getty Museum/British Library, 1994) that Irish scribes relied on them extensively in copying pocket-size Gospel books used for study.

ABC book
See: abecedary and alphabet book.

A leading online market place for used, rare, and out of print books, AbeBooks provides a list of over 40 million titles available from a network of over 10,000 booksellers. The company provides additional services to librarians, such as consolidated billing and purchase orders. Click here to connect to the AbeBooks.com homepage. See also: Alibris.

See: abecedary.

See: acrostic.

A book containing the letters of the alphabet and basic rules of spelling and grammar, used in Europe as a primer before the invention of the printing press. Early printed examples (sometimes in the form of a broadsheet) displayed the alphabet in uppercase and lowercase letters in both roman and gothic type, with separate lists of vowels, dipthongs, and consonants. By 1700, some ABC books included children's rhymes. Synonymous with abecedarium (plural: abecedarii). See also: horn book.

aberrant copy
A copy of a book containing obvious printing and/or binding errors that are more serious than minor defects.

aberrant date
In archives, a date that falls outside the chronological sequence of dates pertaining to the majority of the documents in the record unit described (Richard Pearce-Moses, A Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology, Society of American Archives).

See: Association des Bibliothécaires Français.

The totality of subjects explicitly or implicitly addressed in the text of a document, including but not limited to the meaning(s) of the title, the stated and unstated intentions of the author, and the ways in which the information may be used by readers. Levels of specificity must be considered in ascertaining the subject(s) of a work. In the case of the hypothetical title The Japanese Teamwork Approach to Improving High School Effectiveness, is the work about:

1. education?
2. educational effectiveness?
3. high school effectiveness?
4. teamwork?
5. a Japanese approach to teamwork?

As a general rule, catalogers and indexers assign the most specific subject headings that describe the significant content of the item. In a post-coordinate indexing system such as the one used in the ERIC database, the descriptors "Educational effectiveness," "High schools," "Japan," and "Teamwork" would probably be assigned to the example given above, but in a pre-coordinate system, such as the Library of Congress Subject Headings list, the appropriate headings might be "High schools--Japan," "Teacher effectiveness--Japan," and "Teaching teams--Japan." See also: summarization.

above the fold
The printed half of a broadsheet newspaper that appears higher on the page than the horizontal fold. Articles placed near the top have greater prominence because most languages are read from top to bottom of the writing surface.

See: American Book Prices Current.

See: abridgment.

Abridged Decimal Classification (ADC)
A logical truncation of the notational and structural hierarchy of the full edition of Dewey Decimal Classification, developed for general collections of 20,000 titles or less. Click here for more information, courtesy of OCLC.

A shortened version or edition of a written work that preserves the overall meaning and manner of presentation of the original but omits the less important passages of text and usually any illustrations, notes, and appendices. Often prepared by a person other than the original author or editor, an abridged edition is generally intended for readers unlikely to purchase the unabridged version because of its length, complexity, or price (example: The New Shorter Oxford English Dictionary). Also spelled abridgement. Abbreviated abr. Synonymous with condensation. Compare with simplified edition. See also: abstract, brief, digest, epitome, summary, and synopsis.

The failure of an employee to report for work, usually due to illness, accident, family responsibilities, or personal business. A persistently high rate of absenteeism may be a sign of low morale among the staff of a library or library system. See also: burnout.

absolute humidity
See: humidity.

absorbed title
See: absorption.

The capacity of paper to absorb and retain moisture, which varies with type of paper and is of particular importance in printing processes that use liquid ink. See also: water-damaged.

The incorporation of one serial by another. The note Absorbed: followed by the title of the assimilated serial is added to the bibliographic record representing the assimilating publication, and the corresponding note Absorbed by: followed by the title of the assimilating serial is added to the record for the assimilated publication. The absorbed title usually assumes the title and numbering of the assimilating publication. Compare with merger.

A brief, objective representation of the essential content of a book, article, speech, report, dissertation, patent, standard, or other work, presenting the main points in the same order as the original but having no independent literary value. A well-prepared abstract enables the reader to 1) quickly identify the basic content of the document, 2) determine its relevance to their interests, and 3) decide whether it is worth their time to read the entire document. An abstract can be informative, indicative, critical, or written from a particular point of view (slanted). Examples of the various types of abstracts can be seen in the Appendix of the ANSI/NISO Z39.14 Guidelines for Abstracts.

Length depends on the type of document abstracted and the intended use of the abstract. As a general rule, abstracts of long documents, such as monographs and theses, are limited to a single page (about 300 words); abstracts of papers, articles, and portions of monographs are no longer than 250 words; abstracts of notes and other brief communications are limited to 100 words; and abstracts of very short documents, such as editorials and letters to the editor, are about 30 words long. In a scholarly journal article, the abstract should appear on the first page, following the title and name(s) of author(s) and preceding the text. In a separately published document, the abstract should be placed between the title page and the text. In an entry in a printed indexing and abstracting service or bibliographic database, the abstract accompanies the citation. Because the abstract is a searchable field in most bibliographic databases, attention must be paid by the abstractor to the keywords included in it. Authorship of an abstract can be unattributed or indicated by name or initials. An author-supplied abstract is usually written by the author of the work abstracted. Compare with summary. See also: abstracting journal, author abstract, and structured abstract.

The preparation of a brief, objective statement (abstract) of the content of a written work to enable the researcher to quickly determine whether reading the entire text might satisfy the specific information need. Abstracting is usually limited to the literature of a specific discipline or group of related disciplines and is performed by an individual or commercial entity, such as an indexing and abstracting service, that provides abstracts regularly to a list of subscribers.

abstracting and indexing (A&I)
A category of database that provides bibliographic citations and abstracts of the literature of a discipline or subject area, as distinct from a retrieval service that provides information sources in full-text.

abstracting journal
A journal that specializes in providing summaries (called abstracts) of articles and other documents published within the scope of a specific academic discipline or field of study (example: Peace Research Abstracts Journal). Synonymous with abstract journal. Compare with abstracting service.

abstracting service
A commercial indexing service that provides both a citation and a brief summary or abstract of the content of each document indexed (example: Information Science & Technology Abstracts). Numbered consecutively in order of addition, entries are issued serially in print, usually in monthly or quarterly supplements, or in a regularly updated bibliographic database available by subscription. Abstracting services can be comprehensive or selective within a specific academic discipline or subdiscipline. Compare with abstracting journal.

abstract journal
See: abstracting journal.

abstract live action
In moving images, a work that fragments or otherwise presents live objects in a manner that renders them non-representational (example: Text of Light [1974] by Stan Brakhage).

See: Academy of Certified Archivists and Association of Canadian Archivists.

See: Association of Canadian Map Libraries and Archives.

academic freedom
The principle that faculty members employed at institutions of higher education (including librarians with faculty status) should remain free to express their views and teach in the manner of their own choosing, without pressure or interference from administration, government, or any outside organization.

academic library
A library that is an integral part of a college, university, or other institution of postsecondary education, administered to meet the information and research needs of its students, faculty, and staff. In the United States, the professional association for academic libraries and librarians is the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), which publishes Standards for Libraries in Higher Education. For more information on academic libraries in the United States, see Academic Libraries: 2004, a report published in November 2006 by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). Libweb provides a list of links to academic libraries in the United States by region and state. Compare with research library. See also: college library, departmental library, graduate library, undergraduate library, and university library.

academic press
See: university press.

academic status
Recognition given by an institution of higher education that the librarians in its employ are considered members of the teaching or research staff but are not entitled to ranks, titles, rights, and benefits equivalent to those of faculty. The Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) has published Guidelines for Academic Status for College and University Librarians (January 2007). Compare with faculty status.

