Subject specific encyclopedias, handbooks and dictionaries are a good way to build foundational knowledge at the beginning of a project. These reference books will give you a general overview of a topic or subject, along with at least several sources (articles or books) to find more information.
The library has access to hundreds of online encyclopedias and dictionaries. You will find them along side their print counterparts in the SLU Libraries' catalog. The items below represent large collections of encyclopedia and reference materials. You can use them to search across many titles at once.
The Congressional Research Service (CRS) is a branch of the Library of Congress which produces non-partisan reports on any issue a member of Congress requests. These are known as CRS reports and can be a great way to quickly get the background on a large issue that may have come before Congress in one form or another. CRS reports will include a history of legislation and administrative policy on an issue, as well as an overview of the issue itself.
These are a small sampling of relevant, full-text digital subject encyclopedias. Search the SLU Libraries Catalog or try one of the digital reference collections listed in the middle column to find more digital and print encyclopedias.
SLU Libraries Catalog - Your first stop! Here you'll find books from Pius, Law and Medical Center Libraries, as well as the Libraries' Locust Street Facility. You'll also find journals, government publications, audio books, DVDs, and eBooks and other resources you can access online.
MOBIUS Catalog - This union catalog includes university and college libraries from across Missouri. If SLU doesn't have the book you need, requesting it from MOBIUS is the fastes way to get your hands on it. You can also visit MOBIUS libraries in person to check out books. For example, if Washington University has a book you need, you can go check it out in person using your SLU ID & banner number instead of waiting a few days for it to be delivered for you on campus.
WorldCat - The world is your oyster! Well, at least North America. Search WorldCat to find & borrow books from all over North America (and occaisionally farther afield). Books requested through WorldCat can take 6-14 days, so plan ahead!