Skip to main content

ENGLISH_105-6: Writing about Diversity, Identity & Community (Hirsch): Find Background Info

Finding Background and Facts on Your Topic

Subject-specific encyclopedias, along with providing important facts and topic overviews, can serve to familiarize with concepts and terminologies related to various topics. They may also include bibliographies or cited references lists at the end that can serve as additional sources on a topic.
In addition, books can provide broad but also in-depth information on topics.  Browsing book chapters or table of contents can help direct you.

Librarian

Jeannette Moss's picture
Jeannette Moss
Contact:
University Library
2 North (Core) Rm. 2303
1970 Campus Drive
Evanston, IL 60208
847-491-2169

Dictionaries and Encyclopedias

Encyclopedias are alphabetically arranged collections of articles that provide background information on key concepts, theories, and measures. Dictionaries provide definitions of words, thus helping to clarify terminology used in the field.  Here are just a few databases that each search across hundreds of subject-specific encyclopedias and dictionaries.

NUsearch for books and background sources

Start with NUsearch, either here, or on the Library homepage, to search across library collections of books, video, articles, background information, and more.  

**Once you find a book in NUsearch, if its location is in Main Library stacks, check the Book Location Guide to see where to physically locate it on the shelf.**