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Using the web provides both opportunities and problems

The web can provide great opportunities for learners to find interesting and fresh material. In the often controversial areas of global issues, the web can provide the wide range of views and the richness of information it is desirable for learners to have access to.

However, using the web can be a frustrating experience for learners. It can be especially hard for a language learner to find relevant material, since search engines can yield huge numbers of results that are difficult to sift through.

But it is possible to:


Helping students to search the Web through Directed Web Searches

Below are a list of ready-made web-searches on topics related to the material on this site. They use category searches from Lycos and Yahoo. When learners click on a URL, they will go to the page on the relevant search engine that gives a list of sites that are clearly related to the topic.

The guided searches have been divided into four categories:
Globalisation
War & Peace
Human Rights
The Environment.

Of course, you will probably want to check the sites out, yourself. The URLs are all here, on this page, for convenience when you're planning your lessons.
But theURLs for each category have also been made into separate pages for easy student use. They can be accessed from the "Read about Real World Issues" section on the page For Learners.

(Note: if you should re-stroke these URLs, the apparent word spaces are underlines, eg Current_Events)

Globalisation

Third World Debt
http://dir.lycos.com/News/Current_Events/Economy_and_Business/Third_World_Economies/Global_Debt_Issues/

Microcredit
http://dir.lycos.com/Society/Issues/Poverty/Hunger/Solutions/Microcredit/
http://dir.yahoo.com/Business_and_Economy/Global_Economy/Development/Microcredit/

LETS
http://dir.lycos.com/Society/Organizations/LETS_-_Local_Exchange_Trading_Systems/

Fair Trade
http://dir.yahoo.com/Business_and_Economy/Trade/Political_Issues/Fair_Trade/
http://dir.lycos.com/News/Current_Events/Economy_and_Business/Globalization_and_Free_Trade/Fair_Trade/

World hunger
http://dir.yahoo.com/Society_and_Culture/Issues_and_Causes/Poverty/Hunger/

War and Peace

The general issue of War and Peace
http://dir.yahoo.com/Society_and_Culture/Issues_and_Causes/Peace_and_Nonviolence/

Iraq: Sanctions
http://dir.lycos.com/Society/Issues/Economic/Economic_Sanctions/on_Iraq/Debates/
http://dir.yahoo.com/Government/Politics/Political_Issues/Iraq_Crisis/Economic_Sanctions/

DU weapons
http://dir.lycos.com/Society/Issues/War%2C_Weapons_and_Defense/Nuclear/Depleted_Uranium/

Landmines
http://dir.lycos.com/Society/Issues/War%2C_Weapons_and_Defense/Landmines/

Human Rights

General Issues of Human Rights
http://fullcoverage.yahoo.com/Full_Coverage/World/Human_Rights/
http://dir.yahoo.com/Society_and_Culture/Issues_and_Causes/Human_Rights/

Child Labour
http://dir.yahoo.com/Society_and_Culture/Cultures_and_Groups/Children/Child_Labor/

Euthanasia: the Right to Die
http://dir.yahoo.com/Society_and_Culture/Death_and_Dying/Euthanasia/

Abortion
http://dir.yahoo.com/Health/Reproductive_Health/Abortion/

Organ Transplants
http://fullcoverage.yahoo.com/Full_Coverage/Health/Organ_Transplants/

Sweatshops
http://fullcoverage.yahoo.com/Full_Coverage/Business/Sweatshops/ http://dir.yahoo.com/Business_and_Economy/Labor/Sweatshops/
http://dir.lycos.com/News/Current_Events/Economy_and_Business/Employment_and_Income/Sweatshops/

The Environment

General issues
http://fullcoverage.yahoo.com/Full_Coverage/Science/Environment_and_Nature_News/

Mining
http://dir.lycos.com/Science/Environment/Mining
http://dir.yahoo.com/Science/Engineering/Mining/Issues/


Media awareness / media literacy

Anybody can put up anything on the web. Some websites are accurate and authoritative. Others are.... not! It can be hard to tell. It can be even harder in a second language.

Here are some websites designed to improve learners' abilities to make intelligent judgments. They are not directed specifically towards language learners, but they can be useful.

ICYouSee: T is for Thinking
http://www.ithaca.edu/library/Training/hott0.html

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, or Why It's a good idea to evaluate web sources
http://lib.nmsu.edu/staff/susabeck/eval.html

Hoax or Scholarly Research? You Decide
http://www.media-awareness.ca/eng/med/class/teamed2/grasintro.htm

Search engines can be very helpful, but often they give too many irrelevant results. Here is a site designed to help web users use search engines more effectively.

Seven Steps to Web Searching
http://edweb.sdsu.edu/WebQuest/searching/sevensteps.html


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Last Modified: 9 June 2000