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Overview of linguistics

Use this guide to perform background research to refine a research topic, confirm terminology, and get a general understanding before finding books and articles to support a research project.

Getting started with academic research | Overview of linguistics | Recommended databases

  • English Language encyclopedias from Oxford Reference Online

        Oxford Reference
    This resource is restricted to Virginia Tech users only Sponsored by VIVA, the Virtual Library of Virginia Contents of this resource available through Summon database provides Get VText links

    English Language Encyclopedias from Oxford Reference Online

    Search or browse across nine subject encyclopedias and dictionaries with over 120,000 entries. References are linked via Get VText.  

    Full record

  • Oxford English Dictionary

        Oxford English Dictionary new edition
    This resource is restricted to Virginia Tech users only Sponsored by VIVA, the Virtual Library of Virginia database provides Get VText links

    Oxford English Dictionary

    Browse or search over 600,000 words showing meanings, history, and pronunciations from across the English-speaking world. As a historical dictionary, the OED is very different from those of current English, in which the focus is on present-day meanings. You'll still find these in the OED, but you'll also find the history of individual words, and of the language—traced through 3 million quotations, from classic literature and specialist periodicals to films scripts and cookery books. You can also explore a timeline of when words entered the English language and the many works that have act as sources for the OED.   

    Full record


  • Jennifer Nardine
  • College Librarian for Performing Arts, Foreign Languages, English, and Religion & Culture
  • (540) 231-4073
  • jnardine@vt.edu
  • 3007 Newman Library
    560 Drillfield Drive
    Blacksburg, VA 24061

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restricted resource Resource is restricted to current Virginia Tech students, faculty, and staff. Use Off Campus Sign In if not on the campus network.
licensed for Virginia Tech alumni access Resource is licensed for Virginia Tech alumni access. Use Alumni Library Portal Sign In to access.
freely accessible database Freely accessible database, available to anyone without restriction
mobile interface Mobile interface available, see description for link.
Screencast tutorial available Screencast tutorial available, icon linked to list.
Contents in summon Contents of this database are in Summon.
get VText Resource provides Get VText links to access full text.
gold open access - publishing Resource provides open access publishing opportunities and open access publications.
get VText Resource provides self archiving opportunities and open access documents.