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Research Databases

Your guide to quality information sources for homework assignments, essays, research projects and general knowledge.

Computers and Science

Science Online

Presents a broad range of scientific disciplines through extensive definitions, essays, diagrams, biographies and experiments.

Science Reference Centre

Provides access to a multitude of full textscience oriented content. Contains full text content from 640 science encyclopaedias, reference books and periodicals. Topics covered include: biology, chemistry, earth and space science, environmental science, health and medicine, history of science, life science, physics, science and society, scientists, technology and wildlife.

Drug Info

Web resources and public library collections selected by specialist staff at the State Library of New South Wales, in consultation with experts in the field.

Cumberland libraries have collections providing easy to read information on:

  • Commonly used drugs such as cannabis, cocaine, ecstasy, party drugs, heroin, inhalants, steroids and tobacco
  • Non-medical use of prescribed drugs
  • Current issues such as drugs in sport
  • Drugs and the law
  • Drugs and mental health
  • Alcohol, guidelines and how to cope with problem drinking
  • Personal narratives and biographies
  • Where to go for help and support

Encyclopaedias and Reference

Britannica Image Quest home access | Britannica Image Quest library access

Access more than two million rights-cleared images from over 50 of the best collections in the world.

Encyclopaedia Britannica home access | Encyclopaedia Britannica library access

Search Britannica’s multimedia content and expand your research to include journal articles and recommended websites all in one search. Britannica Junior for years 3 – 5, Britannica Student for Years 5 – 9 and Encyclopaedia Britannica for Year 10 to adults.

Macquarie Dictionary home access | Macquarie Dictionary library access

Australia’s premier reference publisher now offers a variety of quality resources online. Services includes the Macquarie Dictionary Online, the Macquarie Thesaurus Online, MacquarieNet, the Macquarie Spellchecker and the Macquarie Atlas of Indigenous Australia. Updated annually, Macquarie is the most up-to-date Australian dictionary and thesaurus available.

MasterFILE Complete

MasterFILE Premier

Master FILE Premier is designed specifically for public libraries and provides full text for nearly 1,700 general reference publications with full text information dating as far back as 1975. Covering virtually every subject area of general interest, it also contains full text for nearly 500 reference books and over 164,400 primary source documents, as well as an Image Collection of over 502,000 photos, maps & flags.

World Book Online home access | World Book Online library access

The World Book Online Reference Centre is a premier online general encyclopedia and reference resource. All World Book databases can be accessed outside the library using your library ID number.

The World Almanac for Kids Online

Interesting facts for kids with pictorial search feature.

World Book Kids home access | World Book Kids library access

World Book Kids is designed especially for younger users, English-language learners, and reluctant readers.

Family History

Ancestry Library Edition - library access only

A genealogy research tool containing more than 1.5 billion names in over 4000 databases and includes records from the United States Census, military records, court, land and probate records, church records, directories, passenger lists and more. - library access only

Search 50 million records for Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands and Papua New Guinea. Find your past using our family history records and many more for local and social history. Now includes resources previously available through the Find My Past UK site with over 650 million family history records including records from each of the Victorian (1841-1901) censuses, access to the 1911 census on, the Parish Records Collection and an extensive military records collection.


Created and maintained by the National Library of Australia, Trove helps you find and use resources relating to Australia and brings together content from libraries, museums, archives and other research organisations. Search for books, photos, historical newspaper articles and so much more.

The Find Legal Answers web guide provides access to current information about the law in NSW. The guide lists useful resources, organised by topic, that are available on the web and in print.

Topics include:

  • Family Law
  • Consumer rights
  • Neighbour disputes
  • Making a will
  • Traffic offences
  • Going to court

Cumberland libraries have:

  • The Find Legal Answers Tool Kit – a collection of easy to read and practical books about the law
  • Hot Topics publications – legal issues in plain language

Merrylands Central Library also has additional collections of legal resources and staff trained to assist with searching for legal information.

Legal advice is available from organisations contained in the referral guide.

General Interest

Community Information Directory

A community information resource, listing services and organisations within the Cumberland area.

Consumer Health Complete

Contains full-text articles covering all areas of health and wellness from mainstream medicine to many perspectives of complementary, holistic and integrated medicine. Topics include ageing, cancer, diabetes, drugs and alcohol, fitness, nutrition and dietetics, children’s health and men and women’s health.


