Research help: Locating information

Plan your search

Plan your search (identify key concepts/words, think of alternative terms or synonyms, how much information do I need? - short report or a large assignment)


Definitions? Try a dictionary a thesaurus or an encyclopaedia available via the library catalogue or our reference databases.

Overview of a topic? Try a book (use the table of contents or the index) - search the library catalogue for dictionaries or access an reference database such as Oxford Reference Online or Facts on File.

Subject resources? Locate a subject guide for your course.

Current information? Search using academic search engines or journal, newspaper and media databases.

Statistics? Try the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) website.

Personal experiences? Try interviewing classmates, teachers, parents, neighbours etc.

Need more? Access all resources available at NS Libraries via the A-Z databases list.

Make sure you understand the assignment question -  check the task word glossary below for a comprehensive list of task words.

Oxford Reference

Finding information - search the library catalogue

  • Search the catalogue for books, DVDs, eBooks, eVideos and other items
  • Access holdings of all TAFE NSW Libraries across the state
  • You can limit your search to your library holdings only
  • Inter-Library Loans (ILL) are available for books not held at at your library
  • Make reservations for books that are out on loan. You can place up to two items on hold.

Facts on File

       Facts on File - Online databases