Indexing and Abstracting Periodicals

1) What are the functions of indexing and abstracting periodicals? 
The primary functions of I & A periodicals are:

  • to keep users abreast of current literature of their interest
  • to find specific information in their subject field
  • to help in the retrospective search of literature
  • to provide bibliographical control of literature

The secondary functions are:

  • to help users get over language barrier
  • to obtain correct and complete bibliographical details of particular items of primary literature not available to the user.

2) Describe the essential features of presentation in I & A periodicals. 
i) Maintaining uniformity and consistency ill rendering the bibliographical description.
ii) Adopting most helpful order of arranging the entries to facilitate easy and convenient consultation of the I & A service.
iii) Providing various types of indexes to enhance the retrieval efficiency of  I & A periodicals.
iv) Additional helpful features are: detailed contents pages, list of standard
abbreviations used, and explanatory note on how to use the service.


Access : Points of approach to information.
Current Awareness : To keep abreast of current developments/advances as seen through recent literature.
Databases : A collection of related items of information which together make up the record for a single topic/aspect Usually computer generated.
Machine-Readable : lnforrnation stored in electronic media such as magnetic tape, disc and CD-ROM.
Primary Document : That which contains original information or the first formulation of any new observation, experiment, idea, etc.
Recall : To retrieve from a store of information items which are relevant to a query.
Relevance : To retrieve from a store of information items which are precise and relevant to a query.
Scatter : Lying in different places; not situated together.
Secondary Document : That which presents the contents of primary document in a condensed form or list them in a helpful way so that existence of primary documents is known and access to
them made easy.
Seepage : Slow leaking through or slow but continuous flow.

Source: IGNOU Study Material

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