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Last Updated: Jul 28, 2017 URL: http://libguides.husson.edu/content.php?pid=593717 Print Guide RSS Updates

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What Are Reference Books?

REFERENCE BOOKS DEFINED

"Where Should I Start My Research Paper?"

Reference Books provide a quick way to look something up. They are a good place to start a research paper.

DEFINITIONS and EXAMPLES:

Atlas

A book of maps with or without text.

Example: Rand McNally Atlas

Biographical Index

A book of information about people who are well known in a particular field.

Example: Who's Who

Dictionary

Definitions, spellings, and pronunciations of words, arranged in alphabetical order.

Example: The American Heritage Dictionary

Directory

The names and addresses as well as other facts about specific groups, persons, or organizations.

Example: Guide to Summer Camps

Encyclopedia

Information on just about every subject arranged in alphabetical order.

Example: Encyclopaedia Britannica

Gazetteer

A geographical index with the names of places and their locations.

Example: Chambers World Gazetteer: An A-Z of Geographical Information

Guidebook

Information and directions, often for travelers.

Example: Fodor's Travel Guides

Manual/Handbook

Instructions on how to do or make something.

Example: A Manual for Automotive Repair

Thesaurus

Synonyms, or near synonyms, for words as well as related terms.

Example: Roget's Thesaurus

Yearbook/Almanac

Current information on a wide range of topics.

Example: Guinness Book of World Records

 

Dictionaries, Thesaures, and More

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The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language
This newly updated edition of America's favorite dictionary features revised biographical and geographical entries as well as up-to-date charts and tables for topics such as world currencies and chemical elements.

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Merriam-Webster's Collegiate® Dictionary
The new Eleventh Edition of America's best-selling dictionary merges print, CD-ROM, and online formats to deliver unprecedented accessibility and flexibility at one affordable price. Fully revised print content features a significant number of clear and precise definitions and more than 10,000 new words and meanings. Over 40,000 usage examples, more than any other desk dictionary, provide expert guidance to help solve problems of confused and disputed usage.

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Roget's II the New Thesaurus
Roget's II: The New Thesaurus is Houghton Mifflin's easy to use, accurate, and authoritative English thesaurus. This essential reference offers users the resources of the English language to enhance the expressiveness and accuracy of their communications.

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The American Heritage Guide to Contemporary Usage and Style
This authoritative survey of English usage, grammar, and style offers guidance on almost any writing problem imaginable. Arranged in a single, easy-to-use A-Z list, the guide's entries include examples and quotations that show not only correct and incorrect usage but also the relative effectiveness of different expressions in context.

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Good Word Guide
Modern communications are breaking down distinctions between formal and informal English, raising ever more questions as to how to speak and write correctly. This fully updated edition of the bestselling Good Word Guide offers information and advice on spelling, grammar, punctuation, pronunciation, confusables and the latest buzzwords, and provides clear, straightforward answers to everyday language problems.

 

General Reference

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Key Terms in Literary Theory
This book provides precise definitions of terms and concepts in literary theory, along with explanations of the major movements and figures in literary and cultural theory and an extensive bibliography.

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The Chronology of American Literature - Daniel S. Burt
An authoritative reference and an ideal browser's guide, this book outlines the indispensable information in America's rich literary past - from major publications to lesser-known gems - while also identifying larger trends along the literary timeline.

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