Academy aperture
See: Academy format.

Academy Award
An award given annually in the United States by the voting membership of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for excellence in motion picture performance and production. To qualify, a film must have opened in Los Angeles during the preceding calendar year. Nominees are announced in advance and the ceremony, hosted by a celebrity, is televised nationally. Awards are given in seven major categories: best picture (feature length), best director, best actor, best actress, best supporting actor, best supporting actress, and best foreign-language film. Awards are also given for animated and short films. Also called an "Oscar" for the nickname given to the golden trophy statuette received by each winner. See HowStuffWorks for more information about the Academy Awards. The Internet Movie Database provides a summary of past award winners. Click here to connect to the official Academy Awards Web site.

academy file
In archives, a series, often found in Congressional records, that includes applications for admission to one of the United States service academies, often accompanied by letters of recommendation from appropriate members of Congress. The academies include the Military Academy at West Point, the Naval Academy at Annapolis, the Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs, the Coast Guard Academy at Groton, and the Merchant Marine Academy at King's Point.

Academy format
The moving image format chosen by representatives of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, American Society of Cinematographers (ASC), Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE), and American Projection Society to be the standard for 35mm film. Academy format for silent film had an aspect ratio of 4:3 or 1.33:1 (width to height of image). When sound film was introduced, the format changed to 1.37:1, which remained the international standard for about 25 years until widescreen was introduced (the image ratio remained 1.33:1 with an added area on one side for the sound track). Synonymous with Academy aperture.

Academy of Certified Archivists (ACA)
Founded in 1989 at the annual meeting of the Society of American Archivists, ACA is an independent, nonprofit professional organization that certifies individuals who meet specific standards and requirements for archival education, knowledge, and experience. To become a Certified Archivist, applicants must pass an examination given annually in conjunction with the annual meeting of the SAA and simultaneously at several announced sites and petitioned sites in the United States and Canada. Click here to connect to the ACA homepage.

A stylized representation of the elegantly scalloped leaf-form of Acanthus spinosus, a species of Mediterranean herbaceous plant with thick, fleshy leaves, used in Antiquity to ornament Corinthian capitals and later as a decorative motif in medieval art, especially in the borders and initial letters of illuminated manuscripts, often painted in unrealistic colors (red, yellow, blue, purple) in combination with small images of flowers, birds, insects, and animals. Click here to see acanthus borders in a 15th-century Flemish Book of Hours, courtesy of Special Collections, Glasgow University Library, (Sp Coll MS Euing 3). Another variation on the style can be seen in this 15th-century version of Saint George and the Dragon (Getty Museum, MS 2). Compare with rinceaux.

accelerated aging test
A laboratory procedure used by archivists and special collections librarians to estimate the rate at which a material (film, paper, ink, etc.) will deteriorate in storage, to facilitate prediction of its life expectancy. According to the Society of American Archivists, such tests are often based on the Arrhenius function, which assumes that materials age in a predictable manner relative to temperature. However, such tests may be of limited usefulness because degree of permanence is influenced by conditions of storage, which vary widely. Also, empirical verification of the accuracy of accelerated aging tests requires experiments conducted over a number of years.

acceptable use policy (AUP)
Guidelines established by a library or library system concerning the manner in which its computer systems and equipment may be used by patrons and staff; for example, most public and academic libraries prohibit the use of library computers for private commercial or unlawful activities. In most libraries, a printed copy of acceptable use policy is posted near the workstations to which restrictions apply. Some libraries make their policy statement available electronically at log on, and users may be required assent by clicking on a small box or icon before access is granted. Synonymous with Internet use policy.

The right of entry to a library or its collections. All public libraries and most academic libraries in the United States are open to the general public, but access to certain areas such as closed stacks, rare books, and special collections may be restricted. In a more general sense, the right or opportunity to use a resource that may not be openly and freely available to everyone. See also: accessibility.

In computing, the privilege of using a computer system or online resource, usually controlled by the issuance of access codes to authorized users. In a more general sense, the ability of a user to reach data stored on a computer or computer system. See also: open access and perpetual access.

access code
An identification code, such as a username, password, or PIN, which a user must enter correctly to gain access to a computer system or network. In most proprietary systems, access codes are tightly controlled to exclude unauthorized users. Synonymous with authorization code.

access copy
A copy of a motion picture on film, videotape, DVD, or some other medium, used for public service (viewing, circulation, etc.), as opposed to a copy used for preservation or a master used for duplication. Similarly, a copy of a photograph or other document made in any format for normal daily use, to protect the original from wear and accidental damage. Synonymous with use copy.

Also, a digital object, typically a graphic image, scaled down from a high quality original to a lower quality (often smaller) version to facilitate transmission over networks of low bandwidth.

The ease with which a person may enter a library, gain access to its online systems, use its resources, and obtain needed information regardless of format. In a more general sense, the quality of being able to be located and used by a person. In the Web environment, the quality of being usable by everyone regardless of disability. See the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI).

In information storage and retrieval, the manner in which a computer system retrieves records from a file, which usually depends on the method of their arrangement in or on the storage medium.

To record in an accession list the addition of a bibliographic item to a library collection, whether acquired by purchase or exchange or as a gift. In automated libraries, the addition is usually recorded by enhancing a brief order record that is expanded in cataloging to become the full bibliographic record entered permanently in the catalog. Also refers to the material added. The process of making additions to a collection is known as accessions. The opposite of deaccession. Compare with acquisitions. See also: accession number and accession record.

In archives, the formal act of accepting and documenting the receipt of records taken into custody, part of the process of establishing physical and intellectual control over them. In the case of donated items, a deed of gift may be required to transfer legal title.

accession list
See: accession record.

accession number
A unique number assigned to a bibliographic item in the order in which it is added to a library collection, recorded in an accession record maintained by the technical services department. Most libraries assign accession numbers in continuous numerical sequence, but some use a code system to indicate type of material and/or year of accession in addition to order of accession. See also: Library of Congress Control Number and OCLC control number.

accession order
The arrangement of books or other documents on shelves in the chronological and numerical order of their addition to a specific category or class, as opposed to an arrangement based entirely on a classification system.

accession record
A list of the bibliographic items added to a library collection in the order of their addition. Normally such a list includes the accession number, brief bibliographic identification, source, and price paid for each item. Synonymous with accession catalog, accession list, and accession register.

See: accession.

access level record
A standard catalog record, developed by the CONSER Program, that applies to all serials formats (digital as well as print), replacing existing multiple records and reducing serials cataloging costs by requiring in serials records only elements necessary to meet FRBR user tasks. The emphasis is on access points rather than elaborate and often redundant description (click here to learn more). The Library of Congress plans to implement access level MARC/AACR records (click here for more information).

access point
A unit of information in a bibliographic record under which a person may search for and identify items listed in the library catalog or bibliographic database. Access points have traditionally included the main entry, added entries, subject headings, classification or call number, and codes such as the standard number, but with machine-readable cataloging, almost any portion of the catalog record (name of publisher, type of material, etc.) can serve as an access point. In the MARC record, most access points are found in the following fields (with XX in the range of 00-99):

1XX - Main entries
4XX - Series statements
6XX - Subject headings
7XX - Added entries other than subject or series
8XX - Series added entries

In a more general sense, any unique data element that serves as a point of entry to an organized file of information. In files indexed with controlled vocabulary, an access point may be a preferred or nonpreferred term.

