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Research Guides

ENGL 199D / ENVIR 100: Interdisciplinary Writing/Natural Science (Miller): Background Sources

Why Use Background Sources?

Encyclopedias help you figure out the who, what & where of a topic. Knowing the who, what & where of a topic is the first step in researching a topic and discovering the "how" and "why". Encyclopedias and dictionaries can provide background information and can be used to identify key people, events and dates which can then be used as search terms for finding additional information. Many also provide a jumpstart on your research by listing related readings.​ Both print and online encyclopedias are listed below.

Useful online encyclopedia collections: Gale Ebooks, Sage Reference Online, & Oxford Reference Online.

Background Sources - Environment

Background Sources - Activism & Social Movements