Encyclopedias, dictionaries and handbooks are excellent sources for background material on language, historical and political events, literary authors and works, film, society and culture.
Use them to
- check out something your lecturer said
- provide a translation of a specific word or phrase
- define terminology related to the study of French
- compile a list of search terms for further research
- find brief, factual information to supplement your research
- build up a context for the topic, and suggest ideas to explore