Also refers to a physical location where wireless access is available.

access policy
A formal written statement issued by the person(s) or body responsible for managing archives or special collections, specifying which materials are available for access and by whom, including any conditions or restrictions on use, usually posted or distributed by some method to users.

access services
The provision of access to a library's resources and collections, which includes the circulation of materials (general circulation, reserves, interlibrary loan, document delivery), reshelving, stack maintenance, security, and signage. Large libraries employ an access services librarian to manage these activities.

access time
The amount of time a computer takes to retrieve requested data from an electronic storage medium (hard drive, CD-ROM, remote server) to a user who follows correct procedures. In online retrieval, speed of Internet connection is an important factor, but even with a fast connection, access time may be slower during periods of peak use.

Access to Learning Award
An annual award sponsored by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and administered by the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR), given to a library, library agency, or comparable organization outside the United States for efforts to expand free public access to information, computers, and the Internet for all people through an existing innovative program. The winner receives US$1 million to expand its services. Applications are reviewed by an international advisory committee of librarians and information technology experts who make the final selection. The award is presented at the World Library and Information Congress, the annual meeting of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA). Click here to learn more about the Access to Learning Award.

The process of allowing archival records and other materials to adapt to environmental changes (in temperature, humidity, etc.), especially when removed from cold storage for use at room temperature. Because materials can take hours to adapt to normal room temperature, the Society of American Archivists does not recommend cold storage as a practical solution for preserving frequently consulted items. Click here to learn about acclimatization of film, courtesy of the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia. Also spelled acclimatisation.

accompanying material
Related but physically distinct material issued with an item, for example, a floppy disk, CD-ROM, slide set, answer book, teacher's manual, atlas, or portfolio of prints or plates, intended by the publisher to be used and stored with it, often in a pocket inside the cover or loose inside the container. In AACR2, the presence of accompanying material is indicated in the physical description area of the bibliographic record. See also: dashed-on entry.

accordion fold
A method of folding a piece of paper (or several pieces pasted together edge to edge) in which each successive fold is parallel with, but in the opposite direction to, the preceding one. Click here to see a 14th-century Korean accordion-style manuscript of the Lotus Sutra on indigo-dyed mulberry paper (Metropolitan Museum of Art) and here to view an untitled early 19th-century example from Nepal (Library of Congress). See also this early 20th-century Thai manuscript in a lacquered cover (Cornell University Library). Synonymous with fan fold and z-fold. See also: Chinese style and concertina.

The extent to which persons in government and the workplace are held answerable for their conduct in office and for the quality of their performance of assigned duties, particularly when incompetence, dereliction, or malfeasance is at issue. See also: performance evaluation.

In the management of academic libraries, the use of assessment data to evaluate a library's effectiveness in achieving its educational mission, as a basis for continual improvement. See also: LibQUAL+ and Project SAILS.

account book
A blankbook, ruled or unruled, in which the details of transactions, usually financial, are recorded, often in the form of a ledger with columns tallied at the end of each day, week, month, or year to show the profitability of the enterprise. Account books can be a valuable source of historical information. Click here to see the manuscript account book of an 18th-century American tradesman, courtesy of the American Philosophical Society, and here to see a page from a 19th-century household account book (National Museum of American History). Compare with cash book.

accounts binding
See: stationery binding.

The voluntary nongovernmental evaluation process by which an educational or service organization regularly establishes that its programs, or the institution as a whole (or one of its schools or units), meets pre-established standards of quality and integrity. In higher education, accreditation is a collegial process based on self-assessment and peer evaluation for the improvement of academic quality and public accountability. In the United States, institutions of higher learning are evaluated by regional accrediting bodies. Evaluation of academic libraries is included in the institutional process. Graduate programs of library and information science are evaluated by the Committee on Accreditation (COA) of the American Library Association (ALA). Formal evaluation of individual competence is called certification. See also: accredited program and credential.

accreditation action
One of seven possible decisions by the Committee on Accreditation (COA) of the American Library Association (ALA) affecting the accreditation status of a library and information studies program under the Standards for Accreditation of Master's Programs in Library and Information Studies (2008), conveyed to the dean of the program and to the institution's chief executive officer in a formal Decision Document. The actions are:

Precandidacy granted - the program�s and institution�s commitment to achieving ALA accreditation is accepted
Candidacy granted - the program is ready to begin the two-year process culminating in the Program Presentation document, comprehensive review, and COA accreditation decision
Initially accredited - the program is accredited for the first time
Accreditation continued - the program continues to demonstrate conformity to ALA Standards (synonymous with Accredited)
Conditionally accredited - the program needs significant and immediate improvement to maintain conformity to ALA Standards
Accreditation withdrawn - the program is no longer accredited by the ALA, as of the date specified by the COA (an appeal may be filed)
Initial accreditation denied - the program or institution may file an appeal

The Committee on Accreditation may withdraw accreditation for serious lack of conformity to the Standards, for failure to participate in the evaluation process, or for not meeting financial obligations to the COA.

accredited library school
See: accredited program.

accredited program
In the United States, a professional degree program in library and information science, regularly evaluated by the Committee on Accreditation (COA) of the American Library Association (ALA) and found to meet or exceed pre-established standards of quality, as distinct from an approved program recognized or certified by a state board or educational agency as meeting its standards. Some approved programs are also ALA-accredited. See also: accreditation action and retroactive period of accreditation.

In library collection development, the policy of acquiring as much of the published literature as possible on a subject, or in an academic discipline, usually in support of primary research in the field. The collections of large academic and research libraries typically reflect this priority, in contrast to public libraries, where weeding is done regularly on the basis of usage, and special libraries operating under constraints that require maintenance of the collection in a steady state. In archives, the accumulation of recurring records is often governed by a disposition schedule.

The quality of correctness as to fact and of precision as to detail in information resources and in the delivery of information services. In libraries, it is essential that the resources used by librarians to provide reference service be free of error. Accuracy is also an important criterion in judging the reliability of information provided on the Internet. The accuracy of a statement is verified by consulting other sources that provide the same information. The opposite of inaccuracy (the quality of being incorrect or mistaken).

In cartography, a measure of the degree to which the coordinates of points shown on a map conform to actual survey coordinates. In a broader sense, the degree to which a value or set of values, either measured or calculated, approximates a specific standard for that value (Cartographic Materials; A Manual of Interpretation for AACR2, 2002 Revision, ALA, 2003).

acetate decay
The chemical deterioration of film that has an acetate plastic base, an autocatalytic process caused by moisture, heat, and high relative humidity. According to The Film Preservation Guide (National Film Preservation Foundation, 2004), decay occurs in five stages, accelerating at it progresses: (1) the film releases acetic acid, emitting a characteristic vinegar odor; (2) the film base begins to shrink, curling and warping along both dimensions (length and width); (3) the film loses flexibility; (4) the emulsion begins to crack (see crazing) and flake off; and (5) a white powder appears along the edges and surface of the film. Acetate decay cannot be reversed, only slowed by cold storage. The Image Permanence Institute (IPI) recommends freezing film in an advanced state of decay until the content can be evaluated for transfer to new film stock or copying in another medium. Synonymous with vinegar syndrome. Compare with nitrate decay. See also: A-D strip and molecular sieve.

acetate film
See: cellulose acetate.

acid barrier
A sheet of acid-free or buffered paper, or polyester film, placed loose between an acidic component of a book, such as a bookplate, and the adjacent leaf or board to prevent acid migration.

