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Physics - Information Resources: Background Info

This is a guide to resources for physics research. It will lead you to databases with helpful journal articles, books, websites, and other resources.

Why background info?

You are assigned a research topic that you know almost nothing about, and Wikipedia isn't helping. What do you do? Find a subject encyclopedia!

Background sources (encyclopedias, dictionaries, etc.) provide summary and factual information. They generally contain well-established knowledge that provide a basic understanding on subjects. Use background sources to:

  • find basic concepts and viewpoints of the topic
  • get the historical context and relationships to other topics
  • identify and define specialized terms used to discuss the topic
  • find or verify data, facts, formulas, etc.

Online Encyclopedias & Dictionaries

Print Encyclopedias & Dictionaries