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Country Resources: Start Here!


If your research project requires you to find information about a country one of the first places you might start is an encyclopedia. Encyclopedias are a great place to get basic information on a country's geography, people, and products. You can find Print Encyclopedias in the Reference section of the library and find Online Encyclopedias below.

This might be a good time for you to think about what kind of information you need. Is it about the population? Check for people or demographics. Is it about the economy? Check for GDP, unemployment, and types of industry.

To go deeper into analysis of a country's current and recent state, start at the CIA's World Factbook. Updated weekly, the World Factbook provides the most current information and analysis on

  • Geographical Area
  • People (many statistical subareas dealing with life expectancy and obesity)
  • Population
  • Communication
  • Energy 
  • Economy (many statistical subareas )
  • Military Spending to GDP

For some categories the data is estimated for last year. For others it may be from 2 or 3 years ago. Be sure to notice and reference the year of the data you are using.

This data is a good snapshot of a country but if you are looking for data over time you will want to consult other sources. These may include reference books, government websites, and other authoritative online resources.

Print Encyclopedias & Almanacs

E-book Encyclopedias