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How do I find background information for my research?


What is background information?

Background information is generally information that helps you to understand how your topic fits in the larger scholarly conversation. Background information might also be called "tertiary sources" and includes sources like encylopedias, dictionaries, and handbooks. 

How do I find background information in LibGuides?

For help finding background information on a topic, please visit our LibGuides and find your discipline/concentration. 

Most LibGuides will have a "Background Info" tab, which should give you some suggested reference sources about your topic. These sources might be handbooks or encyclopedias to give you some background about the topic and help you come up with better search keywords. For example, in the History LibGuide below, there are links to electronic versions of handbooks, bibliographies, and other sources that could help you start to research your topic. 

History LibGuide Background Info page

How can I get more help with this?

If you need help finding background information or any other research, please visit the Information Desk or see our Get Help page for more contact options.

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