Materials with a pH value of 7.0 (neutral) or higher (alkaline), preferred in printing and binding to prevent deterioration caused by acid over time. Acid-free papers are often buffered to counteract acids that may develop with age as a result of bleaching and sizing or be introduced through acid migration or atmospheric pollution. Synonymous with nonacidic.

acid-free paper
Paper that has a neutral or alkaline pH level (7.0 or higher) at the time of manufacture, commonly used for fine art prints, limited edition printing, and photo albums, and in the preservation of library materials. Lignin contained in wood pulp is the primary source of acid in paper and board. Acid-free paper is not necessarily permanent, but permanent papers are acid-free. See also: buffering.

Substances that have a pH value less than 7.0 (neutral). The main source of acid in paper products is lignin contained in wood used for pulp. Because acid causes the paper and board used in printing and binding to deteriorate over time, lignin is removed in all but the lowest-grade papers. A buffer such as calcium carbonate or magnesium carbonate may be added in papermaking to neutralize acids that develop or are introduced after the manufacture of paper. The opposite of alkaline. Compare with acid-free.

acid migration
The movement of acid from a material containing acid to one that is less acidic, pH neutral, or alkaline. The process can occur through direct contact or vapor transfer. One of the most common problems in document preservation is the migration of acid from the boards, endpapers, or paper covers of a book to the less acidic paper of the text block (or vice versa). Acid can also migrate from bookplates, inserts, tissues used in interleaving, and labels that are not acid-free. The result may be discoloration and eventual embrittlement (click here to see an example of acid migration from a newspaper clipping to the pages of a book, courtesy of the MIT Libraries). The process can be arrested by removing the contaminating material and subjecting the sheet(s) or volume to deacidification. Synonymous with acid transfer. See also: buffered paper.

acid paper
Paper that has a pH value less than 7.0 (neutral). The primary source of acid in paper is lignin, an organic substance contained in untreated wood pulp, but acid can also develop from the addition of certain types of size or from residual chlorine used in bleaching. It can also be introduced by acid migration or atmospheric pollution (sulfur dioxide). Because acidity weakens the cellulose in plant fiber, it can cause paper, board, and cloth to yellow and become brittle over time, making it an important factor in the preservation of printed materials. To ensure durability, publishers are encouraged to use acid-free permanent paper in printing trade books. Buffering helps neutralize acids that develop after manufacture. Acid can be removed from fiber-based materials by an expensive process called deacidification. The opposite of acid-free-paper.

acid transfer
See: acid migration.

The section of the front matter of a book in which the author gives formal recognition to the contributions others have made to the work. The acknowledgments usually follow the preface or foreword and precede the introduction. Some authors include their acknowledgments in the preface. Also spelled acknowledgements. Compare with dedication.

See: Association of Christian Librarians.

See: Association of Canadian Map Libraries and Archives.

acoustic hood
A soundproof covering or enclosure designed to be placed over a device such as a public telephone, photocopier, or computer printer, to reduce noise when it is in use (see this example).

acoustic recording
An early method of recording music by mechanical means (without electrical amplification) in which the master recording was made by grouping performers around a large metal acoustic horn, similar to the horn on a phonograph record player but larger (see this example). The horn channeled sound (acoustic energy) from voices and/or musical instruments through a diaphragm, causing it to vibrate. The vibration moved a stylus in a mechanical cutting lathe (usually located in another room), directly inscribing the signal as a modulated groove in the surface of a master cylinder or wax disc. Acoustic recording was replaced by electric recording in the early 1930s, following the invention and commercial introduction of the microphone, electric amplifier, mixing desk, and speaker. Electrical recording captures a wider range of frequencies (bass and treble) than acoustic recording. Some early acoustic recordings have been rereleased on compact disc (CD).

See: Association of Canadian Publishers.

acquisition number
A unique number used by the acquisitions department of a library to identify a specific bibliographic item on a purchase order. Some libraries use a standard number such as the ISBN (International Standard Book Number) or ISSN (International Standard Serial Number) as the acquisition number.

The process of selecting, ordering, and receiving materials for library or archival collections by purchase, exchange, or gift, which may include budgeting and negotiating with outside agencies, such as publishers, dealers, and vendors, to obtain resources to meet the needs of the institution's clientele in the most economical and expeditious manner.

Also refers to the department within a library responsible for selecting, ordering, and receiving new materials and for maintaining accurate records of such transactions, usually managed by an acquisitions librarian. In small libraries, the acquisitions librarian may also be responsible for collection development, but in most public and academic libraries, this responsibility is shared by all the librarians who have an active interest in collection building, usually on the basis of expertise and subject specialization. For a more detailed description of the responsibilities entailed in acquisitions, please see the entry by Liz Chapman in the International Encyclopedia of Information and Library Science (Routledge, 2003). Click here to connect to AcqWeb, an online resource for acquisitions and collection development librarians. Compare with accession. See also: Acquisitions Section.

Acquisitions Section (AS)
Created in 1991, AS is the section of the Association for Library Collections and Technical Services (ALCTS) within the American Library Association (ALA) charged with (1) promoting the effective acquisition of information resources in all formats, through purchase, lease, and other methods, in all types of institutions; (2) developing sound ethical, fiscal, and legal policies and procedures in acquisitions management, including relationships with suppliers; and (3) assessing and advancing awareness of the organization and role of the acquisitions function within the library and in relationships with other functional areas (purchasing, accounting, collection management, etc.). Click here to connect to the AS homepage.

See: Association of College and Research Libraries.

See: Adobe Acrobat.

A new name or word (neologism) that is pronounceable and hence memorable, coined from the first or first few letters or parts of a phrase or compound term (example: ERIC for Educational Resources Information Center). Acronym Finder(AF) is an example of an online acronym dictionary. Compare with abbreviation and initialism. See also: anacronym.

A verse or list of words composed in such a way that certain letters of each line (usually the first and/or last), when read in order of appearance, spell a word, phrase, or sentence. An abecedarius is an acrostic in which the pattern consists of the letters of the alphabet in traditional order. An acrostic can be single, double, or triple, depending on how many words in each line are composed in this way. As a matter of policy, newspaper and magazine editors routinely check verses for acrostics prior to publication to avoid embarrassment. The following well-known example is an all-around acrostic in Latin:


One of the major divisions in the action of a play, usually marked by the dropping of the curtain and followed by an intermission. In modern drama, most plays are divided into three acts, which may be further subdivided into scenes. See also: one-act play.

Also refers to a piece of legislation (a bill) after it has been passed into law (example: Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998). Click here to view an early American printing of the Stamp Act of 1765, courtesty of the Lilly Library at Indiana University.

