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June 07, 2011

Table of Contents

EBSCO Publishing and H.W. Wilson Make Joint Merger Announcement
SETDA’s 2011 National Trends Report Shows State Leaders Leveraging Technology to Transform Teaching and Learning
Facts On File Adds New Video Features to Modern World History Online!
Turning Foundation Awards 10 Grants with NBC Learn and Turning Technologies
Orchard Software Releases Correlation to Common Core Standards
CDW-G Releases Results of Cloud Computing Tracking Poll
Alexander Street Press Launches Online Collection of Primary Materials Documenting Women’s Activism on the Global Stage
Vernier Publishes New Physics Experiments Lab Book

EBSCO Publishing and H.W. Wilson Make Joint Merger Announcement

EBSCO Publishing (EBSCO) and The H.W. Wilson Company (Wilson) have merged in what is being viewed by the companies as an ideal match.

The announcement states that libraries using products from either company will benefit as improvements are made to the respective resources. Wilson database products are known for their quality indexing. The Wilson subject thesaurus and Wilson "names" authority file are well reputed, and the WilsonWeb platform systematically leverages this indexing within its searching to provide quality, relevant results to end users. The Wilson controlled vocabularies will be integrated into EBSCO's controlled vocabularies, resulting in improved subject indexing for EBSCO databases. The EBSCOhost platform will be enhanced to take advantage of this indexing in its search and relevancy ranking algorithms.

According to Tim Collins, President of EBSCO Publishing, this acquisition leads directly to heightening the value and quality of EBSCO and Wilson resources. "Upholding the integrity of the Wilson indexing is essential, and extending these attributes to EBSCOhost resources is a critical part of this venture. When it comes to thesauri (subjects and names), and how these are leveraged, Wilson has long been an industry leader.  We look forward to bringing this value and approach to all applicable EBSCOhost databases and are excited about the benefits this will bring to EBSCOhost users. We are also pleased to be able to add the Wilson databases into the EBSCO Discovery Service search experience"

Harry Regan, President & CEO for Wilson, commented, "EBSCO and H.W. Wilson have been engaged as business partners for a number of years and are now officially operating as one. The result will be a broader and deeper range of products and services for the library reference community with significantly added value. Both companies have had separate, distinctive histories, but have always shared a common commitment for the highest order of customer satisfaction."

All Wilson indexing, abstracts and full text will be fully searchable via EBSCO Discovery Service for subscribers of Wilson databases. The addition of Wilson's abstract/index records and unique full text will strengthen EBSCO Discovery Service.

Wilson databases will be loaded onto EBSCOhost over the coming months.  EBSCO will continue to maintain WilsonWeb until such time that all Wilson databases are available on EBSCOhost and customers have been transitioned to EBSCOhost.

Source: H.W. Wilson, www.hwwilson.com; EBSCO Publishing, www.ebscohost.com/

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SETDA’s 2011 National Trends Report Shows State Leaders Leveraging Technology to Transform Teaching and Learning

The State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA) has released its eighth annual National Educational Technology Trends Report, "State Leaders Leveraging Technology to Transform Teaching and Learning." This annual report highlights innovative educational technology activities that are playing a crucial role in K-12 school improvement efforts in states and local communities across the country. The report includes a variety of examples of successful educational technology initiatives as well as details regarding the federal Title IID program.
 
This nationwide data collection showed states and districts employing four key strategies with their educational technology investments:
 
·      Developing and Scaling Innovative Learning Models: High-access, technology-rich learning environments and online and blended learning models help address education priorities to meet student learning needs where traditional approaches have fallen short.
·      Preparing All Students for College and 21st Century Careers: Career and college readiness initiatives, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) programs, project based collaborative learning environments, digital and open content, and dropout prevention programs enabled by technology support the efforts to prepare students for life in the 21st century.
·      Supporting Educator Effectiveness: Effective professional development is the linchpin for ensuring that schools attract and retain highly-qualified teachers who can effectively implement a technology-rich learning environment in every classroom.
·      Building a 21st Century Infrastructure for Equity, Innovation, and Improvement: Building the 21st century education environment requires a technology infrastructure that includes access to devices and sufficient broadband.
 
"State leadership is integral to transforming education to meet the challenges and goals of students and teachers in the 21st century," stated Douglas Levin, Executive Director of SETDA. "Our study highlights how effective implementation of technology as a part of core reform and improvement strategies is associated with increases in academic attainment and achievement, student engagement, and teacher retention."
 
"State educational technology directors continue to be integral to ensuring that state policies and programs focus on meeting the needs of all 21st century learners," said Christine Fox, SETDA's Director of Professional Development and Research. "In supporting student achievement goals, SETDA members promote technology-enhanced approaches that work."
 
The national report is available online at www.setda.org/web/guest/2011nationaltrends.
Individual state reports can be accessed online from www.setda.org/web/guest/statemembers.

Source: The State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA), www.setda.org

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Facts On File Adds New Video Features to Modern World History Online!

