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Sociology 3380: Urban Inequality: Subject

Library Research Guide

How to find encyclopedias

Library guides exist for many subjects and classes. Most of them include selected background sources or subject encyclopedias for each topic area.

Library catalogs can be searched with keyword 'encyclopedia?' (the ? allows for variant word endings, e.g. encyclopedia or encyclopedias) combined with a subject such as 'urban' or 'sociology' or 'women.'

Reference staff can also provide helpful suggestions!


Encyclopedias are great for:

  •  locating authoritative, high quality information
  •  choosing a topic
  •  educating yourself quickly
  •  gaining background information easily (major ideas, theories, events, people)
  •  identifying variant spellings, vocabulary, terminology
  •  finding a bibliography (list of selected, important  references for further reading)

Online encyclopedia collections

Subject encyclopedias