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Online Information

September 25, 2012

What does online information mean? It’s a broad term, but here are some specific examples of what you might find through your library …

Have you ever needed to know how to disassemble the brake calipers on your ten-year-old Ford Taurus? How about a diagram of the hydraulic system for your Case 2294 tractor? What if you have trouble with the fuel injection on your Polaris Sportsman 500 ATV?

And what if you don’t want to come into the library for a manual? To tell the truth, we’ve only got the Taurus covered in print. But all these can be addressed online through two library resources: “Auto Repair Reference Center” and “Small Engine Repair Reference Center.”

The small engine center includes the Case 2294, which doesn’t seem small to me, as well as ATVs, boats and water craft, snowmobiles, and all kinds of other equipment.

These are new to our collection of “EBSCO databases.” If that phrase means nothing to you, don’t worry. EBSCO is a brand name and “database” is an unhelpful term for any of these collections.

Some brand names give you a hint of what they’re about. One popular online service we offer is Mango Languages, and you might guess: online language courses. It offers 45 languages from Arabic to Vietnamese, plus English ESL courses specifically geared for 15 languages.

But brand names don’t help much, really—just as your own name doesn’t say much about you, whether it’s Ann or Veronique.

Learning Express Library? Well, it’s about learning, and in particular about testing and the building of fundamental skills. If you have a GED or SAT or PANCE or PTCE or whatever test to take, you can get help here. Practice and reviews are available at all levels from elementary students to adults.

Universal Class? If you use the library, you probably already have class, but you can take classes online, with real teachers, through Universal Class. The list of classes seems endless, from chakra clearing to Quickbooks. There’s math and history as well as reiki and gardening. Excel, Photoshop, and on and on.

Many of these would be helpful to homeschooled students, but for students of any kind, some of our new EBSCO sites can be a big help. They are “Points of View,” “History Reference Center,” and “Science Reference Center.”

“Points of View” is a large reference center covering controversial issues with main articles and collections of material and opinions from all sides of the issues. I would think many people besides formal students could find this useful. There’s fun stuff from abortion to global warming to torture to Zionism.

“History Reference Center” contains the full text of 2,000 history books, 150 history journals, and many thousands of historical documents, biographies, photographs, and video.

“Science Reference Center” does a similar coverage of the sciences, including mathematics.

The Google search results for keywords such as the Holocaust or Nazis or abortion or any popular student research topic can vary disturbingly over time. Many students are completely uncritical about the source of the information that pops up in front of them.

Resources such as the library offers here should be a great relief to parents and teachers. The library also offers Britannica Online, which contains the Encyclopedia Britannica plus a lot more.

This isn’t everything, but discussions like this can make your eyes glaze over until you have an actual project or need, and when that happens, check with us to see what we might have beyond our shelves. Or explore


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One Comment
  1. Jeff, I love how you’ve described these databases for library customers!

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