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Joint Publications Research Service (JPRS) Collection at UM Libraries

JPRS is a government organization established in 1957 to supply the government with translations of unclassified foreign documents. This is important source material for research in the social sciences, science, political science & intl relations.

Transdex Microfiche 1975 – 1983

Gov Docs Computer Room, 4th Floor, McKeldin Library
Transdex Microfiche are issued by Bell and Howell Information Company. Though microfiche begin having SuDoc call numbers in 1981, the microfiche are still organized by JPRS number during this time period and are filed after PREX 7.26: in microfiche cabinets 19 and 20. *Example: Transdex #63778

SuDoc Microfiche – PREX 7.14:x thru PREX 7.23:x 1984 – 1989

Gov Docs Computer Room, 4th Floor, McKeldin Library
Though still issued and indexed by Bell and Howell, this range of microfiche is organized by SuDoc call number. Different geographical regions and subjects were given a different call number, and are ordered as such. On each sheet of microfiche is the following information:

  • JPRS-SSA-86-036
  • PREX 7.20/2:86-036

In this example, the call number PREX 7.20/2 is the equivalent of the JPRS series code SSA (Sub-Saharan Africa). The remaining numbers are the year (1986) and the document issue number (036). The microfiche are placed in order by their SuDoc numbers, which is the second number listed on each microfiche sheet.

SuDoc Microfiche - PREX 7.13:x 1989 – 1996

Gov Docs Computer Room, 4th Floor, McKeldin Library
In 1989, the Superintendent of Documents discontinued the use of a classification system for JPRS publication. They began filing all documents under the call number PREX 7.13:x. Some microfiche during these years have the same SuDoc call numbers and series codes as listed before. However, in later years, the SuDoc number begins to incorporate the entire series code into the call number. *Example: PREX 7.13:CAR-92-012

SuDoc Print – PREX 7.13:x 1987 – 1996

Gov Docs Computer Room, 4th Floor, McKeldin Library
This print collection contains much of the same material created for the microfiche. Though its microfiche counterpart is separated by call number (PREX 7.14:x thru PREX 7.23:x), the print collection is under PREX 7.13:x. As in the microfiche collection, the 'x' in the call number is the same series code, which consists of the JPRS regional code, the year of publication, and the issue number for the year.
*Example: PREX 7.13:JPRS-CRF-87-012

Note: there are large sections missing from the print collection. An inventory of the issues available in print is located in a binder at the Gov Docs Information Desk.

Indexes for JPRS Microfiche and Print Collection, 1975 – 1996

There is a single index (published in both in print and microfiche) for this area of the collection:

This index is available in microfiche from 1975 – 1996. The microfiche format of the index cumulates annually The microfiche are located in the Gov Docs Computer Lab on the 4th floor of McKeldin Library in cabinet 35.

There is a print version of the index available from 1988 – 1996. However, it is published monthly and has no year-end cumulative edition. For the annual cumulative index, refer to the microfiche format of the Transdex Index. In July 1995, the print version of this index retains the name Transdex Index, but the subtitle indicates it as an index to FBIS publications. Despite the title, this index covers JPRS documents until June 1996.

This index is divided into five sections:

  1. Statistics Listing – a list of words and the number of times they appear in the year's publications.
  2. Series and Ad Hoc Listing – a listing of the titles issued that year.
  3. Bibliographic Listing – a complete list of the year's publications. This listing is in order by JPRS series code. Each document is given a page number, which indicates either the page of microfiche or print on which the document is located.
  4. Keyword Listing – this is a listing of words and the documents in which they appear. Unlike a subject index, these words are listed as natural language. If searching for documents using the keyword listing, be sure to look up all possible synonyms and various forms of the word.
  5. Personal Names Listing – a list of names and the documents in which they appear. Names are listed exactly as they are written in the document, so when searching for a person, be sure to look up all possible variations of a name.

Until 1981, JPRS documents were created with a JPRS number, as described earlier. At this time, the Superintendent of Documents began classifying documents and giving them SuDoc call numbers. Accordingly, in 1982, the Transdex Index began publishing a Cross Reference Index. This index gives the JPRS title (identical to the titles in the Serials and Ad Hoc Listing), and the corresponding SuDoc call number.

NOTE: While JPRS documents began having SuDoc call numbers in 1981, our collection has them filed by JPRS number through December 1983. After that date, all documents are filed by their given SuDoc call number.


When locating JPRS in microfiche from the Transdex Index:

1975 – 1983 Microfiche are shelved in JPRS number or series code order. Use the JPRS number and page number given in each index to locate a given document.
1984 – 1989 The microfiche are shelved under the call numbers PREX 7.14:x through PREX 7.23:x, where 'x' is the JPRS series code. Use the Cross Reference Index after locating a document in any other index. Once a title is located in another index, note both the JPRS series code and page number. Using the JPRS series code, refer to the Serials and Ad Hoc Listing to obtain the correct title. Use the title in the Cross Reference Index to find the correct SuDoc call number.
1989 – 1996 All documents are shelved under the SuDoc call number PREX 7.13:x, where 'x' is the JPRS series code.

When locating JPRS in print from the Transdex Index:
The only necessary information is the JPRS series code and page number. All documents are shelved under the SuDoc call number PREX 7.13:x, where 'x' is the JPRS series code.