Acta Diurna
A daily gazette published in ancient Rome from the period of the late Republic onward, devoted primarily to matters of state (official events, public speeches, legal proceedings, public building projects, major military actions) and announcements of births, marriages, and deaths. It also contained news of unusual occurrences (earthquakes, strange accidents, portents) and information about the private lives of prominent persons (scandals, divorces, lawsuits). The text was posted on public buildings, and copies were made for wealthy Romans living in the city and provinces or away temporarily on public business. The actuarii responsible for gathering the news were sometimes misled by persons intent on manipulating commodity markets and political events for personal gain. Surviving fragments, preserved in the writings of Petronius, read very much like a modern newspaper.

acting edition
An edition of a play intended for the use of actors and others directly involved in theater production, which includes fuller stage directions (entrances, exits, stage properties, etc.) than one intended for reading, usually published in limp paper covers and priced lower than other editions of the work. Compare with script.

active records
Records required by an agency or individual to function effectively on a daily basis, usually kept close at hand, organized to render them readily accessible. Synonymous with current records. The opposite of inactive records. See also: intermediate records.

active relation
See: semantic relation.

activity book
A book designed to engage the user in a pursuit other than (or in addition to) reading, for example, an instruction manual for science or craft projects, or a volume containing puzzles or word games. Some children's activity books are oversize. Libraries select judiciously, avoiding formats that require the reader to fill in the blanks or otherwise alter the physical state of the item. When an activity book is part of a kit, its presence is indicated in the physical description area of the bibliographic record.

activity card
A card or set of cards printed with symbols, words, numerals, and/or pictures intended for use by an individual or group in performing a specific action (or set of actions) or in following a pursuit. Compare with flash card. See also: game and kit.

activity log
A written record of things done during a given period of time, usually listed in the order accomplished, often used in analyzing time management.

A nonfiction motion picture (documentary), usually of very short length, made prior to 1910 to demonstrate the technological advance of moving images over still photography. Most examples capture familiar scenes of everyday life (people, places, and events) with authenticity but, in some instances, a bit of manipulation. Exotic novelties borrowed from 19th-century commercial photography were also popular. The earliest public venues were nickelodeons--peep show parlors with machines that played short film loops. By the turn of the century, "movies" were being shown in store-front theaters and traveling carnivals. During the first decade of the 20th century, when they also began to be projected in vaudeville and burlesque theaters, the growing popularity of the fiction film eclipsed the actuality, which peaked in 1903. Click here to learn more about actualities and view examples, courtesy of the American Memory project of the Library of Congress.

See: Americans with Disabilities Act.

A work that has been edited or rewritten, in part or in its entirety, for a new use, audience, or purpose. Also, a work converted to another literary form or artistic medium to serve a different or related purpose, while retaining as much of the action, characters, language, and tone of the original as possible, for example, a novel or story adapted for performance on the stage (see these examples), a play adapted for the motion picture screen, or an engraving based on a painting. In AACR2, adaptations of texts are cataloged under the name of the adapter, or under the title if the adapter is unknown, with a name-title added entry for the original work. Abbreviated adapt.

In music, a work that is a distinct alteration of another musical work (for example, a free transcription), or that paraphrases parts of various works or imitates the style of another composer, or that is somehow based on another musical work (AACR2). Cataloging follows the practice used for texts. See also: arrangement.

adaptive technology
Systems, devices, and software specifically designed to make library materials and services more accessible to people with physical and/or cognitive disabilities, including large print books, closed captioned videorecordings, Braille signage, voice amplification devices, screen magnification and screen reading software, voice recognition software, etc. Some libraries have found focus groups helpful in selecting adaptive technologies. Synonymous with assistive technology. See also: alt tag.

See: Abridged Decimal Classification.

added charge
A further charge made by a publisher or vendor against a subscriber's account after initial payment has been received, usually to cover (1) an increase in the subscription price that occurs after billing, before the order is processed; (2) publication of additional volumes; or (3) fluctuations in currency exchange rates. The charge is made in the form of a supplemental invoice.

added copy
A copy of an item already owned by a library, added to the collection usually when demand warrants. Compare with duplicate.

added edition
An edition of a work added to a library collection, which is not the same as editions of the same title already owned by the library.

added entry
A secondary entry, additional to the main entry, usually under a heading for a joint author, illustrator, translator, series, or subject, by which an item is represented in a library catalog (AACR2). See also: name-title added entry and tracings.

added title page
A title page preceding or following the one used by the cataloger as the chief source of information in creating the bibliographic description of an item. It may be more general, as in a series title page, or of equivalent generality, as in a title page in another language (AACR2).

Brief printed matter, less extensive than a supplement or appendix, included in a book or other publication after the work has been typeset because it is considered essential to the meaning or completeness of the text, usually printed separately on a slip of paper tipped in at the beginning or end of the text. Plural: addenda. Compare with errata.

additional volume
An extra volume issued by the publisher of a serial, not included in the original publication schedule for the title, for which an added charge may be made against the customer's account, on a supplemental invoice.

add note
A brief note in the Dewey Decimal Classification schedules instructing the cataloger to append to a given base number one or more numerals found elsewhere in the classification in order to build a class number. For example, the instruction to "add to base number 027.1 (private and family libraries) notation from 1-9 from Table 2, e.g., family libraries in the United Kingdom 027.141."

In computing, a character or set of characters used to identify a specific location in main memory or peripheral storage, usually for the purpose of accessing stored data. See also: Internet address.

Also, a written or spoken speech, especially a formal discourse in which the speaker's comments on an important issue or event are directed to a known audience (examples: President George Washington's first Inaugural Address and Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address). A funeral address is a tribute delivered, sometimes by a close associate or admirer, at the formal ceremony honoring a person after death. The address at Lincoln's burial was delivered by the Reverend Matthew Simpson.

A substance applied to a material to make it stick to another surface by chemical or mechanical action. Gummed adhesives require moisture to be effective. Solid at room temperatures, hot-melt adhesives liquefy when heated and set up quickly as they cool. Some types of adhesive are pressure-sensitive. Various kinds of adhesives are used extensively in binding and by libraries in technical processing. In document conservation, adhesives are often selected for their reversibility. See also: adhesive binding, glair, glue, paste, and polyvinyl acetate.

adhesive binding
A generic term for binding methods in which the leaves are held together by a strong adhesive applied directly to the back of the text block, usually done after the binding edge is milled but sometimes after the sections are sewn. The most commonly used adhesives are animal glues, hot-melts, and polyvinyl acetate (PVA). Click here to see an example of adhesive binding. Synonymous with threadless binding and unsewn binding. Compare with non-adhesive binding. See also: caoutchouc binding, double-fan adhesive binding, notched binding, Otabind, perfect binding, and two-shot binding.

adhesive tape
Tape manufactured with a sticky backing. It should be avoided when mending torn paper because the adhesives used on most brands stain with age, and it can be difficult to remove, causing permanent damage to library materials (see this example).

ad hoc
Latin for "to this," used to indicate that something was created or exists for the particular purpose in view at the moment. Also refers to something organized for a specific purpose, for example, an ad hoc committee elected or appointed to address a specific issue or handle an unanticipated contingency, usually dissolved once the need has been met.

See: proximity.

A librarian employed part-time in an academic library at an institution that grants librarians faculty status. At some institutions, an adjunct employed less than half-time may not be eligible for benefits. Synonymous with part-time faculty.

adjustable shelving
See: fixed shelving.

ad loc.
An abbreviation of the Latin phrase ad locum, meaning "at the place [cited]."

