RAILS Glossary

Acronyms, abbreviations, and terms that are specific to RAILS or important to Illinois libraries.

For general library-related terms, see the Online Dictionary for Library and Information Science


A

AISLE

Association of Illinois School Library Educators. Organization that provides leadership and support for school library staff. https://www.aisled.org (Formerly ISLMA, the Illinois School Library Media Association.)

ALA

American Library Association. Provides leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of library services. http://ala.org

ALS

Alliance Library System, one of the predecessor regional library systems that merged to form RAILS.

AVID

Audiovisual Information & Discussion networking group.

C

CARLI

Consortium of Academic and Research Libraries in Illinois. Many RAILS academic libraries and a few special libraries are members. https://www.carli.illinois.edu

CASL

Chicago Area Solo Librarians networking group.

CCS

Cooperative Computer Services. A shared catalog for public libraries in the north-eastern area of RAILS (north/northwest suburbs of Chicago). http://ccslib.org

CE

Continuing education. RAILS offers a wide variety of CE to members, including recorded webinars.

CMC

Cataloging Maintenance Center, a contract provider of cataloging services funded by the Illinois State Library. CMC is operated by the Illinois Heartland Library System.

https://www.illinoisheartland.org/cmc

CMS

Central Management Services. The Illinois state agency responsible for procurement, videoconferencing, telecommunications, etc. https://www2.illinois.gov/cms

CODSULI

Council of Directors of State University Libraries in Illinois.

consortium (plural: consortia)

A group of libraries created through a formal agreement, generally for the pupose of resource sharing. Examples include shared catalog/automation consortia, and e-book purchasing consortia. Shared catalog consortia include RAILS LLSAPs (e.g.: PrairieCat, RSA, and SWAN) and other independent consortia.

CPDU

Continuing Professional Development Units. Credits earned by school librarians and teachers for continuing education activities.

CPL

Chicago Public Library. https://www.chipublib.org/

CPLS

Chicago Public Library System. One of three Illinois regional library systems, comprising Chicago Public Library. CPLS is the only public library system in the state.

CTS

Continental Transportation Solutions, a company that RAILS contracts with to provide delivery services in some areas.

D

DLS

DuPage Library System, one of the predecessor regional library systems that merged to form RAILS.

E

Explore More Illinois

An online program allowing cardholders from participating RAILS libraries to receive free passes, discount admission, or other incentives from a variety of cultural institutions (museums, cultural centers, zoos, aquariums, gardens, historical societies).  https://www.exploremoreillinois.org/

F

Find More Illinois

The RAILS catalog overlay project which expands esource sharing and facilitates interlibrary loan by providing a single discovery interface that draws from the catalogs of participating libraries. https://www.findmoreillinois.org/

FOIA

Freedom of Information Act. The law gives the public the right to request access to records from government agencies, including public libraries. RAILS provides public libraries with a FOIA/OMA Hotline to help with such requests.

FY

Fiscal year. The RAILS fiscal year runs from July 1 though June 30.

H

HECA

Higher Education Cooperation Act. Provides grant funds administered by the Illinois Board of Higher Education.

I

IACRL

Illinois Association of College and Research Libraries. Provides support to academic libraries. https://www.ila.org/forum/1/illinois-association-of-college-research-lib...

IBHE

Illinois Board of Higher Education. https://www.ibhe.org

ICB

Illinois Center for the Book, an arm of the Illinois State Library that promotes books, book arts, libraries and reading in Illinois. http://cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/library/center_for_the_book

ICCB

Illinois Community College Board. https://www.iccb.org/iccb

ICN

Illinois Century Network, the telecommunications backbone for schools and colleges, libraries, museum, and government agencies. http://illinois.net

IDA

Illinois Digital Archives, a repository for the digital collections of the Illinois State Library and other libraries and cultural institutions. http://www.idaillinois.org

IGA

Inter-governmental agreement. An example of an IGA is a contract for a public library to provide library cards to students of a school district outside the library's taxing area.

IHLS

Illinois Heartland Library System. One of three Illinois regional library systems. Formed in 2011 through the merger of Lewis & Clark Library System, Lincoln Trail Libraries System, Rolling Prairie Library System, and Shawnee Library System. Like RAILS, IHLS is a multitype system (serving academic, public, school, and special libraries). https://www.illinoisheartland.org

ILA

Illinois Library Association. The state organization for library staff and trustees. https://www.ila.org/

ILDS

Illinois Library Delivery System. RAILS provides ILDS interlibrary delivery service in partnership with the Illinois Heartland Library System. ILDS delivers to most Illinois academic libraries and provides the inter-hub shuttle service for statewide delivery. https://www.illinoisdelivers.net/

ILLINET

Illinois Library and Information Network, the statewide resource-sharing alliance of all members of the three regional library systems (RAILS, IHLS, CPLS). http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/library/libraries/illinet....

