How to Do Library Research

This set of pages has information on how to do library research. In all cases, once you have located sources, be sure to evaluate them, using the evaluation guides.

General Encyclopedias

The encyclopedias listed below are found in the Reference section of Morgan Library. The second part of this Web page has links to free Web encyclopedias. See Subject Encyclopedias for examples of specialized sources.

Academic American Encyclopedia. 21 vols. AE .A23 1998 Reference
Collier's Encyclopedia. 24 vols. AE 5 .C683 1996 Reference
Encyclopaedia Britannica. 32 vols. AE 5 .E 363 2005 Reference
Encyclopedia Americana. 30 vols. AE 5 .E 333 2001 Reference
Oxford Illustrated Encyclopedia. 9 vols. AE 5 .O94 1985 Reference

World Book Encyclopedia 22 vols. AE5 .W55 2012 Reference--Current favorite.

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  • Volumes entitled: The Physical World, The Natural World, World History from Earliest Times to 1800, World History from 1800 to the Present Day, Invention and Technology, Peoples and Cultures, The Universe, Index and Ready Reference.

The encyclopedias listed below are available on the Web.  These tend to have minimal detail, but will serve if just a quick definition or verification of a name or date is needed.

Encyclopedia Britannica. online encyclopedia.
InfoPlease encyclopedia with 57,000 articles from the Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth edition.  The dictionary has 125,000 entries. A lot of pop up ads in the dictionary.

Atlapedia Online
Full color maps and information about countries. Information about countries includes:  official name, capital, system of government, area, estimated 2000 population, location & geography, climate, people, demographic/vital statistics, religions, languages, eduction, modern history--World War II to 1993, currency, economy, main trading partners, main primary products, major industries, main exports, transport, communications, military.

This site has information about government heads from around 1800 to the present. Countries are grouped together alphabetically (with cross-references); scroll to the country of interest.  Contains lists of heads of state and heads of government (and, in certain cases, de facto leaders who don't occupy either of those formal positions) of all countries and territories.  Gives a chronology of events beginning with January 1996, by month.  Has link to political leaders 1945-2001 web page.
Detailed and useful site.  Search by the shape of the symbol, or its meaning (word index).  Includes more than 2,500 Western signs, arranged into 54 groups according to their graphic characteristics. 1,600 articles give their histories, uses, and meanings. For example, search by whether the axis (single or muliti) is symmetric or asymmetric, open or closed, lines are straight or curved (soft), and whether or not lines cross.

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