The range of activities normally associated with the management of a government agency, organization, or institution, such as a library or library system. Also refers collectively to the persons responsible for such activity, from director to secretary. See also: library administration.

administrative history
In archives, the part of a finding aid that provides pertinent information concerning the records it lists and describes, such as the history and organizational structure of the agency (or group of related agencies) that generated them, or significant details of the life and career of the individual or family with which they are associated, usually in the form of a biographical note.

administrative metadata
Data about an information resource primarily intended to facilitate its management, for example, information about how and when a document or digital object was created, the person or entity responsible for controlling access to and archiving its content, any restrictions on access or use, and any control or processing activities performed in relation to it. Compare with descriptive metadata and structural metadata. The concept of administrative metadata is subdivided into:

Rights metadata - facilitates management of legal rights in a resource (copyright, licenses, permissions, etc.)
Preservation metadata - facilitates management of processes involved in ensuring the long-term survival and usability of a resource
Technical metadata - documents the creation and characteristics of digital files

administrative value
See: archival value.

Adobe Acrobat
A document exchange program created by Adobe Systems that allows data files created on one software platform (DOS, Windows, Macintosh, etc.) to be displayed and printed on another without loss of text formatting. This capability is particularly important in communication over the Internet, which interconnects computers of all types and sizes. Adobe Systems sells the software required to create or convert documents to its Portable Document Format (PDF) but does not charge users for the software needed to read PDF documents. The Acrobat Reader program can be downloaded directly from the company Web site at: www.adobe.com. See also: plug-in.

adopt a book
A library program in which a person, often a library patron, agrees to donate a modest sum (usually a fixed amount) to help cover the cost of conserving a book or other bibliographic item that is deteriorating from age or overuse. Click here to learn about the British Library's Adopt a Book program. The University of Leeds Library uses a commemorative bookplate to record the adoption. At some public libraries in the United States, the program is designed to supplement funding for collection development (click here to see an example). Also spelled adopt-a-book.

An agreement that a specific textbook will be used for teaching purposes in a state-supported educational institution (school, college, or university). Government approval is required for textbook adoptions in the public schools in many states in the U.S. (see this example).

See: autograph document signed.

A-D strip
A type of dye-coated paper strip manufactured by the Image Permanence Institute (IPI) for detecting and measuring the severity of acetate decay ("vinegar syndrome") in film collections. The strips are indicators that change color in the presence of acetic acid vapor released in the chemical deterioration of acetate base films. They provide an objective means of documenting the extent of decay and deciding when motion picture film, microfilm, or still picture film needs to be duplicated for preservation. Sold in packages of 250, they come with instructions and a color reference pencil. IPI received a Technical Achievement Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 1997 for developing A-D strips. Click here to learn more about them, courtesy of the IPI.

A fully grown, mentally competent person of sufficient age to be considered capable of making mature decisions and held legally accountable for the consequences of his (or her) actions. Libraries operate on the assumption that adult patrons are capable of deciding independently what they wish to read and borrow. Although the parent is responsible for supervising the actions of his or her child, it is appropriate for a librarian to provide guidance to users of all ages in the selection of materials suitable to their age level and interests, if asked to do so. Older adults often have special needs that must be met through outreach. See also: readers' advisory.

adult content
Material in digital or print format, considered by some to be unsuitable for children, usually because it contains sexually explicit text and/or images, graphic depictions of violence, or frank discussions of gender identity or sexual preference. In August 2005, American Libraries reported that a state statute was enacted in Utah on March 21, 2005 establishing an Adult Content Registry of legal Web sites deemed harmful to minors, to be compiled and maintained by the Utah State Attorney General's Office. Internet users may request that a service provider block sites on the Registry or offer filtering software. ISPs that do not comply face criminal misdemeanor charges and a fine of up to $10,000 for each day that listed material is not blocked. On June 9, 2005, a group of 14 Utah bookstores, Internet service providers, and free-speech groups filed suit in the U.S. District Court in Salt Lake City challenging the constitutionality of the new law. Among the plaintiffs are the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Utah, the Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF), and the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression. See also: adult content filter.

adult content filter
Software designed to block retrieval over on the Internet of material considered unsuitable for children (violence, sexually explicit text and images, etc.). The constitutionality of laws requiring the use of such filters in libraries is a subject of debate in the United States. Most image search engines include a default adult content filter that the user can turn off. Synonymous with mature content filter. See also: Children's Internet Protection Act.

adult education
Courses designed specifically for adults who have spent their lives outside the system of formal higher education. Because nontraditional students often lack the library skills of students who follow a traditional course of study, they may require more assistance at the reference desk and a more basic level of bibliographic instruction.

adult fiction
See: erotica.

adult learner
A person older than traditional college age who pursues an independent, organized course of study, usually without the benefit of formal instruction at an established educational institution. When enrolled as a nontraditional student at a college or university, such a person may require reference services and bibliographic instruction at a more basic level than traditional students.

adult literacy
See: literacy.

adult services
Materials, services, and programs intended to meet the needs of the adult users of a public library, as opposed to those designed for children and young adults, for example, information on tax or resume preparation. See also: readers' advisory.

advance copy
A copy of a book or other publication bound in advance of the normal press run to enable the publisher to check that all is in order before binding of the edition proceeds. Advance copies are also sent to booksellers, book club selection committees, and reviewers before the announced publication date, sometimes unbound or in a binding other than the publisher's binding, often with a review slip laid in. Copies sent unbound are known as advance sheets. Synonymous with early copy. Compare with reading copy and review copy.

advanced search
See: search mode.

advance on royalty
A non-refundable sum paid by the publisher to the author(s) of a new book prior to its publication against the royalties it is expected to earn, usually offered as an inducement to sign a book contract. When actual royalties exceed the advance, additional earnings are paid out according to the terms of the publisher's agreement. Synonymous with author's advance. See also: unearned advance.

advance order
An order placed for a new book prior to its date of publication, usually in response to prepublication promotion. The number of copies ordered in advance may assist the publisher in determining the size of the first printing, the price, and how much to spend on advertising.

advance sheet
See: advance copy.

In literature and film, a fiction genre in which the hero undertakes a difficult venture of uncertain issue, usually in an exotic setting, often culminating in a hazardous chase or decisive physical struggle. Character development is usually minimal. Adventure appeals to a predominantly male audience. Subgenres include the spy/espionage novel, tales of political intrigue or terrorism, thrillers, survival stories, and male romance (example: Kim by Rudyard Kipling). Adventure stories are often published in series featuring a series hero (example: the Horatio Hornblower novels of C.S. Forester). If the hero is a swaggering ruffian, the tale is known as a swashbuckler. See also: romance and western.

adventus book
See: festival book.

A public notice of the availability of goods or services through purchase, subscription, or other commercial means, commonly appearing in newspapers and magazines and on broadsides, handbills, posters, etc. In magazines, the word "Advertisement" may appear at the head of the page to distinguish advertising from editorial content. In binding, stacked advertising in issues of a periodical may be removed to reduce bulk. See also: advertorial.

Advertising text written in editorial style and format. To avoid confusion, most magazine publishers add the word "Advertisement" to the running head. See also: infomercial.

