Posts Tagged ‘debating’

Just in Time for Back-to-School: 9 New Leading Issues from SIRS Issues Researcher

The pro-con format of our Leading Issues helps students pick a topic and understand its context with overviews, essential questions, statistics, global perspectives, viewpoints, supporting arguments, and critical thinking prompts. The editors at ProQuest were busy this summer selecting articles and graphics, creating and updating timelines, and adding new Leading Issues to ensure your students and patrons have the most up-to-date and relevant content on current controversial issues.

Introduce your student researchers to these engaging new Leading Issues:

The Arts: New main category (Sub-issues: Art and Cultural Repatriation, Arts Censorship, Banned Books, Music Lyrics, Popular Culture, Public Funding of the Arts, Violence in Mass Media)

Abortion Funding: Are U.S. policies like the Mexico City Policy, which restrict federal funding to global health organizations that provide abortions or abortion information, a good idea?

Driverless Vehicles: Do the benefits of driverless vehicles outweigh the risks?

Net Neutrality: Are net-neutrality rules necessary?

Prescription Drug Prices: Should the government take steps to lower prescription drug prices?

Public Funding of the Arts: Should the government allocate federal funds in support of the arts and art programs?

Sharing Economy: Should the sharing economy be regulated?

Transgender Children: Should children be allowed to transition to the gender they identify with?

U.S.-Mexico Border Wall: Should the U.S. build a wall along the border with Mexico?

Driverless Vehicles Leading Issue in SIRS Issues Researcher

The following Leading Issues have also been updated, and new Essential Questions added in some cases, to reflect the current focus of the controversy:

Child Care, Digital Media, Dietary Supplements, Epidemics, Human Smuggling, Indigenous Peoples, Pipelines, Poverty, International (main issue), Privacy and the Press, Refugees, Reporters and Shield Laws, School Choice, Social Media, and Women in the Military.


Which Leading Issues topics are most popular with your students? Are there any topics you would like to have added? Let us know in the comments section below or tweet us with #ProQuest.

ProQuest Guided Research products equip students to think critically about current issues. Free trials are available.

Constitution Week: Debates for the Classroom

Research has shown that students involved in debating programs are more likely to graduate from high school. Learning and participating in the art of debating helps to develop students’ critical-thinking skills and can even improve academic performance.

Imagine the debates that took place during the Constitutional Convention, held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1787. The debates centered around the drafting of the U.S. Constitution, which was completed and signed on September 17 of that year. We honor this document each year by celebrating Constitution Week, which falls during the week of September 17. Students across the country delve into the history of the U.S. Constitution, study the lives of the people responsible for its creation, examine the 27 constitutional amendments, and explore the debates surrounding them at the time of their ratification.

There’s another way students can explore the Constitution and its amendments. Countless interpretations of constitutional amendments are debated today in living rooms, in political demonstrations, on Capitol Hill, and in the Supreme Court.

Why not bring these contemporary debates into the classroom?

Contents of a lockbox are secured to help prevent possible injury to family members. <br \> Office of Training and Development/U.S. Customs and Border Protection, via ProQuest SIRS Government Reporter [Public Domain]

Contents of a lockbox are secured to help prevent possible injury to family members.
Office of Training and Development/U.S. Customs and Border Protection, via ProQuest SIRS Government Reporter [Public Domain]

The 2nd amendment, which protects U.S. citizens’ right to bear arms, is a leading issue worthy of discussion. Some people are staunch advocates of this civil liberty, citing its magnitude in self-protection and self-defense. Others propose stricter gun-control laws, believing that the types and number of firearms should be regulated. This amendment is hotly debated, and is often cited in Supreme Court cases. What would this debate look like in your classroom?

Citizenship and privacy rights, among other liberties, are outlined in the 14th amendment, which was ratified following the Civil War. How is this amendment interpreted today, and how do those interpretations present themselves in the Supreme Court? In the highly controversial issue of abortion, for example, interpretation of this amendment’s clause on privacy is often debated. The 14th amendment is also cited in court cases involving same-sex marriage. Is this an amendment that your class could research, discuss, and debate?

Whatever the constitutional amendment or resulting controversy, SKS provides the information necessary for research, illumination, and understanding. Visit September’s SKS Spotlight of the Month on Constitution Week to glimpse the product’s varied material on the U.S. Constitution and its amendments, including Leading Issues coverage, news and magazine articles, reference works, court cases, and Web sites. Your students will start their research here, and then plunge deeper, fueling their minds with facts and opinions for exciting classroom debates.