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Welcome to your university library

This guide contains some Library related information that will be most useful in the first couple of weeks of your very first semester. As there are some changes to the Library in 2022, returning students may also find this of use.

A-Z list of words

Abstract - a summary or brief description of a book or article.

Article -  a short piece of research (usually between 1 and 35 pages in length) published in a journal, magazine or newspaper

Back issue – older copies of a magazine or journal

Bibliography - A list of books, journal articles and other references or citations that appear at the end of a book, article or essay

Blackboard – see Course Resources

Boolean searching – the terms and, or and not that can be used in the advanced search options of many databases to narrow or broaden your search

Check out – to borrow a book from the Library

Citation – a quotation from, or reference to a book or author, in support of a fact 

Class number  - see Shelf mark

Copyright – law which protects an author from the illegal use of their work; e.g. there are legal limits on how much you can photocopy from one book or periodical

Copyright Cleared Content - these are book chapters or journal articles that might be linked to from a reading list. They have been been checked for Copyright permissions and digitally scanned

Course resources -this is the part of the University's web site that students use to access course information and learning materials, such as lecture notes, announcements, reading lists etc. It is accessed via Udo, and sometimes called by its trade name, Blackboard.

Current copy - the most recent edition of a journal or magazine

Database – an online collection of  information, usually journal articles or other subject information. You can use databases to search for journal articles suitable for your research. Some have the complete full-text articles, but others only give a brief summary.

Dewey number – the number order in which books are placed on the shelves. See also Shelfmark

Digital Library - the University of Derby's collection of online materials: databases, eJournals, eBooks, copyright-cleared resources, etc.

Dissertation – a long essay on a specific subject., especially one written for a final year University course

eBooks - Electronic (Online) books identical to the print version

eJournals- Electronic (online) journals.

Eduroam - wireless internet access. Derby students and students from other participating Universities can log in on their laptops and devices.

Electronic resources - These are any resources found online, e.g. databases, eJournals and eBooks

FAQ – frequently asked questions

Full text – the entire online book, journal or article

Harvard – the main referencing style used in the University (although there are others). There are many 'styles' of Harvard referencing - we use the specific version from Cite Them Right at the university.

Index – an alphabetical list that usually appears at the end of a book, to help you find the pages where a specific subject is mentioned

Inter Library Loans (ILL) – the service where we borrow books or supply journal articles from other libraries if we do not have them in stock at Derby

ISBN – International Standard Book Number – the unique identifying number of published books

ISSN – International Standard Serial Number – the unique number that identifies each journal title

Issue (verb) – to borrow a book or other item from the library. For example you would use a self-issue machine to borrow a book

Issue (noun) – a specific part or month of a journal

Journal – an academic magazine, that deals with a particular subject or professional activity, e.g. a medical journal. They include reports about research and are issued at regular intervals, usually with volume numbers and dates; also called periodicals, magazines or serials

Keywords – single words or short phrases that best define the main points of your research topic

Library Search – the system for searching many of the Library’s online resources in just one search to find books, media, journal articles and more

Literature  Review – a description of the literature available on a topic, often completed before beginning work on a dissertation

Loan period – the length of time that you can borrow a book for.  All books are issued for one week and auto-renew.

Oversize  - large books that do not fit on the main shelves and may be kept in a separate sequence

PDF- are files that show the full text of an article just as it appears in the printed version. It stands for Portable Document Format. In order to download pdf files onto your computer, you need a pdf reader. Adobe Acrobat is the best known, and available to download for free

Peer review – the process by which a journal article is checked by a panel of experts to ensure it contains genuine scholarly research

Periodical - see also Journal. A publication issued at regular intervals. Magazines and journals are types of periodical

Plagiarism – the copying, summarising or paraphrasing of someone else’ ideas,  but not acknowledging or referencing them correctly, and so passing them off as your own work

Reading List – an online reading list of the books and other materials that your lecturer recommends. You can find them on your Module page on Course resources

Recall –an email from the library asking you to return a book that you have borrowed

Record- an individual item in a database

Reference – details of a book, journal or other material that you have used in your work

Reference Only book – one that cannot be borrowed and must be read in the library. Spine labels on the book will show if it is for reference only

Referencing – acknowledging the books and other sources that you have used in your work, usually by having a reference list or bibliography at the end of your work, and citations within the work

Reserve / Reservation-  you can reserve books to collect later or to have them sent to a different site for collection

Return – to bring a book back to the library

Self issue – to use the self service machines to issue books to yourself

SED (Secure Electronic Delivery) – part of the Inter Library Loans Service, when a journal article is sent as an email attachment

Shelfmark – the numerical system in which the books are arranged on the shelves, where the number represents the subject e.g. 650 for business, 340 for law etc. 

Stack – the rolling storage shelves in the libraries, used for keeping the journals and older material in

Thesis – a longer piece of original academic work, often written for a higher degree, such as a PhD

University of Derby ID Card - the plastic card given to students on joining the University. It is your University identity card, Library card, and can be an access card to some University facilities at evenings and weekends

UDo - short for University of Derby online. This is the gateway, or main webpage, to online services for students and staff. Course Resources and electronic resources can both be accessed from UDo

UDORA – the University’s research repository for staff and research publications.

Username – your username to log into the University’s online systems is your student number, and is printed on your ID card

Vault – part of the Kedleston Road Library on the entrance floor

VLE- stands for Virtual Learning Environment, the generic name for Course Resources or Blackboard