Advertisements bound into a book, usually at the end of the back matter. Click here to see an example following the title page in a late 18th-century edition (University of Pittsburgh Libraries). Abbreviated ads or advrts.

advice book
A form of literature for women that provided practical and philosophical guidance on the domestic skills required in everyday life, such as etiquette, household management, cooking, gardening, childcare, family health and recreation, and female employment, often written from the perspective of a parent, Christian minister, or other authority, rather than from a feminist point of view. Beginning with The English Housewife by Gervase Markham, published in 1615, such works conveyed the code of behavior considered appropriate for women in society up to the early 20th century. Examples can be seen in the online exhibitions Defining Her Life: Advice Books for Women (University of Delaware Library) and The Making of a Homemaker (Smithsonian Institution Libraries). A precursor of the how-to book and self-help book. Synonymous with conduct book.

advisory service
A periodical publication, usually issued weekly, biweekly, or monthly in print or online, providing research, statistical analysis, and guidance on financial investments (stocks, bonds, options, mutual funds, etc.), for example, The Value Line Investment Survey, published weekly since 1936 by Value Line, Inc. Libraries often store current issues of a print advisory service in loose-leaf bindings to facilitate updating.

Concerted action taken in support of libraries, particularly political action aimed at securing adequate funding for library operations and capital improvements, which may include lobbying legislators and government officials, organizing voter rallies, securing media coverage, etc. The most effective advocacy campaigns are often based on an action plan. Thomas J. Hennen, Jr., recommends "10 Rules for Local Advocacy" in the article Stand Up for Libraries in the June/July 2005 issue of American Libraries. The American Library Association (ALA) maintains an Issues & Advocacy Web site. The Advocacy Institute offers workshops at ALA annual and midwinter conferences to help train participants in advocacy skills and strategies. See also: Americans for Libraries Council and library advocate.

See: Association for Educational Communications and Technology.

An abbreviation of all edges gilt. See: gilt edges.

An abbreviation of all edges marbled. Marbling applied to the fore-edge and the top and bottom edges of a volume (see this example).

See: Association of Educational Publishers.

aerial map
See: photomap.

aerial mosaic
See: photomosaic.

aerial photograph
A detailed photographic image of the surface of the earth (or another celestial body) taken from the air downwards, vertically or at a predetermined angle from the vertical, usually from a passing aircraft or satellite, for use in mapping, reconnaissance, exploration, etc. In a vertical aerial photograph, the shot is taken downward with the camera axis as close to vertical as possible, producing an image that lies approximately in a horizontal plane (click here to see an example). An oblique aerial photograph is taken with the axis of the camera directed between the vertical and horizontal planes (see this example). A high oblique aerial photograph shows the horizon line and a low oblique aerial photograph does not (camera angle usually less than 45 degrees from the vertical). Click here to see the various types of aerial photographs illustrated. Aerial photographs must be rectified to eliminate displacement and distortions before they can be used in mapping.

Libraries catalog aerial photographs as cartographic materials. Click here to connect to the historic Illinois Air Photo Imagebase maintained by the Grainger Engineering Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. See also: orthophotograph, photomap, photomosaic, quad-centered photograph, and remote sensing image.

aeronautical chart
A chart prepared specifically for aerial navigation, showing essential topographic features, known obstructions, navigational aids, and other information of interest to aircraft pilots, such as airport name and 3-letter designator, control tower radio frequency, field elevation, length of longest runway, etc. Aeronautical charts are generally produced in several series, each on a specified map projection and differing in scale, format, and content, for use as dictated by type of aircraft and whether the flight is to be conducted under visual or instrument flight rules (Glossary of Cartographic Terms, Perry-Castañeda Library). Click here and here to see examples at different scales.

See: African American Studies Librarians.

A sworn statement made by an individual voluntarily in writing, especially under oath or on affirmation before an authorized magistrate or notary public as to the truth of its contents (see this example).

A separately administered organization closely connected with another by formal agreement and mutual interest, for example, the various organizations affiliated with American Library Association (ALA). Also refers to the process of forming such a link. See also: affiliated library.

affiliated library
A library that is, by formal agreement, part of a larger library system but administered independently by its own board or management structure. Medical and law libraries at large universities often fall into this category. Compare with branch library.

affirmative action
An active effort, begun in the late 1960s, to enhance opportunities in the United States for minority groups and women, through federal regulations and programs intended to counteract bias and discrimination in government employment and contracting and in admissions to state-supported educational institutions. Most publicly supported libraries in the United States are affirmative action employers. The legality of affirmative action has been called into question by individuals and political groups who believe that legislating equality discourages initiative and results in reverse discrimination. See also: diversity.

See: American Film Institute.

African American Studies Librarians Section (AFAS)
The section of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) devoted to librarianship and collection development as it relates to African American studies; to the ongoing evaluation and discussion of research in African American studies; and to resource sharing, archival materials, bibliographic control, retrospective collecting, electronic information retrieval, and oral history as they relate to the field. Click here to connect to the AFAS homepage.

A brief passage or essay, usually written by the author, appearing at the end of a work as explanation or, in a special edition, as commentary on the work's reception. In a collection, the editor(s) may include an afterword to tie together or sum up the main themes developed in the selected works. Compare with epilogue.

See: Authors Guild.

against the grain
A popular expression meaning "contrary to natural inclination" originally used in the printing trade to refer to machine-made paper folded across the grain of its fibers. In book production, sheets are printed with the grain running from top to bottom of the leaves, allowing them to flex easily lengthwise after they are bound. When folded with the grain, paper tears easily and cleanly along the fold. When folded across the grain, it cracks and leaves a ragged edge when torn.

Against the Grain (ATG)
A bimonthly journal providing news about libraries, publishers, book jobbers, and subscription agents, with reports on the issues, literature, and people affecting books and journals. ISSN: 1043-2094. Click here to connect to the ATG homepage.

A naturally occurring stone, composed of a form of silica similar to chalcedony, usually light in color with darker bands of brown, purple, or pink, shaped and polished for use as a burnishing tool, to impart a reflective sheen to gold and other metal leaf in the edge gilding of books, raised gilding in manuscripts, and gilding of paintings and picture frames. When mounted in a handle, such a tool is known as a "dog tooth" (see these modern examples in various shapes). Click here to see an agate burnisher in use.

A-G Canada Ltd.
See: Auto-Graphics, Inc.

For archival purposes, any commercial enterprise, organization, institution, or other corporate body that creates and manages records of its business, activities, or affairs. In very large organizations, subordinate units (sections, departments, offices) may function as separate agencies. In a more general sense, any person (agent) or organization that has the authority to perform a specific function, for example, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). See also: government agency.

agency-assigned data element
In library cataloging, a data element in the MARC record whose content is determined by a designated agency and is the responsibility of that agency, for example, field 222 (Key Title) which is the responsibility of an ISSN Center. Although this type of data element is usually input by the designated agency, it may be transcribed by another organization. (MARC 21 Concise Formats)

A list of topics or issues to be discussed at a meeting, sometimes solicited from prospective attendees in advance by the person who calls or chairs the meeting. It is customary to distribute the agenda before the meeting begins, to allow attendees time to prepare. A hidden agenda is a goal or intention consciously or unconsciously concealed, usually to gain the advantage of surprise, a tactic that often backfires when unsuspecting persons discover that they have been manipulated.

An individual or company that acts as middleman between a library or library system and a publisher in the purchase of materials, for example, a subscription service such as EBSCO that manages periodical subscriptions for client libraries. See also: literary agent.

