K-12 school classrooms are increasingly turning to electronic databases for use as research and curriculum learning tools. In support of this trend, commercial vendors are releasing online versions of their print products and creating original online resources. In most cases, the online version offers features not available in the print publication, such as suggestions for classroom activities, study tools, current events resources, and links to other Web sites and products. The new features open a wide array of online resources for research and curriculum experiences that augment the overall educational setting. More and more K-12 educators and students are using the new online products to create new and exciting learning environments.
I have continued my conversations with representatives of a growing number of major vendors about how they are addressing the growing K-12 classroom reliance on electronic resources, the products they currently offer, and what new resources they plan to release in the near future. This article, part 3 of my series of reviews, features new reviews for three vendors: Encyclopaedia Britannica, Grolier Online, and TeachingBooks. And it includes updates on enhancements and new products that have been released in the last year by three of the vendors reviewed in parts 1 and 2 of the series: ABC-CLIO Schools, EBSCO Publishing, and Facts On File. Next issue, November/December 2006, in part 4 of the series, I'll cover the updates and enhancement of the remaining seven vendors covered in the original series: Greenwood Electronic Media, netTrekker, NewsBank, ProQuest Information and Learning, Thomson Gale, H.W. Wilson, and World Book. Each vendor offers free trials for their online products if more information is desired after reading the reviews.
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