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     August 2005


Welcome back!

Enclosed is this month's free newsletter for ProQuest Platinum™ subscribers. This newsletter is designed to help teachers, librarians, and administrators stay informed about the latest changes to your subscription, while providing classroom resources and giving tips for using your ProQuest solutions in a variety of settings.

Don't miss our online archive for access to past issues, and to make changes to your newsletter options.


Our product development team is constantly reviewing customer feedback and making changes to our learning resources to meet your needs. Several updates to our ProQuest family of products were recently completed, and we wanted to bring them to your attention.

New Streaming Video Training

Looking to get up to speed with ProQuest Platinum, Gold, Silver, or Bronze? Don’t have time to attend one of our hour-long web training classes? Don’t fret!

Our K-12 training team has created a streaming video training session to meet your needs. Just set aside an hour of your time to view the session, then practice what you’ve learned.

You’ll find a link to the new streaming video module on our new, combined Platinum product information page.

Teachable Moments: Spread Learning & Everyone Wins

Early Monday morning, the first issue of our newest free monthly newsletter--ProQuest Teachable Moments--will arrive in your email in-box. This new offering contains classroom-ready activities to help you maximize use of your ProQuest digital solutions in your school.

We need your help to spread the word to the teachers you interact with everyday. As an existing subscriber, you can turn our Teachable Moments into a winning moment--for you! It's easy and there's no obligation.

Talk to at least five (5) educators in your school, and offer them a free email subscription to ProQuest Teachable Moments. View and print a sample issue online.

When you're ready, reply to this email (or compose a new message to and include your full name, address, phone number, and email address, along with a list of at least five (5) full names and email addresses of interested teachers in your school or district.

We'll send them an invitation to subscribe, and enter your name into a drawing for a free print set of the 2006 CultureGrams World Edition
(4 volumes).

Once subscribed, their name will be automatically entered into a drawing for a free high-tech brief bag!

That’s it--five names, with opportunities for everyone to win.

We need your list by October 31, 2005, and the drawing will take place on November 10, 2005. Good luck!

More Useful & Easy: Revamped K-12 Website

Our Web designers and content experts were hard at work all summer long, just like you! Our popular website has been enhanced with:
  • Integrated product information pages, so there’s no need to mine several pages of the site to find all related resources to each product
  • New navigation tabs at the top of every page to speed users to our Educator Tools, Training & Support Materials, and Product Information related to each ProQuest solution
  • Direct free trial sign up links for our newest products
  • Feedback tool on the Contact Us page so users can direct their ideas and comments to our development team more quickly and efficiently
  • More than two dozen new and revised documents and resources to help you spur usage and increase student achievement in your school
Have additional feedback or ideas related to our website? We're waiting to hear from you. Please send email directly to, or use the General Feedback category on our new feedback form to send us your thoughts.

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Hurricane season has arrived and millions of coastal residents in the southeastern states are preparing for these tropical storms and the billions of dollars of damage that they can do to property. Atlantic, Caribbean, and Gulf of Mexico hurricanes are born in the oceans of western Africa. Hurricane researchers have discovered many of the secrets of how hurricanes are born, what drives their intensity, and what course they are most likely to take. But no one has discovered a way to prevent them from forming or to divert their course away from land.

Students will benefit from research activities that focus on the science of predicting, measuring, tracking, and diverting or reducing the fury of a hurricane. Just what is the future of hurricane research and prevention? What are some of the ways that scientists are working on these problems? What progress is being made on these solutions? Who is working on these solutions and why?

ProQuest Platinum provides a variety of articles that helps to give students some ideas and information about this aspect of hurricane science:
  1. Click the Topics tab and type “hurricane research” in the Find Term box.

  2. Click the Research AND Hurricane topic > View Documents.

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CultureGrams can help you broaden your students' understanding of the world and its peoples. Our World Edition includes 187 country profiles, written for junior high students and older. CultureGrams also has a Kids Edition and a States Edition, geared for upper elementary students. These editions include kid-friendly profiles of 68 countries and all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia.

CultureGrams goes beyond mere facts and figures to deliver an insider's perspective on daily life and culture, including the history, customs, and lifestyles of the world's people.

Country: Libya (New!)

+ Capital City: Tripoli
+ Population: 5,631,585
+ Area: 679,362 square miles (1,759,540 sq km)
+ Real GDP per capita: $7,570
+ Adult literacy rate:
92% (male), 71% (female)
+ Infant mortality:
26 per 1,000 births
+ Life expectancy: 71 (male), 75 (female)

Did You Know?
  • The highest temperature ever recorded on Earth was 136°F (58°C) at Al Aziziyah, Libya, in 1922.
  • The ancient Greeks used the word “Libya” to refer to most of North Africa.
  • Before the discovery of oil in 1959, Libya had one of the lowest standards of living in Africa; now it has one of the highest.
Personal Appearance
In general, people may wear any clothes they wish, as long as they are not too revealing. In cities, men and women may wear jeans and short-sleeved shirts at work or around town. Civil servants and businessmen may wear a suit and tie. Especially in rural areas, most women wear a long-sleeved blouse or jacket, floor-length skirt, and head scarf. In cooler weather, men and women may wear a long tunic (called a hawli). Hawlis are always white for men but may be any color for women. Older and rural men may wear the hawli with a vest and a cap, especially on Fridays. In rural areas, people tend to wear traditional clothing, and women nearly always wear a head scarf.

It is improper for a man to touch a woman in public unless she is his wife or sister; however, women often hold hands with each other. Many people consider it improper to smoke or use coarse language in front of women or older men. It is considered rude for a woman to spit, cross her legs at the knee rather than the ankle, or stand with her hands on her hips.

