Thanks to reference librarian Kristen Mastel, I came across this article about what library terms our patrons commonly use/understand.
Here are some of the highlights:
- "Common correctly understood terms include "find books", "find articles" and other combinations using natural language target words that correspond to the end product the user is seeking."
- Words that patrons don't commonly understand: "database," "library catalog," "e-journals," "index," "interlibrary loan", "periodical," "serial," "reference," and "resource."
Just something to keep in mind as the public face of the library . . . when in doubt, try to use simple, neutral (non-library specific) language if you have a confused patron.
Here's a link to the article, just in case you're interested: http://lj.libraryjournal.com/2012/03/academic-libraries/users-dont-know-what-libraries-are-talking-about-studies-find/