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100 Unbelievably Useful Reference Sites You’ve Never Heard Of

Beyond Google, Wikipedia and other generic reference sites, the Internet boasts a multitude of search engines, dictionaries, reference desks & databases that have organized and archived information for quick and easy searches. In this list, we’ve compiled just 100 of our favorites, for teachers, students, hypochondriacs, procrastinators, bookworms, sports nuts and more.

Dictionaries and More

When you need a quick definition or want more specialized results that display synonyms, rhyming words and slang, turn to this list that is perfect for students or writers.

  1. OneLook: This no-frills online dictionary lets you look up basic definitions, related words, phrases and more. You can even customize your experience with different searches.
  2. RhymeZone: Type in a word to find rhyming words, synonyms, definitions, Shakespeare references and more.
  3. Strange and Unusual References: Head to this site to look up all-vowel words, magic words, magic archetypes, how to identify unicorns and other odd material.
  4. freedict.com: This online translator can find words in Dutch, Afrikaans, Russian, Portugese, Swedish, Japanese, Hungarian and more.
  5. The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy: Search through topics like technology, American history, literature in English, proverbs and more to become a more “active citizen in our multicultural democracy.”
  6. Word Spy: Search for a specific word to bring up funny quotations and a definition, or you can browse categories and sub categories like aging and death, hacking and hackers, entrepreneurs, jargon and buzzwords, art and design, drugs, euphemisms, sleeping or cell phones.
  7. Slang Site: Look up Web words, slang and even made up but often used words here.
  8. Behind the Names: Find out the history of your name or search names by categories like English, Spanish, mythology, Biblical names, African and more.
  9. Directory of Occupational Titles: If you’ve ever wanted to know the official name of your job, look it up here.
  10. Glossary of Real Estate Abbreviations, Terms and Phrases: Get through your next home signing by doing some extra research on this site.

Teacher References

Teaching guides like these will help you double-check facts, look for relevant quotes, find different careers in education, and get ideas for lesson plans.

  1. Twain Quotations A to Z: Inspire (or confuse) your students by throwing out a Mark Twain quote every once in a while. You can search by subject matter.
  2. Math Glossary: Look up words and concepts like abacus, Thales’ theorem, obtuse triangle and a lot more in this special site.
  3. Biology Website References for Students and Teachers: Learn about evolution, cell chemistry, anatomy and genetics from this list of reference sites.
  4. Children’s Literature Web Guide: Look for award-winning children’s books, readers’ theatre sites, stories published online and more on this site.
  5. Charles Dickens Gad’s Hill Place: Use this quote page to search by topic, title, or phrase, or pull from The Daily Dose of Dickens book.
  6. Encyclopedia Mythica: Search for text, quotes and history of mythology, folklore and religon. Categories include Greek people, Celtic mythology and Roman mythology.
  7. American Memory: The Library of Congress’ American culture and history reference site features topics like environment and conservation, immigration, women’s history, Presidents, religion, maps, literature, African American history and others.
  8. ASL Browser: Look up American Sign Language signs here.
  9. Ditto: Search the web for all kinds of beautiful images on this site.
  10. Learning and Performance Glossary: From accelerated learning to guidance package to meta skills, this glossary is full of education terms for teachers.

Librarian References

Librarians will benefit from these great reference sites, some of which were designed just for or by librarians.

  1. A Glossary of the Humanities: Click on a letter to look up words, phrases and concepts that use references from Foucault, Burke, Frye and others as definitions.
  2. Library of Congress Online Catalogs: We’re pretty sure most librarians have heard of this site, but it’s seriously one of the best reference sites on the Web.
  3. Historical Text Archives: This site boasts nearly 687 articles and 70 books about history, especially American history.
  4. KidsClick!: This educational search engine was created by librarians and teachers and is organized by topics like society and government, machines and transportation, health and family, facts and reference, and a lot more.
  5. Library Spot: This great reference site has links to encyclopedias, Top 10 lists, business references, public libraries and a LOT more.

Instead of Googling your symptoms, use these authoritative reference sites to get drug information, find a hospital and research a disease or condition.

  1. Medline Plus: Look up anything to do with health care on this site from, prescription drugs to local resources to symptoms and diseases.
  2. RxList: RxList is “the Internet drug index,” and you search by prescriptions dispensed, names searched or just by letter.
  3. Google Directory – Health and Medicine: Categories and individual web pages are listed on this Google reference site. Browse topics like health news, history of medicine, medical dictionaries or patient education.
  4. Patient Care: Columbia University Medical Center lists a number of patient resources, including tools for finding a doctor, dentist and hospital.
  5. MediLexicon: At MediLexicon, you can use the medical dictionary search, hospital search, medical abbreviations search or read all the latest medical news.
  6. InteliHealth: This reference site has an Ask the Expert section, as well as a database full of information for diseases and conditions, from asthma to digestive issues to weight management to STDs.
  7. Healthfinder: This government site features a Drug Interaction Checker, a Health Library and consumer guides.
  8. The Merck Manual: Search this online medical library for diseases and conditions and drug products.
  9. Bristol Biomedical Image Archive: Browse thousands of biomedical images on this site.
  10. Online Medical Dictionary: This simple search tool lets you browse by letter or subject area.