Facts On File has announced the addition of a wealth of primary source video content-a new video gallery, a new video player, and more than 600 new videos-to Modern World History Online. These new features enhance the history database, which covers the full scope of world history through the mid-15th century to the present.

The new video player is part of the new "Focus on History through Video" feature on the home page, which spotlights a different video selection each time users visit the database. Clicking on the "Go to Video Gallery" link below the video player leads to a new gallery of all of the videos currently available in the database-more than 1,000 clips. The videos in this gallery can be sorted by era, providing easy access to relevant content from one convenient location.

The 600-plus new videos added to Modern World History Online are mainly historical newsreels, with a focus on World War II-era footage. The newsreels enhance the curriculum with "you are there" glimpses into particular events related to Cuban Missile Crisis, Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany, the Camp David Accords, the first landing on the Moon, the Allied troops during World War II, Bill Clinton, Winston Churchill, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Anwar Sadat, and more.

For ordering, pricing, or other information, contact the Online Sales Department at OnlineSales@InfobaseLearning.com.

Source: Infobase Learning, www.infobaselearning.com

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Turning Foundation Awards 10 Grants with NBC Learn and Turning Technologies

The Turning Foundation, in partnership with NBC Learn and Turning Technologies, has announced the grant recipients of the Spring 2011 Classroom Improvement Technology Grant The 10 grant awards will directly impact 1,182 students using classroom TurningPoint response systems and 9,228 students with building access to NBC digital content.  The goal of this joint effort is to help educators develop 21st Century classrooms and improve achievement by providing effective, engaging technology and professional development tools from multiple industry-leading companies.

Innovative applications that received awards include those submitted by the following teachers:

  • Branton Lachman, Roosevelt High School- Corona, CA
  • Colleen Werner, Ipswich High School- Ipswich, MA
  • Suzanne Nagourney, Arthur L. Johnson High School- Clark, NJ
  • Holly Berndt,Space Center Intermediate School- Houston, TX
  • Heidi Sprandlin,Brevard Middle School - Brevard, NC
  • Linda Anderson, Wayland Union High School Teacher - Wayland, MI
  • Rhonda Churchill, Pittsville Elementary/Middle School - Pittsville, MD
  • Rebecca Hersh, Alfred S. FaustIntermediate Elementary School- East Rutherford, NJ
  • Patrick Kinne, Bishop Grimes Prep High School- East Syracuse, New York
  • Tamie Hollon, Stratton Meadows Elementary School - Colorado Springs, CO

The 10 classroom awards reflect an estimated value of $3,500 each.  Spring 2011 Classroom Improvement Grant award recipients will receive the following:

Turning Technologies, developer of interactive student response systems focused on engaging and motivating students while increasing achievement, will provide one 32-seat radio frequency student response system that includes: TurningPoint and TurningPoint AnyWhere polling software suite, ResponseCard RF LCD keypads, USB-based response RF receiver, QuestionPoint 2 - state-aligned question bank, customized carrying case and technical support.

NBC Learn, the education arm of NBC, makes the archival and current events resources of NBC News available to teachers, students, and schools. NBC LEARN K-12 makes over 12,000 video clips, documents, images and more available to teachers and students, all aligned to state standards and updated regularly. As a partner in the Classroom Improvement Grant, NBC Learn will provide a 1-year NBC LEARN K-12 subscription (starting in August 2011) for the entire building of the winning classroom grants to access the quality digital content

For more information, please visit: www.TurningTechnologies.com/K12Grant/.

Source: Turning Technologies, www.turningtechnologies.com

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Orchard Software Releases Correlation to Common Core Standards

Educational Options, Inc. (EdOptions) has announced the release of the Common Core Standards correlation for its elementary product line, Orchard Software. With this correlation, educators can be assured that Orchard's instruction, assessment, and remediation cover the skills and knowledge found within the standards.

"With 43 states having now adopted the Common Core Standards, it is critical that educators have tools that effectively aid their students in achieving the expectations set by the standards at each grade level. We are committed to providing this important resource through our educational technology," said Janice Wilder, vice president of academics and curriculum for EdOptions.

Orchard Software is a complete school improvement solution that features standards-based assessments, automatic targeted assignments, and comprehensive data management and progress reporting. Orchard includes more than 160 instructional modules providing more than 5,000 lessons.

The Common Core Standards Initiative is a state-led effort coordinated by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). These standards define the knowledge and skills students should have within their K-12 education careers so that they will graduate high school able to succeed in entry-level, credit-bearing academic college courses and in workforce training programs. The initiative provides teachers and parents with a common understanding of what students are expected to learn regardless of where they live.

Subjects covered in the standards include Language Arts and Mathematics. Language Arts standards address the areas of reading, writing, speaking and listening, language, and media and technology. In Mathematics, the standards cover a "solid foundation in whole numbers, addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, and decimals" for K-5 students, and "a coherent and rich preparation for high school mathematics" for middle school students, while high school standards "prepare students to think and reason mathematically." To view the Orchard Software Correlation to the Common Core State Standards K-12, visit: www.orchardsoftware.com/correlations.php.

