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Britannica School

By Charles G. Doe - Posted May 1, 2013
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Company: Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 331 N. LaSalle St., Chicago, IL 60654-2682, 800-621-3900; Website: info.eb.com/products/britannica-school.

Price: Contact Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., for the cost of this product in various configurations of number of users and schools.

Audience: Britannica School was developed for elementary, middle, or high school students for classroom, library, or home use.

Format: Britannica School is an online, subscription resource using digital text and articles, ebooks, illustrations, primary sources, websites, a dictionary, a thesaurus, a world atlas, and much more.

System Requirements: Britannica School features universal access, which means it can be used with a tablet, a smartphone, a laptop, a desktop computer, or any internet-connected device with a web browser.

Description: Britannica School was developed to replace textbooks with digital alternatives that address each state’s core standards and engage student curiosity to enhance learning. An easy-to-use system helps teachers transition to digital resources and use them, while lowering district costs.

REPORT CARD
Overall Rating:5 Stars
Installation:A
Content/Features:A
Ease of Use:A
Product Support:A

 

Reviewer Comments:

Installation: Installation is a matter of subscribing to the service, being sure hardware requirements are met, and arranging student and teacher access. Installation Rating: A

Content/Features: Britannica School is another resource with the flexibility to foster a digital shift, whether beginning or ongoing. It can be accessed anywhere—school or library, home or car—using any electronic device from laptop to tablet to smartphone. It motivates and encourages student love of digital material.

Britannica School is developed with a huge variety of content and resources including thousands of articles, images, videos, primary sources, ebooks, editor-recommended websites, reference books such as a dictionary and a thesaurus, and much more. These resources and suggestions for use are aligned to Common Core and state standards and can be used for student reading, writing, researching, and other work.

In addition, a consolidated search feature brings all the resources together in one place for study. Britannica School supports differentiated instruction with a user-friendly interface that facilitates selecting portals appropriate to each student’s reading, grade, and age level. Toggling accesses on-level content for each student on the same topic at the same time.

Text-to-speech, read-aloud, and built-in translation tools support students with special needs and ELLs. Furthermore, students and teachers can easily search, tag, save, and share content. Teachers can use the lesson plan builders to create interactive activities and content that can be saved and shared.

Also included are learning games, animated lessons, multimedia components, manipulatives, and study guides. An elementary interface provides developmentally appropriate learning materials and customized views for young students. Content/Features Rating: A

Ease of Use: Britannica School’s age-appropriate user interfaces provide easy universal access for use with tablets, smartphones, laptops, desktop computers, or any connected electronic device with a web browser. Content can be retrieved and used anytime, anywhere and is very easy to use, especially for students with some experience. Directions are clear and intuitive when needed. Ease of Use Rating: A

Product Support: Comprehensive professional and technical support is available via enewsletters, professional development, webinars, and technical assistance. Email is available via an online support request form or by phone (800-621-3900, extension 7160). Product Support Rating: A

Recommendation: Britannica School is an excellent resource for beginning or facilitating a digital shift. It is an intelligently thought-out, well-developed, quality product that I highly recommend at any grade level. As with all digital shift material, adequate student computer (or laptop, smartphone, etc.) access is a must. Highly Recommended.

Reviewer: Charles Doe (chasgd62@gmail.com) is a 39-year teacher, including 10 years as elementary media specialist in Hastings Area Schools in Michigan. For the past 15 years, he has written articles and reviews for Internet@Schools.


 
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