Research news and notes from the National Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Education
Digital Library (NSDL) Program [Back Issues]

The Whiteboard Report
March 2004, Issue #1



NSDL Launches New Electronic Newsletter for Educators
March 2004 -- Welcome to NSDL Focus on Education, the new electronic newsletter from the National Science Digital Library (NSDL). As the National Science Foundation's online library for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education, NSDL offers access to collections of technology-enabled resources that support teaching and learning at all levels (preK-12, Higher Education, and Lifelong Learning) in formal and informal settings. Focus on Education has been established to support the effective use of NSDL in educational settings and to enhance dialogue with the diverse audiences that use NSDL including teachers, media specialists, faculty, museum staff, and others. NSDL encourages the readers of this inaugural issue, to provide suggestions and feedback that will help us grow Focus on Education into the most useful publication it can be. In addition, we invite readers to submit articles and announcements of interest to those using digital libraries in education to co-editors Carol Terrizzi ( 607-255-2702), NSDL Communications Director, or Susan Van Gundy ( 303-497-2946).
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NSDL Partners with Eisenhower National Clearinghouse to Develop Middle School Portal
March 2004 -- NSDL Executive Director, Dave Fulker, has announced that the Eisenhower National Clearinghouse (ENC) at Ohio State University will be NSDL's lead partner in the development of an online portal to serve middle school science, technology, and mathematics educators. The middle school portal will be the first of many alternate points of access to NSDL resources and services designed for the specific needs of a more narrowly defined audience. This approach supports a "One Library, Many Portals" philosophy that draws on the strengths of different groups within the NSDL community to better serve the wide range of NSDL users via audience-specific options that complement general access available at
With more than 35,000 middle school educators as current subscribers to ENC publications, the Clearinghouse brings to the project substantial knowledge of the unique challenges and opportunities facing science and math teachers in the middle grades, as well as an international reputation as a trusted provider of curricular and pedagogic resources. NSDL's middle school portal will further benefit from ENC's experiences during more than a decade of building digital library collections and infrastructure including a 23,000 item repository and involvement in five different NSDL collections.
An operational website will be completed by Fall 2004. In addition to technical outcomes, NSDL's partnership with ENC aims to cooperatively promote NSDL and the middle school portal with targeted groups of users, developers, and supporters.
For more information about NSDL's plans for 2004, see "NSDL - Core Integration Middle School Area of Emphasis" in the Community Highlights section of, or contact Project Manager Susan Jesuroga (, with questions.
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NSDL Helps the Nation Celebrate Excellence in Science, Technology, and Mathematics Education (ESTME)
March 2004 -- ESTME Week is a celebration of science and technology co-sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the Department of Education during the week of March 15-20. NSDL has been selected as an exhibitor at the NSF's ESTME Expo on March 16 in Washington, D.C. convened to "demonstrate cutting-edge activities that will change the way we teach and learn science, technology, and mathematics in the twenty-first century". NSDL's "Ask a Scientist or Engineer" service, AskNSDL, will also be featured on the ESTME Week website ( The ESTME Week website offers a variety of suggestions for engaging schools, museums, and communities in science and math activities during this week and beyond. In addition, NSDL encourages educators at all levels to: - Have students or visitors send questions to AskNSDL during ESTME Week ( - Register to be an AskNSDL expert and help respond to student questions. An informational flier can be found at It is easy to register as an expert and requires only as much time as you prefer to commit in responding to the questions that you choose to answer.
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Published from 2000 to September 2009, NSDL Whiteboard Report Archives provide access to prior issues of the bi-weekly newsletter published by NSDL. To subscribe to current news and information about NSDL, go to the NSDL Community Network site, register as a user, subscribe to and participate in selected features found there. For more information contact Eileen McIlvain