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Issues & Controversies Online

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About This Database

Objective Analysis of Hundreds of Today's Hot Topics

Featuring a dynamic design and a wealth of features, Issues & Controversies helps researchers understand today's crucial issues by exploring hundreds of hot topics in politics, government, business, society, education, and popular culture. Our Issue and Article pages make it simple to see all of the available content in one place; thousands of editorials and opinions from renowned newspaper sources via NewsEdge keep researchers on top of trending topics; and our enhanced navigation and search results and improved organization and taxonomy give users an intuitive and user-friendly research experience. Updated weekly, with an extensive backfile, Issues & Controversies offers in-depth articles—each presenting both sides of an issue clearly, coherently, and without bias—made to inspire thought-provoking debates. Its straightforward presentation of the key facts, arguments, history, and current context of today's most important and timely issues makes the database an ideal resource for research papers, debate preparation, and persuasive writing assignments. The articles are written by our own expert writers and editors, and each article includes a full range of supporting materials.

Highlights:

  • Exclusive, extensive, and objective coverage: Issues & Controversies features timely, in-depth articles covering complex, hot-button issues in politics, government, business, society, education, and popular culture. Designed to inspire thought-provoking debates, each article presents both sides of an issue clearly and without bias.
  • Pro and con statements: Each Issues & Controversies article presents clear pro/con statements that highlight the main arguments on each side of the controversy, presenting a quick, balanced, and succinct synopsis from supporters and opponents and allowing users to explore all of the controversies related to each issue in one place.
  • Original videos and educator support materials: Selected hot-button issues in Issues & Controversies feature overview videos to introduce the topic and exclusive Educator Resources to extend the lesson beyond the articles. Educator Resources include overviews, learning objectives, printable handouts (such as self-assessments with answer keys), discussion questions, and much more. 
  • Debate videos: Issues & Controversies includes Oxford-style debate videos from the renowned Intelligence Squared U.S. Debate Series, featuring some of the most prominent political figures, journalists, academics, and experts in the United States and throughout the world covering a wide range of crucial topics in areas such as crime, law, and justice; economy, money, and business; education; energy and the environment; families and youth; global issues and world affairs; government and politics; health and medicine; race, rights, and liberties; science and technology; and society and culture.
  • Editorials: For a broader perspective on the issues, Issues & Controversies features thousands of editorials and opinions from renowned newspaper sources—including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Toronto Star, Miami Herald, Houston Chronicle, and more—via NewsEdge.
  • Audio content: Issues & Controversies features editorially curated and selected National Public Radio (NPR) audio recordings and podcasts—including episodes of NPR’s Fresh Air and On Point—linked directly to specific articles to enhance context, understanding, and research. Along with the original recordings, many feature transcripts of the entire broadcast or selected highlights.
  • Rich related resources: Issues & Controversies contains a topic-based Reuters® newsfeed, editorial cartoons, timelines, primary sources, speeches, congressional testimony, newspaper editorials, and discussion questions and activities that prompt researchers to do their own critical thinking and analysis.
  • Curriculum Tools: This section in Issues & Controversies features usage and research tips for students and educators, including:
    • Advice on analyzing historical documents, evaluating online sources, and more
    • Tips on presenting research, including avoiding plagiarism, citing sources, summarizing articles, writing research papers, and writing and delivering speeches
    • Educator tools, including advice on assessing students’ speeches and interviews, exploring point of view with students, holding a town hall meeting, preventing plagiarism, using editorial cartoons in class, and debates.
  • Primary sources: Issues & Controversies includes historical documents with introductory paragraphs that provide context and background to the sources—perfect for document-based learning and strengthening critical-thinking skills.
  • Full coverage of each National High School Debate Topic: The National High School Debate Topics section of Issues & Controversies includes comprehensive articles on every annual debate topic since 1997, covering such critical issues as alternative energy, domestic surveillance, and national infrastructure.
  • Bill of Rights in Debate: Many of the issues covered by Issues & Controversies deal with constitutional questions; however, the various sides in a debate often interpret what the Constitution says differently. The “Bill of Rights in Debate” section deepens understanding of constitutional issues in contemporary life by highlighting links to Issues & Controversies articles in which the first 10 amendments and the 14th Amendment of the Constitution play a role in the debate.
  • Presidential Elections: Issues & Controversies provides comprehensive background on all presidential races since 1996—including articles about the candidates’ views on campaign issues, party platforms, excerpts from convention speeches, and much more.

Features:

  • Correlated to Common Core, state, national, provincial, International Baccalaureate Organization, national STEM, and Next Generation Science Standards
  • Issues from the headlines, covering the most controversial issues of the 21st century, including the Trump administration and U.S. Congress, abortion, affirmative action, capital punishment, drug legalization, energy and climate change, gay rights, global affairs, gun control, health care, immigration, racial profiling, and world poverty and development
  • "In the News" section for each issue
  • Thousands of links to key news stories, timelines, primary source documents, and additional resources giving researchers context, insight, and perspective
  • Searchable Reuters® newsfeed, updated hourly, giving students access to the latest news and headlines
  • "By the Numbers," offering statistical material with every article and issue
  • Background Encyclopedia content
  • Comprehensive chronologies and overview articles
  • Improved search features, including enhanced filters, Search Assist technology, and suggested search terms
  • Read Aloud tool
  • Google Translate for 100+ languages
  • Ability to download text articles as PDFs
  • Enhanced Save-to-Folder functionality
  • Dynamic citations in MLA and Chicago formats, with EasyBib export functionality
  • Searchable Support Center with valuable help materials, how-to tips, tutorials, and live help chat.

Issues & Controversies Issues & Controversies Online News Services 01/01/2007

"...offers balance, clarity, and an overview of pros and cons that are vital to building critical-thinking skills...an excellent (and affordable) resource for secondary research..."


Library Journal

"...praised the high quality and comprehensiveness of the resource...it could work particularly well in flipped classrooms due to the wealth of topics for students to read and research before discussing their findings in class."


Tech & Learning

"Access to a wide variety of controversial issues will provide students with the building blocks for forming their own opinions, leading to thoughtful research papers and debates. The content and presentation are impressive...will give the [competition] a run for its money among high school, community college, and college libraries."


Library Journal

"...a wealth of information for students working on any research project...readily accessible and easy to navigate...Recommended."
Library Media Connection

"This database is a nice addition to [Facts On File's] family of online products...Recommended."


Choice

"...accessible and easy to navigate and will be useful to students working on research projects."


American Reference Books Annual

"Issues & Controversies is an ideal speech and debate database...Through the inclusion of newspaper editorials, editorial cartoons, and contact information this database provides unique content...There's no debate that this database deserves an A."


School Library Journal


Education Software Review Award (EDDIES), "High School Social Studies Database" category


- The ComputED Gazette

2015 CODiE Awards Finalist, "Best Source for Reference or Education Resources" category


- SIIA

"Best Databases" in the "Best for High Schoolers" category


- Library Journal

Best Educational Software Award (BESSIES), "High School Social Studies Database" category


- The ComputED Gazette