A bibliographic service that provides online access to the digital full-text of periodicals published by different publishers. Because aggregator databases can be very large, tracking their coverage is not an easy task for serials librarians. A task group of the Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC) is working on standards for analytic catalog records for serials titles available electronically from aggregator services. Currently, the top two journal aggregators in the United States are EBSCO and ProQuest. Recently, EBSCO has been building market share by offering higher up-front payments to secure exclusivity from the publishers of certain journals. The effects of this competitive practice on libraries and the end-user are as yet unclear.

aggregator-neutral record
A bibliographic record describing the online version of a serial publication, containing information applicable to all versions distributed by all providers, regardless of whether the serial has a print counterpart or was born digital. In July 2003, CONSER abandoned its earlier policy of creating a separate record for each aggregation, focusing instead on providing a single bibliographic description for an electronic serial issued in multiple aggregations. Although nothing in the record specifically indicates that it is aggregator-neutral, multiple URLs may be included in the record for packages containing the complete serial. OCLC is engaged in converting existing bibliographic records for electronic serials to the new practice. Click here to learn more about CONSER policy on aggregator-neutral records.

See: alternative history.

See: artificial intelligence.

See: American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works.

See: American Institute of Graphic Arts.

See: Association of Independent Information Professionals.

See: American Indian Library Association.

An acronym for abstract, introduction, materials and methods, results, and discussion, the standard structure used in writing research articles for publication in scientific and medical journals. Some have argued that a "C" should be added to the end for "conclusions." Synonymous with IMRAD.

Publisher's slang for the amount of white space on a printed page. Compare with blank.

airborne pollutant
See: air pollution.

airbrush work
A painting or graphic work created with a tool that uses compressed air to atomize paint, ink, or dye into tiny droplets, allowing the artist to achieve a smooth blending of colors on paper or canvas (see this example). Most airbrushes are operated by means of a trigger or lever that controls the flow of paint through a small nozzle (example). Demos can be seen in YouTube.

air drying
The drying of wet books and paper records by exposing them to circulating air, a method appropriate for items that are only damp or partially wet (for example, along the edges). To discourage the growth of mold, the Northeast Document Conservation Center recommends that the drying room be kept below 70 degrees F., with relative humidity below 50 percent. If the edges are only slightly wet, a book may be stood on end and fanned open in the direction of a circulating air current (electric fans are often used). In an air-conditioned room maintained at constant relative humidity of 25-35 percent and temperature in the range of 50-65 degrees F., books with wet edges will dry in about two weeks. To minimize distortion of the edges, the volume should be placed flat under pressure just before drying is completed.

For wetter books, the NEDCC recommends repeated interleaving with paper towels or clean, unprinted newsprint every few pages and placing clean blotter paper inside the front and back covers. The book should then be closed gently and stood on several sheets of absorbent paper. Each time the interleaving is changed, the volume should be turned from head to tail or vice versa. Books must be completely dry before reshelving to prevent the spread of mold. Completely soaked books should be frozen and vacuum dried to minimize cockling of leaves and distortion of text block and binding. Vacuum freeze drying is also recommended for books printed on coated paper because the leaves adhere when wet, producing a condition known as blocking as the text block dries.

Broadcast of a commercially available audiorecording or audiovisual recording over radio or television. Amount of radio airplay is measured and reported on charts, to rank the popularity of new releases.

air pollution
Particulate and gaseous air contaminants (sulfur dioxide, ozone, nitrogen dioxide, and chlorides) are ubiquitous, especially in urban areas where industry and transportation are heaviest. Difficult and expensive to control, airborne pollutants affect the condition of books by interacting with impurities in paper and with unfavorable climatic conditions to further degrade a book's components. One obvious symptom is discoloration around the edges of the leaves. Some materials (cellulose acetate, cellulose nitrate, polyurethane magnetic tapes, natural rubbers, silver, certain dyes, etc.) are especially sensitive to air pollutants and require special conservation measures.

According to former Yale University conservator Jane Greenfield, levels inside a building are roughly half those found outside (The Care of Fine Books, Nick Lyons Books, 1988). Complete removal requires a ducted air-conditioning system. Room air cleaners with synthetic and fiberglass filters remove particulates; activated carbon filters eliminate gaseous pollutants. Electrostatic precipitators are not recommended because they release damaging ozone and facilitate the conversion of sulfur dioxide to sulfuric acid. Storing rare and valuable items in boxes or other protective covering can help minimize the effects of air pollution. Smoking should not be allowed near books because it introduces pollutants into the air. For more information, see Airborne Pollutants in Museums, Galleries, and Archives: Risk Assessment, Control Strategies, and Preservation Management (2004) by Jean Tétreault, published by the Canadian Conservation Institute (CCI). Synonymous with atmospheric pollution.

airport fiction
Fictional works that sell particularly well at airport newsstands and roadside convenience stores because they do not make intellectual demands on the reader and are therefore enjoyable to read while travelling or on holiday. Published in paperback, often with the title boldly embossed on the front cover, airport novels are usually fairly long, but fast-paced and easy to read (see these examples). They provide distraction from the boredom and inconvenience of travel. See also: potboiler.

The space left unoccupied between two parallel bookcases or shelf ranges, or at right angles to a bank of ranges, to allow library patrons and staff to access the stacks. Minimum aisle width is 36 inches for fixed shelving in libraries open to the public in the United States. Some types of compact shelving allow staff or users to shift movable ranges, usually along tracks in the floor, opening aisles as needed. See also: cross aisle and range aisle.

See: Association of Jewish Libraries.

An abbreviation of also known as. See: allonym, eponym, pen name, and pseudonym.

See: American Libraries.

See: American Library Association.

ALA Allied Professional Association (ALA-APA)
A separate adjunct organization operating under bylaws approved by the governing Council of the American Library Association at the 2002 Midwinter Meeting, which allows the ALA to conduct activities prohibited under its current 501(c)(3) tax status. In the planning stages since 1996, the ALA-APA is a 501(c)(6) entity focused on postgraduate specialty certification, pay equity, and other activities aimed at improving the status of librarians and other library employees. Click here to connect to the ALA-APA homepage.

See: ALA Allied Professional Association.

ALA character set
An informal name for the set of characters specified in MARC documentation for use in the MARC record, including the Latin alphabet, special characters, diacritics, 14 superscript characters, 14 subscript characters, and three Greek letters. Synonymous with USMARC character set. See also: ANSEL.

ALA Code of Ethics
See: code of ethics.

ALA Editions
Established in 1886, the Publishing Section of the American Library Association first evolved into ALA Books and Pamphlets, then into ALA Editions in 1993. Its roster of first editions includes Reference Books for Libraries (1902), Books for College Libraries (1967), Anglo-American Cataloging Rules (1967), and the Intellectual Freedom Manual (1974). Income from annual sales of over 100,000 copies of titles published by ALA Editions supports ALA's other programs. Publications currently available from ALA Editions are listed in its trade catalog. Click here to connect to the homepage of ALA Editions.

à la fanfare
See: fanfare binding.

ALA Filing Rules
A set of guidelines for determining the order in which entries are to be filed in a library catalog, originally published by the American Library Association in 1942 under the title A.L.A. Rules for Filing Catalog Cards. Revised in 1967 to correspond with Anglo-American Cataloging Rules, the filing rules were expanded and published under the current title in 1980 to cover any form of bibliographic display (print, microform, digital, etc.) and any catalog code.

ALA Graphics
A marketing section of the American Library Association that sells