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Elizabeth Hillman, Discovery Education
(240) 662-2664, elizabeth_hillman@discovery.com 

Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education
(240) 662-5563, stephen_wakefield@discovery.com 


DISCOVERY EDUCATION TECHBOOKS EARN TOP RATINGS IN A RECENT INDEPENDENT REVIEW OF DIGITAL CONTENT FOR K-12 CLASSROOMS

Analysis of SpotOn™ Digital Science, Social Studies, and Math Resource Reviews Shows Discovery Education Had the Highest Average Overall Submission Score in Each Area

Silver Spring, Md. (March 11, 2016) – Discovery Education’s Science, Social Studies, and Math Techbooks were recently rated as top digital resources available to K-12 classrooms by SpotOn, an initiative of The Ohio State University.  SpotOn is a free, online database that currently has reviews of 360 pieces of digital content from 24 top publishers, including Discovery Education, McGraw-Hill, Houghton Mifflin, Pearson, and Carnegie, as well as free educational resources. SpotOn’s reviews are based on an academically validated rubric which is made up of the four SpotOn Dimensions: content quality, pedagogy, technology, and standards. An award-winning digital textbook series, Discovery Education’s Techbooks are aligned to rigorous standards, support a comprehensive curriculum, and include robust professional development.

Discovery Education analyzed over 200 submissions from publishers in the subjects and grade bands for which Techbooks are available (Science K-12, Social Studies 6-8, Math 6-12). The analysis revealed that when the SpotOn Scores are aggregated by publisher, Discovery Education rates highest among all  publishers. Additional analysis revealed:

  • Among the 12 publishers providing secondary Mathematics digital content, Discovery Education Math Techbook, on average, had the highest SpotOn Score overall, as well as the highest average ratings in each of the four SpotOn Dimensions: content, pedagogy, technology and standards.
  • Among the 5 publishers providing middle school Social Studies digital resources, Discovery Education Social Studies Techbook, on average, had the highest SpotOn Score overall, as well as the highest average ratings in each of the four SpotOn Dimensions:  content, pedagogy, technology and standards.
  • Among the 16 publishers providing K-12 Science digital resources, Discovery Education Science Techbook, on average, had the highest SpotOn Score overall, as well as the highest average ratings in the pedagogy and technology dimensions, and the second highest average ratings in the content quality and standards dimensions.

SpotOn was created to support K-12 teachers, administrators, and content decision-makers in the evaluation and selection of digital resources that best meet their instructional requirements and the learning needs of their students. SpotOn’s reviewers are credentialed educators who undergo extensive training on the SpotOn rubric, which was developed by researchers at The Ohio State University and academically validated through a national survey.

Discovery Education’s Social Studies Techbook series uses an inquiry-based instructional approach that emphasizes informational text literacy, analytical writing, and problem solving skills that students will apply in the classroom and beyond. Each subject area includes primary source documents and activities, digital investigations, multimedia reference library, interactive maps, and informational texts.  Utilizing an inquiry-based format built on the 5E model, the Science Techbook series, through hands-on labs, digital explorations, an interactive glossary, and data analysis activities, helps teach students to read, write, and think like scientists. The Math Techbook series transforms the way students and teachers experience math through engaging instructional strategies and real-world problems that motivate and excite students with diverse learning styles. Developed by Discovery Education’s team of expert math educators with the input of teachers and administrators from across the country, Math Techbook uses a Discover, Practice, Apply cycle built on the three pillars of rigor:  conceptual understanding, procedural fluency, and application.

“As more and more school systems make the shift to digital content as a core instructional resource, teachers, curriculum directors, and administrators need unbiased reviews to assist them in making informed choices on classroom content,” said Dwayne Sattler, Managing Director at SpotOn. “SpotOn is proud to help educators confidently select the digital instructional materials that meet the specific needs of their classroom.”

Discovery Education understands that support for teachers is critical to implementing successful learning initiatives.  Therefore, all Techbooks include research-based professional development that supports educators as they integrate new digital content and resources into classroom instruction. The Discovery Educator Network (DEN), a global community of education professionals, further connects teachers and administrators around the world with social media, virtual conferences, and in-person events that inspire innovation and facilitate idea sharing.

“Our analysis of SpotOn’s ratings of Discovery Education’s digital content demonstrates how closely our Techbook series is aligned to the needs of classroom teachers and administrators,” said Kelli Campbell, senior vice president and digital learning officer at Discovery Education. “We are grateful to SpotOn for the opportunity to participate in their review process, and will continue to listen to the feedback from educators worldwide as we evolve our services to meet the ever changing needs of students.”

To see Discovery Education’s analysis of its SpotOn reviews, visit http://blog.discoveryeducation.com/blog/2016/03/10/discovery-education-comes-out-on-top-in-new-ratings/.

For more information about Discovery Education’s Techbook series or other services and resources from Discovery Education, visit www.discoveryeducation.com.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

About SpotOn
SpotOnReviews.org, an initiative of the Ohio State University College of Education and Human Ecology, is a free online database which evaluates K-12 digital content using an academically validated rubric from researchers at The Ohio State University to help classroom teachers, administrators, curriculum supervisors, and other education stakeholders make effective resource decisions.