Dating & Marriage
Traditional weddings are elaborate, lasting up to six days. Because of the time and expense involved in such an event, many modern Libyan weddings last from one to three days. Still, many customs have been retained, including signing a marriage contract; having families exchange gifts to demonstrate wealth and generosity; using henna dye to decorate the hands and feet of the bride and other females; and hosting large parties for both families. These parties often feature a great deal of food, music, dancing, and gifts. One-day weddings are most common in cities, where most of the wedding festivities take place in a hotel banquet room.

Oil transformed Libya into one of Africa's wealthiest nations. Crude oil and refined petroleum products account for more than a third of GDP. But the Libyan economy has also faced many challenges, the largest being the sanctions imposed on Libya by the UN as punishment for sponsoring terrorism. Shortages in many goods occurred, inflation increased, and technology and infrastructure grew out of date. Since Libya has agreed to comply with UN guidelines, the sanctions have been removed and the economy has improved.

What’s New at CultureGrams
Earlier this month, we released the new print and online editions of CultureGrams 2006 (World, Kids, and States)! These exceptional resources get better every year! Here’s a brief run-down of what’s new.
World Edition
Five new CultureGrams: Angola, Ivory Coast, Libya, Myanmar, Suriname
Option to export tables (Sortable, Country Data) into Excel
Citation information
Option to select PDF versions of all detailed country maps (better-quality printing)
New and updated navigation maps

Kids Edition (online only)
New countries: Ireland and Saudi Arabia
Ability to view and print country outline maps (PDF format for clean print results)
Ability to view and print country detail maps (PDF format for clean print results)
Citation information
New and updated navigation maps

States Edition (online only)
State detail maps (PDF format)
State county maps (PDF format)
State outline maps (PDF format)
U.S. political map (PDF)
U.S. topographical map (PDF)
U.S. outline map (PDF)
Citation information
Expanded data tables (15 new categories)
Bird song audio link in State Symbols
Other state symbols (longer list of additional symbols--without images)
Expanded government information
To find out more about CultureGrams, connect to our website today.

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Each month, our SKS WebSelect™ and Discoverer WebFind™ editorial teams scour the Internet for top-quality sites that help teachers teach and students learn. Although no Internet site can supplant a quality research database, these vetted resources offer unique resources that are sure to be of interest.

Return to Flight: Kids’ Page
Organization: National Aeronautics and Space Administration

The Space Shuttle has returned to flight, and you can join in the excitement! Take tours, watch Space Shuttle videos, find fun facts, and play Return to Flight games.

National Environmental Trust
Organization: National Environmental Trust (NET)

National Environmental Trust is a non-profit, non-partisan group established in 1994 to inform citizens about environmental problems and how they affect our health and quality of life. Learn more about global warming, air pollution, children’s environmental health, heritage forests and what you can do to help.

The Art of War
Organization: The National Archives of the United Kingdom

"View our fascinating and colourful collections of illustrations, propaganda, cartoons, films and art created during World War Two." (The National Archives of the United Kingdom)

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Take a few minutes this month to build your brain power! Here’s a small set of sample searches that will help you experience different search techniques to get the most out of your subscription.
London bombings
body burden chemicals
Space Shuttle Discovery

When the results appear, click one or more Suggested Topics and Browse Suggested Publications links to delve deeper into each topic.
Have you conducted a sample search recently that you think other users might benefit from? Send your recent queries to If we choose your submission, we'll contact you for additional information and permission to use your story in a future issue.

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Our ProQuest product trainers are standing by to help you get the most out of your subscription--and learn more about our other digital learning resources! We offer a wide variety of online training sessions each month.

You can download three ready-to-print versions of forthcoming training dates and times in PDF format.

Our training sessions cover after-school hours within several time zones. Best of all, there's no cost to participate. All you need is a computer with Internet access, a phone, and one hour. Register for a course today!

You may also sign up for a timely enewsletter to receive training dates each month via email as soon as they're available.

Finally, don’t miss our new Training Center! You’ll find information about our online and in-person training offerings, along with training packs for use with our full line of learning
resources, and more.

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What features of Platinum do you and your students find the most useful? Have you recently used or are planning to use it as part of an assignment or student research project? How do you and other curriculum leaders in your institution use your ProQuest educational resources?

Share your experiences with peers working in schools across the country and around the world--through an upcoming Product News Bulletin! We're waiting to hear from you. Please send your ideas and stories to:

If we choose your submission, we'll contact you for additional information and permission to use your story in a future issue.

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Increase the usage of your digital learning resources! Our forward-to-a-friend service makes it easy to instantly send this product bulletin -- and all the great ideas and information it contains -- to others in your subscribing institution with a click of your mouse.

Also, be sure to encourage them to sign up for our SIRS®, CultureGrams™, ProQuest®, ProQuest Historical Newspapers™, eLibrary®, eLibrary Curriculum Edition™, and additional enewsletters as appropriate.

To subscribe to any or all of these offerings, click here.

To change your email address, unsubscribe, or modify your subscription settings, click here.

ProQuest offers a growing family of K-12 classroom-focused, subscription-based online research tools. Many of these education solutions offer reading level-linked (lexile) content, support 21st-century information literacy skills, and help schools differentiate instruction across all curriculum areas.

Learn more about all of our tools here, tap into our training resources and videos, and don't miss our new eLibrary research tool (more). We also have a pair of special resource pages just for teachers (with lesson plans) and librarians.


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