References for Students

From homework help to art definitions to almanacs, students at traditional or online colleges will find reference material here.

  1. Online Music Theory Helper: Order flash cards or look up different theory lessons on this site.
  2. ArtLex: Browse this art terms dictionary for historical context information, definitions and more.
  3. The Works of the Bard: Use the Shakespeare search engine or browse plays by category to get references and text of Shakespeare’s works.
  4. Factmonster Reference Desk: Here, you’ll find an almanac, homework center, atlas, dictionary and encyclopedia for younger students.
  5. Little Explorers Picture Dictionary: Students learning to read will find pictures to go along with their definition results.
  6. Distance Education Glossary: If you’ve recently enrolled in a distance ed course or program, use this glossary to help you navigate your new education portal.
  7. HyperHistory Online: There are over 2,000 files on this site, on all kinds of world history topics like politics, religion, culture, science and special events.
  8. Style Guides and Resources: This reference list will help you out when you need to write a paper using APA, MLA, and other special citation systems.
  9. Statistical Resources on the Web: Find updated statistics on everything from agriculture to business to labor to housing to the military.
  10. RefDesk: Check your facts quickly and easily at the RefDesk, which features a site of the day, thought of the day, and plenty of multi-search tools.

Niche Sites

When you need to look up highly specialized materials and facts, look to these niche sites for help with online conversions, transportation and military acronyms, legal help, career help and more.

  1. Dictionary of Metal Terminology: Search online or order the hard copy version to find metal-related words.
  2. Online Conversion: Convert “just about anything” on this site, which understands over 5,000 different units for date, time, density, energy, acceleration, angles and a lot more.
  3. Transportation and Logistics Acronyms: Find acronyms for the U.S. government and military, supply chain systems, transportation, trucking, freight and more.
  4. Harry Potter Glossary: If you’re behind in your Harry Potter reading, use this extensive glossary to help you sort out all of the characters and unique vocabulary.
  5. Videoconferencing Glossary: Even non-techies can understand the fundamentals of videoconferencing thanks to this website, which lists definitions for words like analog signals, camera presets, bps, continuos presence and others.
  6. Everybody’s Legal Glossary: Nolo’s legal glossary is designed for everyday people who need help understanding traffic tickets, real estate forms, and “hundreds of legal terms, from the common to the bizarre.”
  7. All About Jewels: Illustrated Dictionary of Jewelry: Find a picture of each gem or jewelry and learn about its minerals, fashion history, gravity and colors.
  8. Dictionary of English Idioms and Idiomatic Expressions: ESL students and curious native speakers can search this dictionary to find idioms like “part and parcel,” or “gnaw your vitals.”
  9. WestNet IT Glossary: Search results for IT words bring up definitions, a list of related words, animations and graphics.
  10. Travel Industry Dictionary: Look up words and acronyms like gay friendly, day rate, WAPTT, recall commission statement and more on this site.

Search Engines

Search engines are unique Internet reference guides. Read this list to find lots of search engines besides Google.

  1. Giga Blast: Giga Blast is still in beta form, but you can search websites, images and video.
  2. MsFreckles.com: Cute little Ms. Freckles gives you all the tools to conduct a meta search here.
  3. Kart00: Here, you have the option of only searching English pages or the entire web.
  4. Gimpsy: Gimspy specializes in “active sites for active people.” You can search by verb or action, by filling in the sentence “I want to…”
  5. CustomSearchEngine.com: This site is a link directory for Google’s custom search engine.
  6. Rollyo: This highly customizable search engine lets you enter a keyword or phrase and then select specific categories to search, like travel and hotels, health, celebrity gossip and more.
  7. Ms. Dewey: Your off-the-wall host Ms. Dewey flirts, sings and offers silly trivia or analysis while you search.
  8. Ulyssek Search Engine: You can view your results organized into categories on this site.
  9. Cha Cha: This creative search engine makes you feel like you’re sending a text from your cell phone when you search.
  10. FactBites: FactBites is “where results make sense” and is touted as a search engine crossed with an encyclopedia.

Open Source Sites

For open source materials that also serve as reference guides, use this list.

  1. DataParkSearch Engine: Use this open source search engine to find multilingual sites, pull up “fuzzy searching based on acronyms and abbreviations” and find text files, mp3s and .gif files.
  2. Wiktionary: Wikipedia’s free dictionary is a collaborative, multilingual resource.
  3. Open Library: This user-generated book catalog has over 13 million books in its library.
  4. dmoz: dmoz is an open directory project, where you can search for or edit topics and results for kids and teens, reference materials, business, health, arts and more.

Internet and Computer Reference

Non-techies and experienced web workers may want to brush up on Internet and computer terms by searching these sites and glossaries.

