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Glossary of Library Terms: M-O


Magazine: A periodical publication usually considered to be of more general or popular interest than a journal. See also SERIAL.

Menu: A display (in libraries, computerized) where the user is offered a number of options from which to choose. For example, in ALEPH the user selects the type of search desired: Author, Title, etc.

Microform, microfilm: a means of archiving printed documents, especially periodicals. A printed document is photographed and the image is reduced and printed on a transparent film, which can then be read by a machine that passes light through the image and enlarges it on a screen. This allows materials that might otherwise become brittle or easily damaged to be maintained and stored easily and inexpensively for long periods of time.

MLA:  Is a set of rules and guidelines for citing references as well as preparing and submitting manuscripts for publication from the Modern Language Association.  These rules can be found in the MLA Handbook and the MLA Style Manual.

Monograph:  A scholarly book or pamphlet on a specific subject.  Usually it is used synonymously for book. 

Natural language search: A means of searching an electronic database using terms generated by the searcher, rather than controlled vocabulary. See keyword searching.

Online:  Direct communication between a user and a computer which allows a request to be processed and the result displayed immediately on the screen.