The following resources can be consulted for definitions:


A reference book that lists terms alphabetically. Each word has an entry giving spelling (including alternative or variant spellings), pronunciation, part of speech and meanings. Unabridged dictionaries are more comprehensive in coverage than abridged editions.


List of terms with their meanings as applied in a specific subject field or discipline.


An index of terms organised to show relationships between concepts, e.g. synonyms and antonyms, related or associated words, broader or narrower terms. A thesaurus is a very useful tool when searching for keywords related to an assignment topic.

Example: Thesaurus terms and their relationships, from PsycINFO database

Human Rights 
[Broader Terms] 
Social Issues 
[Narrower Terms] 
Civil Rights 
[Related Terms] 
Client Rights 
Social Equality 
Social Movements 
Social Processed 
Treatment Withholding

Some thesauri are published as a printed volume and will be held in the Library's Reference Collection.

Thesauri are also available in searchable electronic format on some databases.

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