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Quick Reference Sources

This guide links to online sources that are useful for background information and quick facts.

Research Database

Dictionaries, Thesauri & Encyclopedias


A dictionary is a collection of words in one or more specific languages, listed alphabetically, with usage information, definitions, etymologies, phonetics, pronunciations, and other information.


An encyclopedia is a type of reference work a compendium holding a summary of information from either all branches of knowledge or a particular branch of knowledge.


A thesaurus is a book that lists words in groups of synonyms and related concepts.