Resources for Critical Analysis
Points of View Reference Center contains 400 topics, each with an overview (objective background / description), point (argument) and counterpoint (opposing argument). Each topic features a Guide to Critical Analysis which helps the reader evaluate the controversy and enhances students’ ability to read critically, develop their own perspective on the issues, and write or debate an effective argument on the topic.
Points of View Reference Center provides a balance of materials from all viewpoints with main essays, leading political magazines from all sides of the political spectrum, newspapers, radio and television news transcripts, primary source documents and reference books. The database also offers related images and supplementary research guides for writing position papers, developing arguments and debating.
The content in Points of View Reference Center supports curriculum standards that ask students to analyze informational texts and hone their critical thinking skills. In addition, the interface includes the following features and benefits:
- Reading level indicators (Lexile Measures) to provide educators with an estimate of the search result’s reading difficulty and the approximate grade level reading ability required for comprehension
- Text-to-speech for HTML articles to help struggling readers and those learning English
- Illustrations and images to enhance content delivery and increase student engagement
- Curriculum Standards Module to help educators correlate EBSCO content quickly and easily to Common Core, state- or province-specific curriculum standards
Grade 9 Up These two books incorporate the same basic information to very different effects. Dudley first presents eight pro and con essays on the death penalty. The second section, Model Essays and Writing Exercises, contains compositions based on facts drawn from the introductory pieces with sidebar critiques to explain how a solid opinion piece is shaped and offers exercises for students to follow. Part three deals with facts from various organizations, hints for finding sources of information and narrowing one's topic, and suggested essay themes. This volume may be most useful in a teacher's hands. To simplify the enormous amount of information and opinion surrounding such a controversial topic, Friedman adds full-color photos, cartoons, fast facts, a few graphs, and thought questions to the traditional Opposing Viewpoints format. Under chapter headings Is the Death Penalty Just?, Is the Death Penalty Effective?, and Is the Death Penalty Applied Fairly?, the issue is discussed in clear, unsophisticated language. Illinois Governor George Ryan's explanation for his commutation of death-row inmates' sentences to life in prison without parole is the most cogent piece in the volume. Librarians looking for simplified material or a how-to guide may want to purchase these entries; however, the wealth of information already available, including Gale's own updated, traditional Opposing Viewpoints volume (2006), edited by Diane Andrews Henningfeld, may make these additional purchases. Joanne K. Cecere, Monroe-Woodbury High School, Central Valley, NY
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