Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

ASIAN STUDIES: SUBJECT GUIDE: Getting Started

Starting points for research in Asian Studies.

Selected Print Reference

Recommended Starting Points: Subject Encyclopedias

Subject Encyclopedias are scholarly works written by experts on a variety of topics. The articles are typically longer and more detailed than general encyclopedias. The background information provides a good starting point as you begin the research process. Subject encyclopedias can help guide you with:

  • Understanding the scope of a topic
  • Suggesting ideas for narrowing a topic
  • Identifying key concepts, terms, dates and names
  • Listing subject areas related to a topic
  • Recommending sources for further exploration

Gale Virtual Reference Library

Gale Virtual Reference Library includes the full text of over 100 subject encyclopedias spanning multiple disciplines.

Online Encyclopedias

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.