Subject Specialist
Picture: Research Librarians

Research Librarians
Ask a librarian!
Tel: (508) 286 3700

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Getting Started: Reference Sources
Kickstart research of a new (or new-to-you) topic by looking for overviews in a reference database. 

General Reference Works

Biography in Context [Gale] Restricted Resource Some full text available Resource contains images
Biographies from several reference sources, including Marquis Who's Who, with related full text articles, images and links to hand-picked web sites. Searchable by name, occupation, nationality, ethnicity, birth/death dates and places, or gender, as well as keyword and full text. Access provided by the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

Britannica Online Restricted Resource Some full text available Resource contains images Resource contains video Resource contains audio
Online equivalent of the Encyclopaedia Britannica. Also includes articles not included in the print edition, the Merriam-Webster Dictionarythe Britannica Book of the Year, and an editorially selected directory of links.

Credo Reference Restricted Resource Some full text availableopenURL Resource contains images
Digital library of over 700 cross-searchable reference books in a wide variety of disciplines. A great starting point for your research that also leads you right to the library catalog and other databases.

Wikipedia Unrestricted Resource Some full text available Resource contains images
Collaboratively built general-purpose encyclopedia, unmatched in its breadth (the English-language version alone now boasts well over 3 million articles), but potentially not always representing the most reliable or state-of-the-art points of view. Available in a multitude of languages (including all taught at Wheaton). Also a great resource for visual sources. 

Subject-Specific Reference Works

Also check out subject-specific reference works, either in the print reference collection or in electronic formats (listed under the library subject guides for the respective subject). 
Finding Books, Videos, Sound Recordings, etc.
HELIN Catalog
​To find books and e-books, audiovisual materials, board games, and other items held by the Wallace Library or our partners in the HELIN consortium, search the catalog: 

Advanced Search

Books in the Wallace Library are arranged according to the Library of Congress Classification, which sorts books by broad subject areas: 

A - General Works
B - Philosophy, Religion, Psychology
C - Auxiliary Sciences of History
D - World History and History of Europe, Africa, Asia, and Oceania
E - U.S. and Canadian History
F - U.S. Local History and Latin American History
G - Geography and Anthropology
H - Social Sciences
J - Political Science
K - Law
L - Education
M - Music
N - Fine Arts
P - Language and Literature
Q - Science, Math
R - Medicine
S - Agriculture
T - Technology
U - Military Science
V - Naval Science
Z - Library Science

You'll find most of our books in the stacks on the lowest level of the library. The Fine Arts Collection (i.e. the Ns), however, is located on the two mezzanines. 

For more information on how to find specific kinds of materials, check the "How Do I Find...?" pages on the Wallace Library website
Finding Articles: General Databases
Unless you already know that you will find the most relevant materials to your topic in the specialized databases you can find in our subject-specific research guides, we recommend that you begin your search in one of the following multi-disciplinary databases: 

Key Databases

Academic OneFile Restricted Resource Some full text availableopenURL
Indexes and abstracts articles on subjects such as agriculture, anthropology, arts, business, communications, economics, law, political science, psychology, religion, general sciences, and current events. Includes many full text articles or links to full text; 1980 - present. Access provided by the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

Scopus Restricted Resource openURL
Indexes and abstracts scientific, technical, medical, social sciences and some humanities literature and web resources. Includes citation tracking and links to full text articles. Early 1900's - present for some abstracts; 1996 - present for citation tracking.

Google Scholar Unrestricted Resource openURL
Google Scholar provides a simple way to broadly search for scholarly literature. From one place, you can search across many disciplines and sources: peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, abstracts and articles, from academic publishers, professional societies, preprint repositories, universities and other scholarly organizations. Note: If you are not on campus, configure Library Links to see if your item is available through Wallace Library. 

Additional Databases

Pascal & Francis Unrestricted Resource
Bibliographic database for sciences / technology (Pascal) and social sciences / humanities (Francis), compliled by the Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS) of France, covering journal articles and conference proceedings. Formerly a subscription database, freely accessible since 2016. 1972-2015.

DART-Europe Unrestricted Resource Some full text available
Discovery portal for electronic disserations and theses in all fields submitted to research universities in 28 European countries. 

Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations Unrestricted Resource Some full text available
Still somewhat under construction, this search engine aims to make electronic disserations and theses from around the globe available to researchers. 
Finding Articles: Journal Repositories
To search for a specific periodical, use the Journal Finder, or browse or search through some of the repositories the Wallace Library subscribes to: 

JSTOR Restricted Resource Some full text availableopenURL
Full text backfiles of over 2,500 core scholarly journals in humanities, social sciences, and sciences. To help you navigate and search JSTOR, check their helpful how-to guide (PDF). 

Note: JSTOR includes 16 current titles, but for all others, JSTOR does not contain the most recent 1-7 years of content. Many of these titles are continued in the Library's print and/or electronic subscriptions, however. Check the Journal Finder for complete holdings information.

Project Muse Restricted Resource Some full text available
Full-text current and archival articles from 670+ scholarly journals from major university presses covering literature and criticism, history, performing arts, cultural studies, education, philosophy, political science, gender studies, and more. The Library's subscription also includes over 7,000 e-books. Updated continually.

ScienceDirect Restricted Resource Some full text available
Full text of over 2,500 Elsevier journals and 11 encyclopedias in the sciences and social sciences. Coverage for most titles is 1993 - or 1995 - present. 

Wiley Online Library Restricted Resource Some full text availableopenURL Resource contains images
The Library's 2018 license for online Wiley journals includes over 1,800 titles in various disciplines such as anthropology, biological sciences, business & finance, chemistry, earth sciences, economics, environmental sciences, geophysics, higher education, history, law & criminology, medical sciences, philosophy, physics, political science, psychology, and sociology.
English Language
OED Online Restricted Resource
Full text of the 20 volumes of the OED, the 3 volume Additions Series, as well as at least 1,000 new and revised entries added quarterly. The OED is the leading authority on the evolution of the English language over the last millenium, providing information on the meaning, history, and pronunciation of over half a million words.

Foreign Languages
Oxford Chinese Dictionary Ref. PL1455 .O88 2010 Restricted Resource
One-volume English-Chinese dictionary containing more than 300,000 word and phrase entries. 

Collins French Dictionary and Grammar Restricted Resource
French-English dictionary; via Credo Reference.

Collins German Dictionary Restricted Resource
Comprehensive German-English dictionary with more than 100,000 entries. 

Oxford-Duden German Dictionary Restricted Resource
With 300,000+ entries and 500,000+ translations, Oxford-Duden is one of the most comprehensive and well-regarded German-English dictionaries available. Call Number: ​Ref. PF3640 .O94 2005. 

Collins Italian Dictionary Restricted Resource Some full text available
English-Italian dictionary with 70,000+ entries. 

Collins Spanish Dictionary Restricted Resource
Comprehensive Spanish-English dictionary with over 100,000 entries.

Oxford Spanish Dictionary Ref. PC4640 .O94 2003 Restricted Resource
Extensive Spanish-English dictionary with over 300,000 entries in both European and Latin American Spanish. 

Dictionary of Untranslatables Restricted Resource
This is a dictionary of philosophical, literary, and political terms and concepts that defy easy--or any--translation from one language and culture to another. Drawn from more than a dozen languages, these terms are thoroughly examined in all their cross-linguistic and cross-cultural complexities.