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Chemical Engineering

Research guide for library and internet information resources in Chemical Engineering.

Introduction: Encyclopedias and Other Sources of Background Information

Are you familiar with your topic?   If your answer is "no" or "maybe", then you need to do two things before starting your literature search: 

  1. Fill in your knowledge gaps so you are able to effectively describe the topic in searches and be able recognize appropriate content in the search results.  
  2. Find reference sources that contain definitions and descriptions in that area, so you'll quickly be able to refer to them as you are doing your literature search. 

Encyclopedias, handbooks and sometimes upper level textbooks provide background information summarizing the important points of a subject.   You should find and read this background information before you begin your literature search as it will help you determine the appropriate terminology for the search. As you are doing your literature search, you will come across terminology or topics that are unfamiliar to you; these resources will bring you up-to-speed, so bookmark this guide so you can quickly return to this page of resources.    

On this page, there are 3 sections: 

  1. Introductory encyclopedia articles
  2. Databases with introductory or background information  
  3. Specific books, such as encyclopedia, handbooks and upper level textbooks, containing background information. 

Introductory Information from General Encyclopedias

Databases with Introductory Information

Encyclopedias and Handbooks

Hours and Locations