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TOPIC: Physics

Why Reference Sources?

Reference resources include publications such as: dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks, biographies, directories, and atlases. They are published in print or electronically and are often discipline-specific.  They provide a broad overview and background information of a topic. They help you understand the key issues, history, and sometimes, latest debates on a topic without going through dozens of books, journal articles, and other materials. They can also help you develop a mind map on a topic and learn keywords and terminologies for further research.

Key Features of Reference Sources:

  • contain broad overviews of topics
  • confirm facts
  • explain background and have definitions
  • provide a focus on a topic for an essay or assignment
  • provide search terms and key names for use when searching databases 
  • have many references to additional resources

Reasons Why to use Reference Sources

Print Reference

These are located on the shelf in the Reference section of the Library:

Online Reference

Collections or individual reference books available online.  Just click the links below and search for your topic.