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Note: Your favorite library probably has access to Ex Libris Primo or a similar system.


General Reference, Foundations

Portal, Dictionary, Thesaurus, Glossary, Encyclopedia, Introduction, Outline, Directory, Search


Locating Fair and Balanced Sources (Internet Public Library)

These are organized by a classification scheme developed exclusively for Cosma. More…



Library of Congress Research and Reference Services
Library of Congress Reference Shelf
Library of Congress Alcove 9: An Annotated List of Reference Websites

Refdesk Reference Shelves on the Net
Refdesk Essential Reference Tools
Refdesk Quick Reference
Refdesk Indispensable Links

Wolfram Alpha

Project Gutenberg

Wikipedia’s Reference Desk
Wikipedia’s Reference Works Category
Wikipedia’s General Reference Portal


reference : something (as a sign or indication) that refers a reader or consulter to another source of information (as a book or passage) — Webster See also Oxford, OneLook, Free Dictionary, Wiktionary, InfoPlease, Word Reference


Roget’s II (, Merriam-Webster Thesaurus, Visuwords


Reference work A reference work is a compendium of information, usually of a specific type, compiled in a book for ease of reference.Reference work. — Wikipedia

Ready reference are reference materials used in answering reference questions that can be answered by a reference librarian in one or two minutes by providing a fact or piece of information found in a single source shelved for convenience in a separate location near the reference desk rather than in the reference stacks Reference work. — Online Dictionary for Library and Information Science



WorldCat (OAIster) Library of Congress, UPenn Online Books, Open Library



Great Sites for Kids (ALA)


OER Commons: Open Educational Resources
Open Education Consortium


Reference Librarian (US Occupational Outlook Handbook)


General Reference Works (David Nordloh, American Literary Scholarship)
Google Scholar


ISBNdb, Google Books


Library of Congress Research and Reference Services
Library of Congress Reference Shelf
Library of Congress Alcove 9: An Annotated List of Reference Websites




Reference Librarianship in Star Wars
Jedi Master ‘Madame’ Jocasta Nu



Latest News - Recent Updates Latest News - Recent Updates

  • Spark a Lifelong Adventure of Learning
    on November 21, 2017 at 4:00 pm

    News from the Library of Congress November 21, 2017 Spark a Lifelong Adventure of Learning This year, for the first time, the Library of Congress is participating in #GivingTuesday—a global giving movement. On Tuesday, November 28, we are asking you to make a gift to spark a lifelong adventure of learning. Here's more information. The Library of Congress is your library, your gateway to understanding the world. There is so much to discover, not only the […]

  • Latest News: Library Acquires Rare Mesoamerican...
    on November 21, 2017 at 3:01 pm

    The Library of Congress has acquired the Codex Quetzalecatzin, one of the very few Mesoamerican manuscripts to survive from the 16th century. Click here for more information. […]

  • Latest News: Three New Educational Apps
    on November 17, 2017 at 3:19 pm

    The Library of Congress, in collaboration with various educational organizations, today announced the launch of three web- and mobile-based applications related to Congress and civic participation for use in K-12 classrooms. Click here for more information. […]

  • Latest News: Bennett Honored in Gershwin Prize...
    on November 15, 2017 at 8:10 pm

    Celebrated performer Tony Bennett, the 2017 recipient of the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song, will be applauded and serenaded by some of the nation’s top artists at an all-star celebration in the nation’s capital Wednesday evening, Nov. 15. Click here for more information. […]

  • NEW: Lincoln Papers in Full Color
    on November 8, 2017 at 7:11 pm

    Abraham Lincoln’s papers from his time as a lawyer, congressman and the 16th president are now online in full color in a new presentation after a multi-year digitization effort at the Library of Congress. Click here for more information. […]