Posted June 13, 2016
By Holly Hibner, Adult Services Coordinator, Plymouth District Library (MI)
As libraries continually seek to be a valued educational partner in communities, schools, and institutions, bringing trustworthy digital content into the natural path of their users has never been more important. To make it easier for people to find and use this relevant, authoritative information, Gale, a part of Cengage Learning, has partnered with Google for Education in two ways: providing intuitive integration of popular workflow tools through Google Apps for Education and indexing content in Google Scholar. With more than 50 million Google Apps for Education teachers and students worldwide, and an average of over 40,000+ Google search engine queries per second, Google is indisputably the place where people get their answers.
Your library users will find these Google tools invaluable in their daily lives. Consider a trip to the doctor’s office. Patients can search their library’s Gale content for information about their diagnosis, medical tests, and treatments. GVRL eBook titles such as The Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine, The Gale Encyclopedia of Senior Health, and The Gale Encyclopedia of Cancer contain valuable knowledge for a variety of medical concerns. Downloaded to Google Drive on the patient’s device, articles can be discussed with a medical professional right in the doctor’s office. Questions can be answered, fears can be alleviated, and terms can be explained when patients come to their appointment.
Another great way to take advantage of the integration of Google tools within GVRL content is when preparing for a trip, whether in country or abroad. Gale offers a variety of DK travel eBooks such as DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Hawaii, DK Eyewitness Travel: Family Guide Rome, and DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Pacific Northwest, among others. When paired with the power of the Google integration, travelers can take this tourist information with them. Going to Toronto? A quick search within your library’s Gale travel content will give you information about points of interest, like Casa Loma and the CN Tower. Other searches can inform you about Canada’s metric system, transit system, and currency.
When I travel someplace new, I like to know what to expect ahead of time. Do they drive on the right or the left? What is the currency exchange rate? Is there a subway system? All of these questions can be answered ahead of time and downloaded to Google Drive to create a travel portfolio to refer to as needed. A search in Gale’s General OneFilecan be limited by document type to maps, which could also prove handy on a trip!
Teachers and college professors will find that this integration improves students’ organizational, communication, and collaboration skills. For example, educators can create reading lists for students — complete with highlights and notes — through Google Classroom. They just use Gale databases like
Literature Criticism Online, InfoTrac, or any of the In Context suite of databases to find articles, select text to highlight and add notes, and download to their Google Drive. The content appears immediately in Google Drive, which integrates seamlessly with Google Classroom.
As a reference librarian, I am asked for help finding information on all kinds of subjects. I have found the Google integration with Gale databases to be invaluable. I can show patrons how to download articles on just about any subject right to their Google Drive. This saves paper and time, and makes libraries and librarians more relevant than ever. A patron recently approached me about creating a business plan for a brewery he’d like to open. We used
Gale’s Business Collectionto find recent articles on a variety of brewery subtopics — everything from design and architecture to automated bottling equipment — and downloaded them directly to his Google Drive. He later added highlights and notes to a few of the articles and came back to ask for further assistance on those ideas. He was also able to share the articles directly with others involved in his startup.
In similar reference transactions, I’ve helped:
- A book club leader download book reviews and author insights from Literature Resource Center to her Google Drive
- A woman download articles in LegalTrac to her Google Drive to take to a meeting with her divorce lawyer to help build her case
- A councilman download an article from the Michigan Chronicle through InfoTrac Newsstand to his Google Drive to share with other council members
A township resident download an article from Opposing Viewpoints In Context to her Google Drive to discuss with her state representative at a meeting about needed road repairs
As you can see, everyone — including patients, travelers, teachers, students, and entrepreneurs — can benefit from the improved access that the Google integration with Gale databases has created. It has formed a seamless link between the relevant, authoritative content of Gale databases and the ease of access and familiarity of Google tools.
Want to know more about the Google and Gale integration? Learn more about the partnership today!