This is a list of various types of reference sources that can be found on the shelves or electronically at USC Upstate. If you know of a type of source that is not on the list and would like it to be added, please contact the librarian associated with this guide to make the suggestion.
The definitions below were compiled from the following sources: <http://library.uncfsu.edu/reference/IntroCollectBackgroundInformation.htm>
<http://lib.nmsu.edu/instruction/lsc311/01-02fall2002/typesofrefsources.PDF> Bolner, Myrtle & Gayle Poirier. The Research Process Books and Beyond. page 125 Kendall Hunt Pub, 1997.
This resource defines selected words and terms, confirms spelling, definition and pronunciation, explains how words are used, and helps to locate synonyms and antonyms.
This usually contains a single volume representing a specified year with a compilation of facts and statistics on a topic.
This contains a list of sources (books, articles, and more) about a specific subject or author.
This defines words and terms used by the two languages represented in the dictionary.
These sources provide a short summary of the lives of people, often with a focus on a particular group of people (women, scientists, historical figures, etc).
This work presents information that is arranged by date.
These sources give an alphabetical list of the principal keywords or phrases contained in another book with citations of the passages.
This is a compilation of information or a short account of that information.
This source gives contact information such as names, addresses, and telephone numbers.
This provides the history of words and how their meanings change.
An alphabetical list of geographic names identifying the nature and location of the thing, or place, named.
This is a book of maps along with geographical information about the contents of the resource.
These sets provide summaries of information and ideas in a comprehensive manner. They are useful for providing facts and obtaining a broad survey of a topic.
These sources provide detailed descriptions of places and are designed primarily for visitors or those unfamiliar with a particular area. Readers will find descriptions of road, places, or objects of interest, geographical facts and occasionally maps.
These provide a brief survey of a topic.
This source contains maps and descriptions of the represented areas as they were during the time period that is covered by the atlas.
An index lists citations to periodical articles, books, and proceedings and indicates where those resources can be found.
A manual explains how to do something, such as the manner in which something operates or the way in which an organization operates.
These atlases provide maps and information about a specific topic.
These sources focus on the vocabulary of a subject or discipline.
These sources contain articles on topics within a specific subject.
This source provides a comprehensive listing of words and terms along with definitions and helps to identify synonyms and antonyms.
A yearbook covers the trends and events of a specific year. It may be general in coverage or limited to a specific subject or geographical area.