After you identify your research topic and some keywords that describe it, find and read articles in subject encyclopedias, dictionaries, and handbooks. These articles will help you understand the context (historical, cultural, disciplinary) of your topic. They are the foundation supporting further research. The most common background sources are subject encyclopedias and dictionaries from our print and online reference collection. Class textbooks also provide definitions of terms and background information.
Bibliographies are invaluable resources for researchers as they list the literature of a subject. You can find bibliographies in textbooks, books, journal articles, to name a few. Found at the end of the publication, bibliographies can save you hours of research as they can lead you to relevant resources for your research.