What Do You Know?
You probably already know a little something about the topic you chose, but it's important to find out more in order to write an intelligent research paper and/or make a good argument.
- What do I know?
- What can I find out?
Reference resources help you find out more!
Library Research Guides lead you to the best resources to use when searching for information on your topic.
Always check to see if there's a Research Guide on your topic.
• Look up your keywords in the indexes to subject encyclopedias.
• Read articles in these encyclopedias to set the context for your research.
• Note relevant items in the bibliographies at the end of the encyclopedia articles.
• Additional background information may be found in your lecture notes, textbooks, and reserve readings.
Understanding Your Topic - Where to Look
Once you have chosen a topic for your paper, use general reference sources to get background information on your topic. Reference books such as the encyclopedias, dictionaries and handbooks, and the current issue titles are a good starting point for your research because they help you become better acquainted with your topic.
See the lists below for some selected reference sources available online and in print. Ask a librarian if you need help finding more resources.
Online reference resources require login for off-campus use. Enter your Cerritos College login when prompted. For more login information see the Database Login page.
Selected Library Reference Sources - Online
Here are some of the library's online reference resources which can help you get some background information on your topic. These resources are available on and off campus.
Selected Library Reference Sources - Print
Here are some reference books that are located in the library's Reference area. Although they cannot be checked out, students are able to photocopy pages.