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Free Science Library Goes Mobile

Nature Education--a unit of Nature Publishing Group, which puts out Scientific American and the journal Nature--has released a new mobile version of Scitable, a free learning tool for high school and post-secondary science.

Scitable is both a free online library of science learning resources and a platform designed to allow faculty and students to collaborate. Teachers can use Scitable to create classes that incorporate free "coursepacks" (learning resources provided by Scitable), live discussions, blogs, and other resources. Students gain access to content--including e-books--written by scientists and researchers, along with virtual study spaces, topics rooms, and various tools for collaboration. Topics focus on life sciences, with an emphasis on genetics and related subjects, but the service also includes some information for students considering pursuing STEM careers.

According to Vikram Savkar, senior vice president and publishing director at Nature Publishing, the service has so far reached 500,000 students in 165 countries. But, he said, the company has been searching for ways to put Scitable "in the hands of the millions of students throughout the developing world who don't have consistent access to personal computers or broadband. With the launch of our mobile site, any student with a cell phone, even a very basic device, has access to a simplified version of the site that includes a wealth of quality, citable information."

The Scitable mobile edition is expected to be available Wednesday with support for Apple iOS devices, Google Android-based devices, and BlackBerry, among others. Further information can be found here.

About the Author

David Nagel is the former editorial director of 1105 Media's Education Group and editor-in-chief of THE Journal, STEAM Universe, and Spaces4Learning. A 30-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art, marketing, media, and business publications.

He can be reached at [email protected]. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/davidrnagel/ .