4.5 Finding reference material and background information

Use reference material to find background information and basic readings on the topic. Reference material such as dictionaries and encyclopaedias may be used to:

  • define or clarify terminology
  • obtain an overview of a theoretical area
  • locate key readings on a specific topic

Reference material should be regarded as a starting point, rather than the only source for research material. Increasingly, you will find these resources available online. They are all listed in the Library's catalogue, in the subject guides or under the link 'Databases and Electronic Resources'.

If you cannot find background material, ask your Academic Liaison Librarian for suggestions.