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PHILOSOPHY: SUBJECT GUIDE: Getting Started

Starting points for research in Philosophy

Select Print Reference Resources

These reference resources are available in print format on the first floor of Collins Library.

Cambridge Histories

The Cambridge Histories series is an indispensable reference collection with over 300 titles spanning 15 subject areas, including philosophy. Each (often multi-volume) history provides a big-picture perspective of its subject, introduces readers to existing scholarship, and proposes new trends in the field. Below are some representative examples at Collins.

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy is a dynamic, online scholarly encyclopedia in which entries are kept up to date by an expert or groups of experts in the field.

Online Encyclopedias

Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy

Research Methods

What's a tertiary source?

Tertiary sources are excellent starting points!  They consist of information synthesized from primary and secondary sources.  Examples include:

  • Almanacs
  • Chronologies
  • Dictionaries and Encyclopedias
  • Directories
  • Fact books
  • Guidebooks
  • Indexes, abstracts, bibliographies used to locate primary and secondary sources
  • Manuals
  • Textbooks

These resources give you succinct overviews of your topic, explain scholarly arguments, point out interesting questions, and refer you to especially key sources. 

Films on Demand

Films on Demand

Films on Demand is a streaming video service, which provides access to a broad spectrum of educational and documentary content.  

Featured Online Resources

Additional Online Reference Resources

Need Help?

This subject guide highlights only a small portion of the many resources available to you.  If you're not finding what you need, don't hesitate to contact Katy!


Katherine "Katy" Curtis, Humanities Librarian
email: kcurtis@pugetsound.edu
Schedule an appointment
tel: (253) 879-3672
office:  Collins Library 140

If you can't find Katy, remember there are several ways to get help with your research

And don't forget about the Ask a Librarian 24/7 service: Anytime, anywhere! This instant messaging reference service lets you chat with a librarian no matter what time it is. Puget Sound librarians can email you to follow up if you leave your email address.