  1. CNET Glossary: Use this glossary to look up network terms.
  2. Glossary of Internet Terms: From ADN to Meta Tag to SDSL to cgi-bin, find definitions of Internet terms here.
  3. Chat Stuff: This short dictionary has translations for popular chat acronyms like AFK, BAK, and BCNU.
  4. McAfee Virus Glossary: Learn about online threats and computer security by browsing this authoritative glossary.
  5. Tech Encyclopedia: Look up a specific word or click to get a random definition each day.
  6. What Is? IT Dictionary: Browse categories like personal computing, call centers, cheat sheets, authentication, network hardware, compliance, Linux, storage management, Telecom, robotics and a whole lot more for tech definitions.

List prepared by http://www.teachingtips.com/blog/

Great 100 Education Blogs

Education blogs are becoming a means for educators, students,academician and education administrators to interact more effectively than ever before. Technorati currently tracks 63.1 million blogs. Over 5,000 of them are about education.

Blog Topics

College | E-Learning | Education News | Education Policy | Internet Culture | Learning | Library and Research | Specialty | Teaching | Technology

College

These blogs provide tips for current College v2

 

E-Learning

Technology-assisted learning and online learning are topics discussed in these blogs.

  1. Clive on Learning
  2. Connectivism
  3. Digital Chalkie
  4. Internet Time Blog
  5. elearnspace
  6. E-Learning Queen
  7. Learning and Technology
  8. Moving at the Speed of Creativity
  9. Stephen’s Web
  10. The Knowledge Tree
  11. XplanaZine

Education News

These two blogs are good starting points to read more about the latest news in the world of education.

  1. Eduwonk
  2. This Week in Education

Education Policy

These are blogs written by activists who are looking to reform our school system or just education in general.

  1. Change Agency
  2. D-Ed Reckoning
  3. Education in Texas
  4. Education Intelligence Agency
  5. Jenny D.
  6. Practical Theory
  7. Schools Matter

Internet Culture

Internet applications, such as RSS and blogs, and how they can be applied in a teaching/learning environment are discussed in these blogs.

  1. absolutely intercultural
  2. Adventures in Educational Blogging
  3. BionicTeacher
  4. Digital Writing, Digital Teaching
  5. Full Circle Online Interaction Blog
  6. Ideas and Thoughts from an EdTech
  7. Infinite Thinking Machine
  8. learning.now
  9. Learn Online

Learning

The focus of these blogs is on learning theory, informal learning, and knowledge.

  1. 2 Cents Worth
  2. abject learning
  3. Informal Learning Blog
  4. Learning Curves
  5. Learnlets
  6. McGee’s Musings
  7. Random Walk in Learning
  8. The Stingy Scholar

Library and Research

These are research-based blogs, some of which are library-based or written by librarians.

  1. David Lee King
  2. Deep Thinking
  3. Dissertation Research
  4. Free Range Librarian
  5. heyjude
  6. ideant
  7. Information Wants To Be Free
  8. InfoSciPhi
  9. librarian.net
  10. librariesinteract.info
  11. LibraryBytes
  12. Library Stuff
  13. LSJ Editors’ Blog
  14. Panlibus
  15. Rambling Librarian
  16. Research Buzz
  17. Resource Shelf
  18. STLQ
  19. Tasty Research

Specialty

Music, history, science, and law are discussed at these blogs, respectively.

  1. Catalysts & Connections
  2. History Is Elementary
  3. Polar Science 2006
  4. WisBlawg

Teaching

The following blogs deal with issues facing teachers, including teaching methods, lesson plans, aids, and tools.

  1. A Difference
  2. Are We Doing Anything Today?
  3. Artichoke
  4. blog of proximal development
  5. Borderland
  6. Bud the Teacher
  7. Christopher D. Sessums Blog
  8. Cool Cat Teacher Blog
  9. FunnyMonkey
  10. Infocult: Information, Culture, Policy, Education
  11. NYC Educator
  12. Teachers Teaching Teachers
  13. Teaching Hacks.com
  14. Teaching Generation Z
  15. teaching.mrbelshaw.co.uk
  16. The Open Classroom

Technology

Bringing technology to the classroom and using technology to learn and teach are topics discussed within these blogs.

  1. A Teacher’s Life
  2. Around the Corner v2
  3. Beth’s Thoughts on Technology in the Classroom
  4. bgblogging
  5. Bionic Teaching
  6. Blogging IT and EDucation
  7. CogDogBlog
  8. Dangerously Irrelevant
  9. Derek’s Blog
  10. Ed-Tech Insider
  11. EdCompBlog
  12. edtechNOT.com Blog
  13. EdTechPost
  14. EduBlog Insights
  15. Education/Technology
  16. Infomancy
  17. Remote Access
  18. Teach42
  19. Techlearning Blog
  20. The Tech Savvy Educator
  21. The Thinking Stick
  22. Weblogg-ed

Courtsy by http://oedb.org/library/features/top-100-education-blogs