Created and maintained by the National Library of Australia, Trove helps you find and use resources relating to Australia and brings together content from libraries, museums, archives and other research organisations. Search for books, photos, historical newspaper articles and so much more.

Multilingual Health Databases

Access to reliable health care information in different languages. Containing the latest evidenced-based health information, Multilingual Health Databases provide hundreds of reports for the most common health topics. Choose from the following languages:

Arabic | Chinese-simplified | Chinese-tradional | Farsi | French | Hindi | Italian | Japanese | Korean | Polish | Portugese | Russian | Spanish | Tagalog | Vietnamese


World Geography and Culture Online

Provides a global approach to facilitate the study of countries, places, peoples, and geography concepts and skills.

Help with Homework and Assignments

Academic Search Premier

Academic Search Premier is a scholarly collection offering full-text coverage of information in many areas of academic study. With full text for more than 2,100 journals, 1700 of which are peer-reviewed, this database will become the first.

Australia/New Zealand Points of View

Full-text database designed to provide students with a series of essays that present multiple sides of a current issue. The database contains 100 topics, each with an overview (objective background/description), point (argument) and counterpoint (opposing argument).

HSCStudy Lab

Online HSC Study companion

Yourtutor is now Studiosity

Studiosity allows students to connect with qualified tutors online using the Library’s public computers or at home using their own computer. Get help with homework, assignments, projects and exam revision. You will need to enter your Library membership number for access. You can access Studiosity between 3.00pm and 10.00pm on school days only.

Hobbies and Craft

Languages and IELTS

Mango Languages

Language learning program. The Library Edition includes a variety of resources to help you learn practical conversational skills for languages from around the world.

Practical Writing

Practical Writing will help you develop your writing skills, both for school (for example, essays) and for life (for example, job applications).

Road to IELTS – General Training Module

Intensive work on vocabulary, reading, writing, listening and speaking helping to develop the skills to the level needed to succeed in the IELTS exam.

Road to IELTS – Academic Module

Intensive work on vocabulary, reading, writing, listening and speaking helping to develop the skills to the level needed to succeed in the IELTS exam.

Issues in English 2

Tailored for adult learners aged 12 and over. This program is based on 8 topical issues of high interest to adults. This is a highly integrated program where the vocabulary and concepts are used in many different ways and contexts. Students will learn communication skills for daily life.


LiteracyPlanet is an online learning resource offering an interactive and fun learning program to assist in childhood literacy development.

Literature and History

Ancient and Medieval History Online

Explores the pre-modern world with in-depth focus on Egypt, Mesopotamia, Greece, Rome, Africa, Europe, the Americas and Asia. It contains full text articles from leading reference works as well as primary sources, maps, images and charts.

Blooms Literary Reference Online

Examines great writers, important works, memorable characters, and influential movements and events in world literature.

History Reference Centre

History Reference Centre find books, journals and more.

History & Reference Library home access | History & Reference Library library access

History and Reference Library contains major titles, including original source documents, adapted for online use and extensive searching capability.

Literary Reference Centre Plus

Provides full text information on authors and their works from a combination of sources including books, encyclopaedias and journals. Includes plot summaries, critical essays, reviews, poems and author biographies. Search by author, title, subject or literary genre, or browse publications and most read authors.

Modern World History Online

Covers the people, places and events in the broad expanse of history – from mid – 15th century to the present.

NoveList Plus

Use NoveList to look for books by author, title, series, plot description or level of readership (children, young adults, adults etc). Use the Read-Alikes feature to find other authors who write like your favourite author. Includes plot summaries, genre and theme-based lists, discussion guides for book clubs, book talks and details of awards.

News and Current Affairs

Australian / New Zealand Reference Centre

A database of Australian and international content with articles in health, current affairs, science, social science, business and literature.

Australian Financial Review

Sydney Morning Herald

The Age

Cumberland Council Library members can access digital editions of Australian Financial Review, Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. Free access to interactive and searchable replicas of the current and archive issues of the printed edition is available in any Library branch.


World Religions Online

Explores the world's major religions and spiritual traditions and their impact on society and cultures.

State Library NSW eResources

Use your Library card to access State Library of NSW online resources. Login to access local & international newspapers, full-text journals, magazines, online databases, eBooks and eAudiobooks.

Resources Just For Kids

Cumberland Council Library Service has resources for children of all ages and reading levels. We have books, music CDs, DVDs, talking books and graphic novels for loan. We also provide a number of activities for infants, pre-schoolers, children and youth.