Questia School is an online research library with access to books, journals, articles and encyclopedias, plus specially developed tools to guide students step by step through the research and essay writing process.
Pangbourne College, Berkshire began subscribing to Questia School in November of 2017 and have used the resource extensively since then.
Their librarian, Christelle Aguillon, tells us how Questia School has benefited their students:
“Questia School is a powerful online resource, which enables secondary school students to improve their digital literacy. Not only does it offer a wide range of secondary sources in myriad subjects, but it also facilitates the lengthy and daunting process of structuring and writing dissertations. The ‘writing center’ and the ‘tutorials’ guide the pupils by giving them pointers through a series of clear and informative notes, diagrams and videos. I believe that Questia School has positively changed the way our students approach researching, whether it be for the completion of their EPQ, NEA or school projects.”
As Christelle mentions, Questia School has many research tools useful for streamlining the research process for students. Tools include highlighting, note taking, project folders, and citation and bibliography tools. As well as a writing center, and interactive research tutorials.
Here Pangbourne College Sixth Form students explain how they have used Questia School’s tools, and how the resource has supported their research:
“Questia School has been an incredibly useful resource when it came to writing my dissertation, as it contained many relevant and insightful sources. The ‘keywords search’ option enabled me to gain specific information, and the fact that I was able to highlight certain passages, in the books or articles I was reading, was beyond effective. The ability to catalogue websites and other external sources was also very useful, as it provided me with a complete bibliography of all my sources. Finally, I could store the sources in which I was interested in multiple separate folders; this feature helped me to organise the results of my research.” Henry, Sixth Form
“Questia School was very helpful at keeping all my sources for my EPQ project organised in one place. As any EPQ student will know, the vast amount of sources can be overwhelming, and to have one folder to store them can be extremely useful and efficient. It also proved very convenient when it came to the end of the project to form a bibliography out of all of these sources. What should have been a long and tedious process was sped up by Questia School; I was able to form a bibliography from pressing a button, as I had saved most of my sources within my Questia School project folder.” Cameron, Sixth Form
With the vast amount of information available to students online, students can find it challenging to find reliable sources for their research, Questia School provides students with a trusted academic environment to do their research. This has been a valuable aspect of the resource for students at Pangbourne College as the Senior Deputy Head, Will Williams, explains:
“The internet’s ubiquitous knowledge means students need support in progressing through research. Questia School’s functions from searching to referencing provide the ideal solution to myriad problems for young people not brought up on reading and researching for long projects. This prepares them for the now and future of their journey.”