SANTA MONICA, Calif., May 19, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- America's largest provider of free pro and con research on controversial issues passed a milestone by documenting over 5,000 schools in all 50 states and 66 countries where educators have used the critical thinking resources at www.procon.org.
The breakdown of schools is 1,229 elementary and middle schools (24.6%), 2,547 high schools (50.9%), and 1,226 colleges and universities (24.5%).
The founder, CEO, and Chairman of ProCon.org, Steve Markoff, commented, "Many people just don't have the time, money, or skill to sift facts from bias and gather all the quality information they need to make better decisions. Thankfully educators across the country recognize this problem and use ProCon.org as their antidote to bias so that future generations can be more informed citizens. We are grateful for their support and thrilled to have so many teachers using our free services."
From the 533 schools in California to the 380 schools in New York and the thousands of schools in between, educators have appreciated their access to award-winning research designed to stimulate critical thinking by presenting both sides of important social issues.
SELECTION OF TEACHERS' COMMENTS ABOUT PROCON.ORG IN 2014
"I use it [ProCon.org] to teach English and create discussion lessons. Students read the pros and cons of a topic, and then we talk about language they don't understand, and have a discussion about their own views on the topic." Evan Sarver, English teacher at International House Language Center (Kharkiv, Ukraine), May 2, 2014
"I have my students use ProCon.org as a starting place for problem/solution essays. Many students chose larger state or national issues, and procon.org offers reliable, academic information that helps students begin to understand their topic and take an informed approach in writing their persuasive essays." Pat Houlton, English teacher at Spring Valley High School (Spring Valley, WI), Apr. 21, 2014
"The web-based resource www.procon.org... is also an excellent tool for research. This site provides plenty of text- and visual-based questions that students can use to research a given topic and develop a written argument. Not only are the students developing research skills; they are using their skills in argumentation writing to express what they know and understand." Katherine S. McKnight, Common Core Literacy for ELA, History/Social Studies, and the Humanities, Apr. 18, 2014
"A very useful website that you will want to consider when helping your students discover topics and think about good mentor texts for arguments." Jeremy Hyler and Troy Hicks, Create, Compose, Connect!: Reading, Writing, and Learning with Digital Tools, Apr. 16, 2014
"An incredible resource to help my sixth grade students find information for their argumentative essays. I appreciate the easy to follow format and nonpartisan stance." Melanie Park, 2012 Indiana Teacher of the Year, Riverview Middle School, Apr. 14, 2014
"I use ProCon.org in my classroom. My school is always looking for great sites like yours to contribute to the daily conversations that go on in our classes on a regular basis." Timothy M. Dove, 2010-2011 & 2011-2012 Ohio Teacher of the Year, Phoenix Middle School, Apr. 14, 2014
"I find your site a useful resource for the Argumentation and Persuasion course I teach at Stanford." David Voelker, Adjunct Professor at Stanford University, Apr. 4, 2014
"Whether students are interested in video games and violence, standardized testing in school, or vegetarianism, they are likely to find an interesting debate on ProCon.org that models civil discourse and the correct use of evidence." Erik Palmer, Teaching the Core Skills of Listening and Speaking, Apr. 1, 2014
"Lots of controversial issues come down to more than just facts. For these, you need to seek out multiple points of view. A good place to start is ProCon.org, which will give you different perspectives on controversial issues." Dr. Alec Patton, Humanities teacher at High Tech High North County School (San Diego, CA), Mar. 23, 2014
"As you are working to support students' argumentative writing skills, be sure to check out the abundant resources found on ProCon.org. Operated as a not-for-profit organization, ProCon.org is rich with unbiased, transparent information on a wide range of controversial issues." Kristina Smekens, Founder and Lead Consultant at Smekens Education (Warren, IN), Mar. 10, 2014
"[T]hank you for your website and providing current, relevant information... I have referenced it often when working with other health care providers and students." Laura M. Borgelt, Associate Professor at the University of Colorado at Aurora, Feb. 18, 2014
"We use it to research controversial topics before writing our positions on them. It helps with close reading, critical thinking, Socratic Discussions, and argumentative writing." Ms. Shelly Burton, English Language Arts teacher at E.F. DuVall Junior High (Deer Lodge, MT), Jan. 29, 2014
"I used it to show students how to develop an argument, how to evaluate sources, and how to read evidence critically and analytically. I also used it for content materials for particular arguments. I think ProCon.org is an excellent resource!" Jacquie Werner-Garvin, Language Arts Teacher at Red Cedar School (Bristol, VT), Jan. 20, 2014
"I use it every single year because every single year there are multiple point-of-view papers or Pro-Con projects or persuasive essays. As the librarian, it is part of my PPT [PowerPoint] for how to use databases and/or trustworthy websites." Ms. Susie Dunbar, Librarian at Desert Ridge High School (Gilbert, AZ), Jan. 6, 2014
"I used ProCon.org in my classroom to help teach law students oral advocacy skills. My students carefully review ProCon's excellent topical pages and make three minute oral presentations on one side of a current event. This helps prime students for success in the oral advocacy portion of my Legal Skills course." Jason Potter, Lecturer at the University of Massachusetts School of Law (Dartmouth, MA), Jan. 5, 2014
ProCon.org (online at www.procon.org) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit public charity whose mission is promoting critical thinking, education, and informed citizenship. Information is presented on 50 different ProCon.org issue websites in subjects ranging from Obamacare, alternative energy, and medical marijuana to the death penalty, illegal immigration, and gay marriage.
ProCon.org websites are free of charge and require no registration. The websites have been cited dozens of times by the governments of 17 countries (including the United States where 28 states and nine federal agencies reference ProCon.org).
ProCon.org had over 16.6 million unique readers in 2013 and more than 2.9 billion hits since its inception in 2004.
ProCon.org has been referenced by mainstream media over 1,200 media times, including: 60 Minutes, ABC, Associated Press, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, BBC, Bloomberg, Business Week, CBS News, CNN, CNBC, The Economist, Esquire, Forbes, FOX News, The Guardian, Houston Chronicle, Huffington Post, Los Angeles Times, Mother Jones, NBC, New England Journal of Medicine, New York Times, PBS, Reuters, Slate, USA Today, Washington Post, Wired, and many others.
For information about ProCon.org, visit www.procon.org.
The ProCon.org social media accounts are available at:
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