Skip to Main Content

It's All Geek to Me

M - R


A publication, issued on a regular basis, containing popular articles, written and illustrated in a less technical manner than the articles found in a journal.


Multi-Function Printers (MFPs) are office machines that combine several functions that usually require several machines into one single machine. The MFPs in the library can print, copy and scan. The MFPs in the Library atrium can print and copy in color in addition to black and white. All other MFPs are black and white only. For students, color printing costs $0.10 a side.


A reduced sized photographic reproduction of printed information on reel to reel film (microfilm) or film cards (microfiche) or opaque pages that can be read with a microform reader/printer.

MLA Style

The Modern Language Association (MLA) citation style is the standard citation style in many Humanities fields, including English, Film and New Media Studies, and Cultural Studies. For more information, see MLA Handbook.


A non-serial publication that is complete in one volume or a defined number of volumes.


Any information resource that presents information using more than one media (print, picture, audio, or video).

New Book Area

Located between Wallace Library’s front door and atrium, it is a seating area in which the newest books in the library’s collection are displayed. These books can be checked-out by any member of the Wheaton community.


serial publication, often issued daily, on certain days of the week, or weekly, containing news, editorial comment, regular columns, letters to the editor, cartoons, advertising, and other items of current and often local interest to a general readership. Traditionally printed on newsprint, may newspapers are additionally or exclusively published digitally. Some newspapers focus on specific subject matter (e.g. education, culture, business).


A fictional prose narrative involving people and events, usually with some degree of realism.


A non-profit cooperative organization with library members from across the world. Maintains WorldCat (aka Libraries Worldwide,) a catalog that itemizes the holdings of its member libraries. Also administers WorldShare Management Service (WMS).

OPAC (Online Public Access Catalog)

See Catalog.

Open Access

Information content (including articles, books and data sets) made freely and universally available via the Internet in easy to read formal. Open access is a new model of scholarly publishing developed to free researchers and libraries from the limitations imposed by excessive subscription price increases for peer-reviewed journals. By breaking the monopoly of publishers over the distribution of scholarly research, open access makes access to scholarly information more equitable and has the added advantage of allowing the author to retain copyright.


A complete rewording of a thought, idea or opinion expressed in a previously spoken statement or written work, usually to make the meaning clearer by substituting shorter, simpler words for difficult vocabulary. Also, the use of rewording as a literary device or educational technique. Compare with quotation and summarize. See also: plagiarism.

Peer-Reviewed Journal / Refereed Journal

Peer-reviewed or refereed journals have a panel of experts in a field review all the articles submitted for publication to ensure that each article reflects the best research practices of the field, is logically argued, and is clearly written. Peer review helps to ensure the quality of an information source.


An information source published in multiple parts at regular intervals (daily, weekly, monthly, biannually). Journals, magazines, and newspapers are all periodicals. See also Serial.

A link that will return you to the same page every time you click the link.


The theft of ideas or of written passages or works, where these are passed off as one’s own work without acknowledgement of their true origin. Plagiarism is not always easily separable from imitation, adaptation, or pastiche, but is usually distinguished by its dishonest intention. Paraphrasing, summarizing and proper citation are essential tools for avoiding plagiarism.

Popular Source

A publication written for a general audience. Popular sources are often written by journalists and non-scholars. Magazines, newspapers and blogs are examples of popular sources.

Primary Source

An original record of events, such as a diary, a newspaper article, a public record, or scientific documentation.


A bibliographic database of 660+ scholarly journals from major university presses covering literature and criticism, history, performing arts, cultural studies, education, philosophy, political science, gender studies, and more. The Library's subscription also includes over 7,000 e-books. This is a good database for researching interdisciplinary topics within the Humanities.


A company that creates a variety of bibliographic databases that Wallace Library subscribes to, including EconLitMLA International BiographySocial Sciences Abstracts, and Biological Sciences.

Proxy Server

An Internet server that acts as a "go-between” for a computer on a local network (secure system) and the open Web. Often checks to determine "right of access” to the secure environment and speeds up requests by caching frequently accessed Web pages. Can also act as a firewall.


An entity or company that produces and issues books, journals, newspapers, or other publications.


A bibliographic database that includes journals covering medicine, nursing, pharmacy, dentistry, veterinary medicine, health care, biology, biochemistry, and molecular evolution. Compiled by the U.S. National Library of Medicine and covers works from 1950 to the present.


Libraries shelve oversized books (those over 10.6 inches tall) separately from regular-sized books to save space. Oversized books are divided into two categories: quarto (10.5 to 12.25 inches) and folio (over 12.25 inches). Quarto books are located on the Stacks Level, next to the door to the Science Center.


Words or passages reproduced from a written work or repeated verbatim from an oral statement. Because words and phrases taken out of context may give a misleading impression of the whole, care must be taken in selecting quotations. A passage quoted incorrectly is a misquotation. In writing, quotations should be surrounded by quotation marks ("”) and should always be properly cited.

Research & Instruction (R & I)

Made up of the Library’s technologists and liaison librarians, this department is responsible for library and technology instruction, providing support for onCourse, and, most importantly, for helping students and faculty with research projects.


A request for the return of library material before the due date. This happens when a library user needs access to a library item that has been checked-out by another user, and cannot wait until the due date. To recall an item at Wallace Library, make a request at the Information Desk in the atrium.


Reference: 1. A service that helps people find needed information (see: liaison). 2. Sometimes "reference" refers to reference collections, such as encyclopedias, indexes, handbooks, directories, etc. 3. A citation to a work is also known as a reference.

Reference Reading Room

The room off the Wallace Library atrium where the reference collection is kept. Equipped with a variety of workspaces and seating options, this room is also a quiet study area.


RefWorks is a web-based citation management software that helps you organize your references and use them to create bibliographies and format citations in papers. You can import the bibliographic information of a book, chapter or article from library catalogs and databases; create correctly styled in-text citations in the citation style of your choice; and insert bibliographies from your list of references in a variety of citation styles. For more information, see our Citation Management guide.

Remote Access

Users who want to use library tools while off-campus will have to login using their WID and password.


An extension of the loan period for library materials.

Reserves / Course Reserves

A service providing special, often short-term, access to course-related materials (books, articles, audio-visual materials, current newspapers or magazines).

Review Article

Simply put, a book review that reviews more than one book, usually on the same topic. Occasionally, review articles can take the form of a literature review molded into an entire article.