Students today have a wide range of sources to study from, and the most popular ones are via the Internet. The kind of online resources that are available for students has been growing exponentially and the range of topics is as varied as the students themselves. According to recent research, using online resources can be of great benefit to most students.
Federal sponsored resources
The bulk of online resources are provided by the US government through its myriad sites, covering subjects as varied as history, social service, zoology and more. The Educational Resources Information Center (ERIC) gives access to over 1.2 million records of articles, books, conference papers, policy papers, technical reports, research syntheses and educational materials. New material is added twice a week, keeping the database up to date. Besides students, this database is also used by librarians, teachers and policymakers, to name a few. Please visit Future Education Policies for further information regarding the new government and future of education in the United States.
The US Dept of Educations Federal Agency Educational Resources gives links to all the governments educational resources and has a fund of information for students of all ages and majors. Under the Federal Resources for Educational Excellence (FREE) are over 30 governmental agencies that make educational resources easy for students to find. Over 1,500 learning resources are included in this database from a wide variety of federal sources. The Digital Classroom offers archival data from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) for students to use in their assignments and is widely used by students of all ages.
Local and private resources on the rise
America Learns is a great resource for tutoring services for students, while the YouthFriends Volunteer Reading Guide offers help to students in improving their reading and comprehension skills. In the San Francisco area, the Partners in School Innovation helps low-income students of public schools to attain superior educational knowledge. The IPL (Internet Public Library) is the internets first public library and functions to promote the use of books and libraries among students, teachers and schools.
Students looking for material for their class papers can access the national Public Library service through its Public Library Locator service, while the Library of Congresss database of lost titles can find authors of any book, poem or short story. For students looking for information on the National Park Service (NPS), the Learning Place has educational and other material related to the nations cultural and natural heritage.
Many US universities offer learning and study tips for high school and college students. Virginia Tech offers online workshops on improving study skills and articles on time management for students looking to improve their learning proficiency. George Washington University gives tips on improving study habits, managing time, increasing memory power and how to take tests. For information on writing skills, the University of Wisconsin-Madison teaches how to improve your style of writing and on using proper citations. Another language tool is Wordsmyth, which is a reference source combining the power of a dictionary and thesaurus.
A popular educational tool online is Education.com, which acts as an educational resource primarily for parents and teachers, but also has resources for students. Covering over 4,000 articles so far, the site is growing fast and is based on a social networking model, which has made it very user friendly. For additional information about using online tools in education please read Internet in Schools.
Starting at an early age
For younger students, the HeadSprout program offers assistance in reading in the form of animated lessons on the web. Knowledge Adventure has a JumpStart World program that combines academics and adventure to make learning fun and long lasting, using 3D games and challenges. These programs are not free resources and are usually used by teachers and parents.
In the Neighborhood Networks program, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development offers access to education through computers to students as well as adults and senior citizens, in an effort to empower them economically.