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Research Tools - Reference and General Research

Quick jump:  Library Databases |  Best of the Web

Library Databases

Electronic resources marked with an asterisk are provided by  DISCUS - South Carolina's Virtual Library.

Credo Reference*
In Library | Home Access
Hundreds of online full-text reference books in many subject areas. For middle school students through adults.

EBSCOhost Research Databases*
In Library | Home Access
Offers a point of access to specialized research databases. Provides the ability to cross-search EBSCO databases.


Gale Virtual Reference Library
In Library | Home Access
An online collection of research titles in the following subject areas:  Biography, Business, Education, History, Law, Literature, Medicine, Mulitcultural Studies, Nation and World, Religion, Science, and Social Science. 


Opposing Viewpoints in Context*
In Library |  Home Access
Topical overviews and position statements in the sciences and social sciences from magazines and e-books.

Points of View Reference Center*
In Library | Home Access
Periodical and discussion papers covering controversial subjects from various perspectives.
Student Research Center: High School*
In Library | Home Access
Information for high school students on many topics from magazines, newspapers, books, and photographs, video and more.
Student Research Center: Middle School*
In Library | Home Access
Information for middle school students on many topics from magazines, newspapers, books, and photographs, video and more.

Wilson Catalogs
In Library |  Home Access
Reading suggestions in fiction and non-fiction for young children to adults covering a broad range of subjects.


Best of the Web


Infomine – Scholarly Internet resources.

Infoplease – Encyclopedia, almanac, atlas, biographies, dictionary.

Library Spot – Comprehensive Web library of links.

Refdesk – One of the most comprehensive general, all-purpose reference Web sites.

Virtual Reference Shelf – Selected Web resources from the Library of Congress.

World Cat – Search the collection catalogs of thousands of libraries for finding print and various media formatted resources that may not be available within the Charleston County Public Library. Items  owned by CCPL may not be ordered through interlibrary loan. Please read these additional  request guidelines before using the  online form to request that the library borrow an item. Note: a fee of $2 applies to every filled interlibrary loan request.

Finding Information on the Internet: A Tutorial – From UC Berkeley.

Consumer Information:

Consumer Action Web Site – Federal Citizen Information Center.
Consumer Reports Online 
Epinions – Product reviews by "real people."
Federal Trade Commission Information for Consumers 
FirstGov for Consumers – Consumer information from the federal government.


Cooking and Food:

Back of the Box – Brand name recipes from the back of the box.
– Searchable online archive of recipes.
The Cooks Thesaurus
 – Cooking encyclopedia that includes ingredients, kitchen tools, and suggested substitutions.


Phone Directories:

BigBook Directory – Search for U.S. businesses in the online yellow pages; includes People Search and consumer features.
Infobel.com – Links to Superpages.com, Verizon's national yellow pages, AT&T's AnyWho and Switchboard.
Note: Reference USA is an enhanced residential, business and government contact information directory. The database requires a library card for home access. It is in the
Business and Finance library database section.