5 Academic Websites Students Cannot Live Without | The Student Pocket Guide
by Dolly Garland

If Google is our ultimate question box, Wikipedia provides at least an initial answer to everything. But that’s not the only source. Although you will need to collect information from academically credible sources to produce quality research papers, in the age of internet, doing so doesn’t require sorting through tiny index cards in a library…

Here are 5 websites that will save you a whole lot of time, and give you useful information to get started on your research projects:

Internet Public Library (IPL)

As the name suggests, IPL is a free library available on the Internet. You can’t check out books on there, but you can find a collection of numerous resources gathered from around the internet, on a variety of subjects ranging from arts and humanities to health and medicine. It also offers a collection of resources for kids, teenagers and educators.

Project Gutenberg

On Project Gutenberg you can find legal, free e-books which are out of copyright. If you are researching subjects where most or even some of your material is going to come from sources that are out of copyright, then you might be able to download relevant reading material for free. It’s also a good place to search if you want to brush up on your knowledge of classic literature.


No research paper is complete without a few quotations that make you sound well-read, and like you know what you are talking about. You don’t need to read entire texts to get good quotes. That’s where this trusty website can help you out. You can search for the perfect quote through a variety of options, including authors’ names, collections, prose and verse etc.


You can get at least some basic information, and often quite in-depth information, on just about any topic on About.com. This website has been growing for years, and continues to thrive. Each section has numerous specialised guides who write articles about their chosen topics. About.com also offers articles on the basics of writing research papers, such as citations and references, and provides articles that will help you in finding credible sources for your research papers.


Like Wikipedia, but more scholarly. Scholarpedia offers material that is written and edited by actual scholars. It’s peer-reviewed, and the quality of material is of high, academic standards. They offer articles on various topics, though their focus tends to be on the sciences (including computational science) as opposed to humanities.

Dolly Garland is a freelance writer, devoted to life-long education. She writes for