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Michigan State University

Information Resources for Communication Studies: Finding Background Information

How do reference sources help with finding information?

Reference sources can help you:

  • Explore a topic: find out what has been said about this subject, trends, issues, etc.
  • Identify and define unfamiliar terms or people in your reading
  • Find references to other books and articles on the subject
  • Find specific keywords to use in online searches

Finding Background Information: Selected Reference Sources

  • Encyclopedia of Gender and Information Technology

    "Provides perspective on the way gender and information technology impact each other and about the role of gender in human interaction with IT and the IT profession. Special attention is paid to the contributions, challenges, issues, and experiences of women in the IT field. Contains definitions of more than 1,450 key terms and over 4,700 references to additional works on gender and information technology in order to stimulate further research."
  • Encyclopedia of Human Computer Interaction

    "Covers a wide range of HCI related topics, such as concepts, design, usability, evaluation, innovations, and applications of HCI in organizations around the globe. Includes contributions from over 120 experts and advisors from around the world, as well as over 830 key terms and definitions, and more than 2,600 references."
  • Encyclopedia of Multimedia Technology and Networking

    "This encyclopedia is a valuable collection of articles that presents perspectives from over 220 researchers from 32 countries, providing a thorough explanation of emerging multimedia technologies and applications. This contemporary encyclopedia offers, in detail, an understanding of many topics related to multimedia evolution, design, communications, e-commerce, education, security, and virtual communities."
  • Encyclopedia of New Media

    Provides background information and bibliographical references on a wide variety of interdisciplinary, international, and historical topics specific to information technology and communications. Topics (among many others) include broadband, digital television, gaming, gender and new media, and telemedicine.
  • Information Technology and Indigenous People

    "This book provides theoretical and empirical information related to the planning and execution of IT projects aimed at serving indigenous people. It explores cultural concerns with IT implementation, including language issues & questions of cultural appropriateness."


Sharon Ladenson (

Michigan State University