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Weekly News Digest

January 8, 2009 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITI’s Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

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Nature Education Launches Free Educational Resource—Scitable

Nature Education has launched Scitable (www.nature.com/scitable), a free, online educational resource for undergraduate biology students and educators. Currently focused on genetics, Scitable combines authoritative scientific information with social media functionality. Scitable is the first product launch from Nature Education, a division of Nature Publishing Group (NPG; www.nature.com) formed in January 2007 to develop innovative education resources and tools for college science students and educators. Nature Education plans to expand the service to other subject areas in the future.

Scitable provides students with free online access to more than 180 overviews of key genetics concepts. The overviews are evidence-based and have been vetted by NPG staff. By connecting with other Scitable users via groups, chat functionality, and other social media features, students can collaborate online with classmates or with a wider community of experts, researchers, and fellow students.

Scitable is also intended as a teaching tool for faculty. Educators can set up public or private groups for their students, providing reading lists, course packs of Scitable articles, and group discussions. Scitable is flexible and easy to use, and it can be incorporated into courseware services such as Blackboard.

Nature Education introduced the Scitable beta site in October 2008 and invited faculty and students to provide feedback. Of 31 faculty who beta-tested Scitable, 97% would recommend it to other teaching faculty, and 100% would recommend Scitable as a study resource to students.

Source: Nature Publishing Group



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