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Tourism: Dictionaries & Encyclopaedias

Defining main concepts and terms in your university work

  • Along with introductory academic books about topics, use dictionaries and encyclopaedias help you understand the key terms and concepts, giving definitions as a starting point. This is part of the initial planning stage, when you are analysing the assignment brief, considering keywords and building a search strategy. It may also be necessary to define some of the key terms in your work.
  • When writing your work, consider citing definitions from the academic books and articles which will make a better impression. You will also gain understanding of key terms and concepts from your lectures and seminars. Your lecturers will recommend sources in lectures and seminars; make sure you check the unit reading list and lecture notes for direction to the best sources.


  • Do not cite and reference Wikipedia in your university work. Instead, try using a database BU Library subscribes to called CREDOReference.
  • CREDOreference includes a wide range of credible and reliable encyclopaedic information. Search for a theory or enter a term / keywords for a key concept (e.g. ecotourism; agency costs; consumer behaviour) to get results from valuable sources.

Online Thesaurus

A thesaurus can be useful when building your search strategy, considering different words and phrases to use in your online searches.

Library Team

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Bournemouth University Business School Library Team