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HOW TO: Get Started on a Research Project: Reference Sources

This guide gives suggestions and resources to help students as they begin a research project.

Using Background Readings

Reference sources such as specialized encyclopedias, dictionaries, and handbooks are good places to begin research on a topic.  Articles and entries in these publications often are written by scholars in the field.  These kinds of resources can provide:     • background information     • topic overviews       • basic facts about a topic       • definitions of related terms            •  lists of additional sources and recommended readings

This page provides links to several databases that are useful to locate reference sources.

Specialized Encyclopedias and Dictionaries