Monday, February 16, 2015

South Dakota Library Challenge:  Electronic Resource Edition

Lesson 3  |  Learning Express Library  |  February 13, 2015

*The South Dakota Library Challenge: Electronic Resources Edition was developed by the South Dakota State Library staff to introduce you to the statewide subscription electronic resources. The Electronic Resources Challenge encourages library staff to learn more about the resources that provide expanded access to information and research tools to all schools, libraries and citizens of South Dakota.

For Lesson 3 of the SD Library Challenge, we were asked to explore Learning Express Library.  This resource provides access to current practice exams, self-paced courses and e-books for grades four through adult.  To this lesson, I first took a short quiz to see how much I knew about Learning Express.  Although I answered all of the questions correctly, I mostly felt like I was guessing instead of actually knowing all of the answers!  However, I learned that Learning Express Library is a subscription resource that provides practice exams, self-paced courses, and ebooks to South Dakota citizens and that it can be accessed form home, schools, or libraries.  I also learned that Learning Express contains practice exams for everything from 4th grade skills improvement to licensing exams for careers.

To become more familiar with this resource, I created an account in Learning Express.  I browsed the available middle school and high school exams, and I chose to sample a Grade 6 Expressions and Equations Test.  The test questions that I answered seemed to be great practice for an actual test, and I liked that I could "Score my Test" to see how I was doing.  I also thought that the diagnostic page was helpful.  Being able to view my answers, though, was the most beneficial part of the test experience.  I liked how I could go back to see what I had answered correctly and incorrectly and get an explanation for why it was right or wrong.  

For the second part of this lesson, I located the Career Center within Learning Express.  The instructions were to add one of the courses in the career resources and add it to my center.  I was unable to locate courses to add to my center, so I guess I didn't exactly know where to look.  I did find some ebooks about careers, and I did download one about "Becoming a Culinary Arts Professional."  I don't think that this is what I was asked to do, but I did find the ebook very informative and it certainly seemed to be a self-paced resource, as well. 

For the last part of this lesson, I typed some search terms in the search box.  I tried several different terms related to skills improvement and careers that interested me, and I was surprised at the lack of results that I was offered with most of these searches.  However, when I did hit on a topic that had results, I did like how the results showed me what types of resources were offered.  When I typed in "writing skills," I got three pages of ebooks, tests, and tutorials.  I opened an ebook titled, "Writing Skills Success in 20 Minutes a Day."  It was formatted nicely, had a good practice test, and each short chapter focused on a different skill.  

Overall, Learning Express Library will be a great resource to share with my middle schoolers and high schoolers, but I definitely feel that I need some more practice first!          

1 comment:

  1. Hi, Mrs. Bruch! Yes, this might take a little practice. Do you feel better knowing that I do not like to use the search box either? I prefer to click the "Featured Resources Link" on the home page to find what I'm after. In the Career Center, you did just fine. The area with tutorials is under Resumes & Cover Letters; the other categories in the Career Center have practice tests and ebooks only. Thanks for your work here. We hope you & your students will find it helpful.