Source: Educational Options, Inc., www.edoptions.com

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CDW-G Releases Results of Cloud Computing Tracking Poll

CDW Government LLC (CDW-G) has announced the results of its first Cloud Computing Tracking Poll, an assessment of current and future cloud computing use in business, government, healthcare and education based on a survey of 1,200 IT professionals familiar with their organizations' use of, or plans for, cloud computing.  Twenty-eight percent of U.S. organizations are using cloud computing today, CDW-G found, with most reporting (73 percent) that their first step into the cloud was implementation of a single cloud application.

While many organizations (84 percent) say they have already employed at least one cloud application, most do not yet identify themselves as cloud users who are implementing or maintaining cloud computing.  CDW-G defines cloud computing as a model for enabling convenient, on-demand access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications and services) that can be rapidly provisioned. 

Applications most commonly operated in the cloud are commodity applications such as email (50 percent of cloud users), file storage (39 percent), web and video conferencing (36 and 32 percent, respectively), and online learning (34 percent).

Respondents estimated that, on average, only 42 percent of their current services and applications have potential to operate in the cloud.  Even the respondents who identified themselves as cloud users - currently implementing or maintaining cloud computing - said they expect to spend no more than one-third of their IT budget (34 percent) on cloud computing by 2016, and at the same time, to save 31 percent of their IT budget by using cloud resources and applications.  Non-cloud users said they expect to spend slightly more than one-quarter of their IT budget (28 percent) on cloud computing by 2016, and to save 23 percent by using cloud computing resources and applications.

Among current cloud users, 84 percent said they cut application costs by moving to the cloud.  On average, cloud users report saving 21 percent annually on those applications moved to the cloud. 

The CDW-G Cloud Computing Tracking Poll includes findings specific to each of the eight industries surveyed during March 2011:  small businesses, medium businesses, large businesses, the Federal government, state and local governments, healthcare, higher education and K-12 public schools.  The survey sample includes 150 individuals from each industry who identified themselves as familiar with their organization's use of, or plans for, cloud computing.  The margin of error for the total sample is ±2.7 percent at a 95 percent confidence level.  The margin of error for each industry sample is ±8.0 percent at a 95 percent confidence level. 

For a copy of the complete CDW-G 2011 Cloud Computing Tracking Poll, please visit www.cdwg.com/cloudtrackingpoll.  For more about CDW-G's cloud computing capabilities and offerings, please visit www.cdwg.com/cloud.

Source: CDW-G, http://cdwg.com

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Alexander Street Press Launches Online Collection of Primary Materials Documenting Women’s Activism on the Global Stage

Alexander Street Press has announced the launch of an online collection of primary materials chronicling the activities and influence of women's international movements from 1830 to the present. The editors of "Women and Social Movements, International" are Professors Kathryn Kish Sklar and Thomas Dublin, both women's history scholars at SUNY Binghamton.

With 150,000 pages at completion and backed by a global editorial board of 130 historians, Women and Social Movements International will grow to include material from over 200 archives and libraries. Key organizations featured in the collection include the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, the International Abolitionist Federation, the Inter-American Commission on Women, the International Alliance of Women, the Pan Pacific and Southeast Asian Women's Association, the International Congress of Women at The Hague, the International Women's Tribune Centre, and many more.

Partner archives include Harvard's Schlesinger Library, the Aletta Institute of Women's History, the Sophia Smith Collection, the Library of Congress, and the Mildred Persinger Collection from Hollins University.

As with other Alexander Street online collections, Women and Social Movements International is Semantically Indexed and powerfully searchable. The collection's image viewer technology allows researchers to view and search high-quality images of the original primary materials.

To learn more about the collection, visit http://alexanderstreet.com/products/wasi.htm

 Source: Alexander Street Press, http://alexanderstreet.com

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Vernier Publishes New Physics Experiments Lab Book

Vernier Software and Technology has published the "Advanced Physics with Vernier - Mechanics" lab book, offering a new set of experiments for more in-depth introductory physics courses, such as college physics, Advanced Placement Physics, or International Baccalaureate Physics. Covering a wide range of topics from motion, Newton's laws, momentum, energy, and simple harmonic motion, the Advanced Physics with Vernier - Mechanics lab book contains 19 experiments that are conducted using a combination of commonly used lab equipment and Vernier sensors and hardware.

The Advanced Physics with Vernier - Mechanics lab book includes complete student experiments with materials lists for each experiment, instructions for data collection on a computer or LabQuest, data tables, and probing questions. An Instructor Information section for each experiment includes directions for setting up experiments, helpful hints, and sample graphs and data. An included CD provides editable word-processing files of the student sections (Microsoft Word files) and support material, including videos and Logger Pro data-analysis files.

The Advanced Physics with Vernier - Mechanics lab book is available for purchase for $48.00. For more information and to view the complete list of experiments, visit www.vernier.com/cmat/phys-am.html

Source: Vernier Software & Technology, www.vernier.com

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