Identifying ResourcesDatabases: Definitions

A database is a collection of information in electronic format organized in a logical fashion. Some examples of databases you may encounter in your daily life are a telephone book, an airline reservation system, and files on your computer.

Examples

Some examples of databases you may encounter when using the library are the EJC, a database of full-text electronic journals; ERIC, a database of education materials; Films on Demand, a database of videos; ebrary, a database of electronic books; and WONDER a government database of healthcare information on the Internet.

Records & Fields

Database, Records, & FieldsRecords

There is a record for each unique item in a database; for example, an article in the ERIC database or a book in the XPLORE Library Catalog, a database of materials the XU library owns.

Fields

Records store pieces of information about the item in fields. Databases typically have fields for for the author, title, subject, date, publisher, etc.

Example

The example below shows the record for Catching Fire, a book by Suzanne Collins. The record for this book is  in the XPLORE Library Catalog. The fields associated with this record include Author, Title, Publisher, Call #, Description, Note, and Subject.

XPLORE Library Catalog Record with Fields

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