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Information Sources: Encyclopedias

A guide to accessing information sources at The Alice Smith School


Encyclopedias are a quick and easy way to pick a topic and start your research

Why should I start my research with encyclopedias?

  • Because it's the easiest way to pick a topic --- saving you time!
  • Because most encyclopedia articles are short --- saving you time!
  • Because it's the easiest way to get good search terms --- saving you time!
  • Because it's the easiest way to get acquainted with your subject!

Encyclopedia Britannica

Encyclopedias such as Encyclopædia Britannica have notable authors working for them and may be cited as a secondary source.

KLASS subscribes to this encyclopedia and when on campus no login is required. For off campus access please follow this link.


Wikipedia can be a great tool for learning and researching information. However, as with all reference works, not everything in Wikipedia is accurate, comprehensive, or unbiased.

Due to the nature of it editorial mechanism in most academic institutions Wikipedia is unacceptable as a source for facts in a research paper.