Consulting the reference collection is a good way to start a research project or paper. A reference work, like an encyclopedia, will provide a preliminary exploration of a topic.
It provides a description of the topic, background information & context, and sometimes a summary of research on the topic.. A reference work may facilitate brainstorming for synonyms and keywords of important concepts in the research question. A reference work can also help in the creation of an outline. Start of keyword lists.
Often reference works have extensive bibliographies, pointing to other resources and experts in the field.
There are two types of reference tools:
Self-contained - dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks, biographical information
Locating tools - those items that tell you "where to find it", such as indexes and bibliographies
Speed Library Reference Collection includes dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks, and bibliographies, etc. The selection below is a representative sample of the reference works available to you. These books may be found in the Reference Room on the library main Floor. Ready Reference materials (as indicated) are found at the reference desk on 2nd floor. Use MICAL, the online catalog to find additional materials related to your topic
Almanac of American Education
Deskbook Encyclopedia of American School Law
Yearbook of Education Law