Skip to main content

Online Nursing RN to BSN Research Guide: Find Reference Info

Reference Resources

Nursing Reference Resources

What is a reference resource?

A reference resource, also known as a background resource, can be an encyclopedia, dictionary, atlas, a subject encyclopedia such as a maternal nursing encyclopedia or a medical dictionary. Reference resources provide overviews of topics that can range from a brief paragraph to 4-5 pages, a definition, or description. While Wikipedia may have some entries that are accurate and useful, many faculty prefer their students to use reference sources in the library. In college, using a subject encyclopedia provides additional information compared to general encyclopedias like Britannica or World Book. While there are a number of reference resources in print (physical format); we have access to many resources through two publishers, Gale and Credo. In the medical/nursing area both resources are worth searching. The links can be found by clicking the digital Reference Resources link in the Reference Resource box.