Speci fi c terms are studied in terms of their linguistic aspect grammar and

Speci fi c terms are studied in terms of their

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Speci fi c terms are studied in terms of their linguistic aspect (grammar and semantic form), scienti fi c aspect, and frequency of use aspect, using specialised programs able to select, systematise and validate the use in the indexing process of only some terms that will become descriptors. Until these programs emerged, this selection and validation effort was exclu- sively the work of some groups consisting of linguists and librarians specialised in processing certain sciences and subjects. Currently this task is generally committed to national bibliographic agencies (national libraries) or national centers for infor- mation and documentation. All terms established this way create the indexing language, which is a classi- fi cation language with a speci fi c syntax. Principles and rules used to select and validate descriptors and also the rules of item and information indexing are the subject of some international standards developed in order to ensure unity and consistency to the information classi fi cation process. The assembly of descriptors in a certain language represents an indexing instrument called thesaurus. 5.2.5 Thesaurus Is a standard list of descriptors, alphabetically ordered, indicating semantic and logical relationships (hierarchic and associative). Descriptors are unique accepted forms, therefore authoritative, and for this reason controlled vocabularies and thesauri are known in library-science literature as a list of authorities. Thesaurus or list of authorities functions: Ensures the control of descriptor s use at the level of content description; Allows the interrogation of an online catalogue (bibliographic database) in a natural language that the thesaurus translates into a classi fi cation language (al- lows also interrogation with excluded terms); Facilitates navigation within a search with speci fi c and generic questions; Ensures completion of a search by investigations and on the associated term; and Ensures a good understanding and usage of each term by applied notes and explicative notes. 5.2 Cataloguing 61
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In indexing practice, several types of thesauri or list of authorities are known. The most well known and used are Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), from Washington, United States of America, and the French version RAMEAU, which are monolingual thesauri or encyclopedic lists of authorities. (Holley 1986 ; Rameau 1991 ; Kao 1999 ; Library of Congress 1999 ) Thesauri are multidisciplinary because they gather terms from all sciences and subjects. Due to their encyclopedic character, thus a large volume of systematised information, this type of thesaurus is developed in a single language. Specialised thesauri came from information indexing necessitated by certain domains. These are developed by professional associations, research institutes, or international organisations, rather than national bibliographic agencies.
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