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ICEAP: Reference Resources

Your Guide to Cape Breton University Library



ref·er·ence noun \ˈre-fərn(t)s, ˈre-f(ə-)rən(t)s\ 
: a work (as a dictionary or encyclopedia) containing useful facts or information

Why Use Reference Resources?

Encyclopedias, dictionaries, and handbooks provide definitions, background information, introductions, or topic overviews.  This is especially useful to:

  1. learn about a new topic
  2. identify a topic for an essay
  3. identify terms you can use when searching for more information
  4. locate more information using bibliographies


Locating the Best Reference Resource

There are many print and electronic reference resources available in our library. Print reference resources are located on the library's main floor. Most electronic resources must be used in the library.

Reference books cannot be borrowed, but you are welcome to photocopy pages useful to your studies. 

As you stroll through the reference collection, you might ask yourself, "How can I find the best book for my research?".

There are several things you can do:

  1. Review the library's subject guides. Click the Getting Started/Reference tab to locate subject-specific reference items.
  2. Look at the call numbers on the books you've found; look for a trend and go to that area of the reference collection and browse.
  3. See a reference librarian for assistance.

CREDO Reference


There are many dictionaries available in print and electronically. This small selection of dictionaries illustrates that variety.

Reference Books

Many of the library's encyclopedias are subject-specific; this selection of titles illustrates that variety.