The IAEA has been actively promoting performance of probabilistic safety assessment (PSA) studies for research reactors. From 1986 to 1988 the IAEA undertook a Coordinated Research Programme (CRP) on PSA for research reactors which helped promote use of PSA and foster a broad exchange of information. Although the basic methodological approach in performing a research reactor PSA is understood, some unresolved issues, data availability being among them, still exist. To address the issue on the international level, the IAEA initiated a new CRP on ``Data Acquisition for Research Reactors PSA Studies``. The aim of the CRP is to develop a data collection system and generate research reactor specific reliability data for use in PSAs. The achieve this aim a set of precise definitions should be adopted. A set of definitions developed specifically for research reactors and covering classification of equipment and failure terms, reliability parameters, failure modes and other terms necessary for data collection and processing is presented in this document which is based on discussions during the first meeting of the CRP held in Vienna in October 1989 and during the second meeting held in Beijing, China, in October 1990. Refs and figs.