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History of Mathematics (MATH 308): Need Background Info?

History of Mathematics (MATH 308)

Online Encyclopedias

You can search a large collection of dictionaries and encyclopedias from our Facts/Definitions page:

especially the CREDO collection and the Wolfram Alpha search engine.

Suggested Strategies

  • Start with your textbook or course readings to look for the main ideas or names associated with the topic. As you read, write the questions or comments you have --- they are excellent topics for the research paper or the presentation. Write any suggested titles or articles that are mentioned in the textbook or a course reading.

  • Consult a general or specialized encyclopedia for short articles on your topic. Encyclopedias provide good overviews, important scholars and scientists, and a bibliography of additional sources to the topics. Note: Sometimes such specialized reference sources include the word "dictionary" in the title instead of "encyclopedia".  See these books in our library here. Check also the Encyclopedia Britannica located on Main Level, Row 7, call #AE5 .E363 2002
  • Browse Wikipedia. Studies indicate that articles on science topics are generally highly accurate and are carefully edited in Wikipedia. The list of recommended sources at the end of each article can also be very helpful.

  • Check out the Math News tab in this guide for a variety of interesting topics in mathematics.

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