Why Use Reference Books?
This video explains common uses for encyclopedias and dictionaries.
- Basic definitions and facts of a topic
- Test assumptions about the topic
- Find Keywords for searches
- Narrow your topic
- Find secondary & primary sources on your topic
Encyclopedias & Dictionaries
Search Primo for encyclopedias & dictionaries.
- Combine topic keywords and the word dictionary or encyclopedia in CUW Library Search
2. In the search results, under Format, choose the best options and Apply filters.
There are 3 possible locations in the library: CUW Main stacks, CUW Reference, or Online
Note: CUW Reference Books are for in-library use only.
Online Reference Books
Online encyclopedias & dictionaries come in a few formats.
- Some online encyclopedias & dictionaries will provide an alphabetical table of contents. Open the list and select an entry:
- Some reference books provide a search box to find topics. Search for keywords and choose the best entry from the results.
OR Click the date hyperlink to see a list of entries.
Databases with Encyclopedias
To find entries, use the same search technique as Primo:
Then, click on an entry title from the search results.
Again, it might be helpful to filter your source type to Reference books: