Reference & Research

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Research Tools

The Staunton Public Library subscribes to a number of online research tools that are made available for public use. Online databases may be accessed from internet computers in the Computer Center or your home or office computer. Some of these sites may require your Staunton Public Library account number and Library PIN.

Visit our genealogy and local history page to learn more about those topics.

MasterFILE Complete is the most comprehensive and valuable collection of full-text general interest resources, including returns from periodicals, newspapers and books. This authoritative general information database is the best place to start your research project.

Through MasterFILE, we also have access to Consumer Reports articles. Use the search box below to search Consumer Reports.

Search Consumer Reports


Online Learning

  • Universal Class: More than 500 courses are available on topics such as Exercise and Fitness, Entrepreneurship, Arts and Music, Home and Garden Care, Cooking, Computers and Technology, Health and Medicine, Homeschooling, Job Assistance, Law and Legal, Parenting and Family, Pet and Animal Care, plus hundreds more. Requires Staunton Library card.
  • Driving Tests: DMV practice tests for car, motorcycle, and CDL.
  • Rocket Languages: Online instruction in 14 world languages including English and American Sign Language.

Magazines & Newspapers

  • Find It VA: Provides access to many newspapers, magazines and journals.
  • Explora:  A user-friendly interface, designed to meet the unique needs of its users. Explora supports both student research and classroom instruction.
  • RBdigital: Full digital copies of magazines that can be viewed on your computer or mobile device.

Books & Literature

  • RBdigital: Downloadable audiobooks and e-books. Most are classic titles, but not all.
  • OverDrive: Downloadable e-books and audiobooks.
  • NoveList Plus: Helps you find your next book to read.

Encyclopedias,  Phone Books, & More

  • ReferenceUSA: Search jobs, businesses or mailing lists.
  • Encyclopedia Virginia:  A project of Virginia Humanities in partnership with the Library of Virginia, EV publishes topical and biographical entries written by scholars, edited to be accessible to a general audience, and vigorously fact checked.
  • Green File: Scholarly and general interest titles focusing on the relationship between human beings and the environment.
  • LISTA: Covers librarianship, classification, information management, and more and indexes nearly 600 periodicals plus books, research reports, and proceedings.
  • Salem Science: Covers a wide range of physical and natural sciences.
  • Teacher Reference Center: Provides coverage on key education topics for K-12 Teachers & Librarians.
  • Virginia Navigator: Helps you find services and resources for seniors and those with disabilities.

Government, Politics & Legal


  • Health Reference Series Online : Access to Disabilities Sourcebook and Medical Tests Sourcebook. Use your Staunton Library card number, or use “valleylibraries” for Universal Password.
  • Salem Health: Access to Complementary & Alternative Medicine, Infectious Diseases & Conditions, and Psychology and Mental Health books
  • Medline Plus: The National Institutes of Health's website produced by the National Library of Medicine.
  • Merck Manual Home Edition: Access to the world's bestselling home medical reference.