IOUG

Illinois OCLC Users Group.

IPLAR

Illinois Public Library Annual Report.

ISBE

Illinois State Board of Education. https://www.isbe.net/

I-Share

Consortial catalog of more than 70 members of CARLI. https://vufind.carli.illinois.edu/all/vf/Search/Home

ISL

Illinois State Library, an office of the Secretary of State. Funding for Illinois library systems (including RAILS) is provided through grants from ISL, with funds appropriated by Illinois General Assembly. http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/library/

L

L2

Library Learning. The statewide continuing education and meeting calendar, and directory of libraries. https://www.librarylearning.info

LACONI

Library Administrators Conference of Northern Illinois. LACONI provides educational opportunities for library staff, including RAILS members. http://laconi.net/

LIMRiCC

Library Insurance Management and Risk Control Combination. An insurance consortium for libraries and library organizations. RAILS is a member. http://www.limricc.org

LINKin

A consortium of 10 libraries in the RAILS area. https://www.linkin-libraries.org/

LLSAP

Local Library System Automation Program. Regional shared catalog automation systems that are coordinated and supported by the Illinois library systems.

LSTA

Library Services and Technology Act. Provides federal funds for library projects, which are administered in Illinois by the Illinois State Library.

M

MLS

Metropolitan Library System, one of the predecessor regional library systems that merged to form RAILS. Also: Master of Library Science.

N

NFP

Not-for-profit organization.

NIC

Northern Illinois Cooperative. A shared catalog consortium for public libraries in the north-central area of RAILS. https://www.niclibraries.org/

NILRC

Network of Illinois Resources in Community Colleges. https://www.nilrc.org/

NSLS

North Suburban Library System, one of the predecessor regional library systems that merged to form RAILS.

O

OMA

Open Meetings Act. This law ensures that the public has access to the deliberations of government bodies, including public library boards and the RAILS Board. RAILS provides a FOIA/OMA Hotline to help members with questions about compliance.

P

PALS

Prairie Area Library System, one of the predecessor regional library systems that merged to form RAILS.

PLC

Pinnacle Library Cooperative. A shared catalog consortium of several public libraries in the Joliet area. http://pinnaclelibraries.org/

Polycom

A vendor that makes the videoconferencing equipment used by RAILS.

PPC

Public Policy Committee (Illinois Library Association). https://www.ila.org/about/committee/13/public-policy-committee-ppc

PrairieCat

One of the LLSAP shared catalogs in RAILS. https://www.prairiecat.info/

R

RAILS

Reaching Across Illinois Library System. One of three Illinois regional library systems. Formed in 2011 through the merger of Alliance Library System, DuPage Library System, Metropolitan Library System, North Suburban Library System, and Prairie Area Library System. RAILS is a multitype system (serving academic, public, school, and special libraries). https://www.railslibraries.info

RAILS Live

RAILS' online video streaming venue. RAILS board meetings, member update sessions, and some continuing education events are webcast live here. http://live.railslibraries.info

RBP

Reciprocal borrowing program. Reciprocal borrowing allows persons to borrow materials directly from ILLINET public libraries.

ROE

Regional Office of Education.

RSA

Resource Sharing Alliance NFP, one of the LLSAP shared catalogs in RAILS. http://rsacat.alsrsa.org/

S

SHARE Illinois

Share Holdings and Resources Easily. A resource-sharing collaboration among several shared catalog consortia in northern Illinois. https://shareillinois.info

SLA

Special Libraries Association. The SLA Illinois Chapter offers professional development and networking opportunities to members. http://illinois.sla.org/

SOS

Secretary of State (State Librarian of Illinois).

standalone

A library that has its own automated catalog, as opposed to being in a consortium with a shared catalog.

SWAN

System Wide Automated Network, one of the LLSAP shared catalogs in RAILS. https://catalog.swanlibraries.net/client/en_US/default

T

TBBS

Talking Book and Braille Service (Illinois State Library). Provides audio and Braille library service via mail or download to Illinois residents who are unable to read standard print material due to a visual or physical disability. http://www.ilbph.org/

V

videoconference

A video/audio meeting among people at multiple locations. RAILS has a number of videoconference locations that are used for meetings and continuing education programs.

VTEL

A vendor of videoconference equipment that was formerly used by the regional library systems. (Note: Anyone at RAILS who says "VTEL" really means "videoconference".)