Monday, March 26, 2012

Episode 9: Deploying Databases

Image courtesy of NASA
We have previously covered HCPL's most used databases in the 2010 Treasure Hunt.  For the Space Quest, we are going to look at databases that are useful in helping students with homework assignments.  In many cases, multiple databases can help with assignments, so we are going to look at this from the perspective of the types of questions you might be asked.

Homework questions can be challenging and sometimes it is not possible to find the requested information using HCPL resources. Sometimes the teacher may have restricted the type(s) of resources students can consult.  In such cases, the Homework Assignment Response form can be used to communicate to the teacher that the library tried to assist the student.  This form is found on the Forms page of Harriet.

...3,2,1 On to the Quest!

Submit your answers to the questions using the form on Harriet. A good practice is to first type your answers into a Word document. When you are finished, Copy/Paste your answers into the form. This may save you from losing your work. Be sure to submit after you have entered all your answers into the form.
Elijah McCoy
  1. My son's class is studying African-American inventors and he has been assigned Elijah McCoy.  Which two databases do NOT have information about him?
    • Biography in Context
    • World Book
    • World Almanac for Kids Online 
    • Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia 
    • Student Research Center
  2. I'm doing a report on Jim Bowie.  I've found several articles about him (see the databases we searched for Elijah McCoy). What other EBSCO database has biographies of Bowie – and in fact has more than any of our other databases?  Hint – he was a TEXAS hero.
  3. Opposing Viewpoints in Context is an excellent database for students who are doing reports on controversial or societal issues. For example:
    • I have to do a report on why the death penalty should be legal.
    • My teacher assigned us a project on controversial issues.  I have to give the pros and cons of gun control.
    • For my science class, I have to explain why I think that global warming is a hoax.
    Opposing Viewpoints started out as a book series, which is still available.  The database includes the content of the books as well as several other series and related content including news articles, primary source documents, images, video, and websites.
    1. What is the link (it should begin with http:// for one of the websites listed for Nuclear Weapons? Hint: the link should not include
    2. What are the related topics for Cybercrime?
  4. My son, who’s in 5th grade, is doing a science project on which way roots grow when gravity changes.  He needs some articles to back-up his project.  The information sheet on his project says this is geotropism. Which of the below EBSCO databases has the most articles from which to choose?
    • MAS Ultra – School Edition
    • TOPICsearch
    • Middle Search Plus
    • Student Research Center
  5. Kimberly is in second grade.  Her class is doing a unit on endangered species and she has been assigned the Panda and needs age appropriate material.   Which of the following databases has the least age appropriate information?
    • Searchasaurus
    • World Almanac for Kids Online
    • World Book (Kids)
    • Gale Virtual Reference Library
  6. We’re a homeschooling family.  I really want my 5 year old son to learn Hebrew. Do you have something he can do online? 
    1. What database offers this for 5 year olds?
    2. In this database, what are the three topical video areas covered for each language? 
  7. Literature Resource Center (LRC) is an extensive collection of literary criticism and biography. It includes content from:
    • Contemporary Authors
    • Dictionary of Literary Biography
    • Contemporary Literary Criticism Select
    • Gale Literary Criticism series
    • Numerous other works from Gale.
    The primary use for LRC is for students who need criticism or biographical information about literature and/or authors.  For example:
    • I need critical articles about To Kill a Mockingbird
    • We are reading The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and I need information about the book and Mark Twain.
    There are a variety of search options in LRC.  The Basic (default) search is the easiest to use and includes options for limiting by content type and limiting to peer-reviewed publications.
    1. I need peer-reviewed literature criticism on F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby.  How many articles are retrieved under Literature Criticism when you do a Name of Work search and limit to peer-reviewed publications?
    2. I need some literary criticism about Suzanne Collins.  In a keyword search on her name, from what journal is the article Mockingjay by James Blasingame (hint: it's one of the first results under the Literature Criticism tab?
If you have submitted all the correct answers to accomplish this mission, you will receive the Databases Space Vehicle to add to your command. This will let you dig through our cramped but coveted cargo hold for a chance at a great prize. Complete The Fleet by earning all ten vehicles, and you will also receive ten Intergalactic Training Credits. 

1 comment:

  1. Ebscohost seems to be down. Is this just a temporary problem?