Database Highlight: Oxford Reference Online

Have you ever wished for a personal library that would include the best encyclopedias and dictionaries at your fingertips? Well – OK this may be a librarian/bibliophile’s wish, but consider it granted…APU subscribes to the Oxford Reference Online database and this includes more than 300 of the Oxford reference volumes – in subjects from A-Z.

For those of you who teach, you can highlight this database in your class as an alternate to the favorites Wikipedia and Google. The resources are academic and many of the volumes include signed articles.

The database can be searched across all resources or across a subject area or volume. Here are the subjects covered:

Archaeology,  Art & Architecture,  Bilingual dictionaries,
Classical studies, Encyclopedias, English Dictionaries and Thesauri,
History, Language reference, Law, Linguistics, Literature, Media studies,
Medicine and Health, Music,
Names studies, Performing arts, Philosophy,
Quotations, Religion, Science and technology, Social sciences
, and Society and culture

A tip in locating the articles you need more quickly – make sure you mark the box on the left side of the screen that says “Provided by Library” (this is just beneath the Search Results). The University Libraries have purchased many titles in this database – but not everything, and this makes sure you are receiving results for items you can actually open online and read.

In the area of Religion/Theology/Bible, the database includes a Bible dictionary, The Oxford Companion to the Bible, The Oxford Guide to the People and Places of the Bible, dictionaries to the history of the church, and for a variety of world religions. In Philosophy,
the resources include The Oxford Companion to Philosophy and The Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy.

I have inserted a link to the database in the first paragraph (for it to work you need to be already logged onto the APU network), but as with all of our databases, it can be located from the library homepage – and selecting “All databases” – then selecting “O” for Oxford. When there, you will see we have several other Oxford databases including the renowned Oxford English Dictionary (OED).

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2 Responses to Database Highlight: Oxford Reference Online

  1. Nancy Brashear says:

    Liz–what a wonderful resource! I see that it has access to a lot of children’s literature and articles on children’s literature. What kind of a log-in do we need to use (APU or a new one?)–Nancy

    • lleahy says:

      Hi Nancy! Just your APU log-in …if you log in for APU and then go to the library homepage ( it is probably the easiest. I had a feeling that adding the link to the database might have a few bugs…but if you follow the steps at the end of the post, you’ll get there. Glad you took a look!

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