Gale Launches Learning Centers for Primary Sources

November 02, 2021
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Gale, part of Cengage Group, is helping faculty and students enhance their digital literacy and critical thinking skills. The company has launched its new Learning Centers for Gale Primary Sources. Built with the student researcher in mind, the Learning Centers orient new users to the content and topics available in a digital archive, spark inspiration for new research topics and provide guidance and best practices for searching, browsing, citing and reusing primary sources. The Learning Centers also provide faculty and librarians with an invaluable, all-in-one instructional tool that helps learners get acclimated with a primary source database, saving educators’ time creating teaching material. Now students can develop their digital literacy and critical thinking skills through practical examples and advanced search strategies, enabling better learning outcomes.

Read The Gale Review blog about how user feedback drove the development of the Learning Centers.

With fake news at an all-time high, the Learning Centers comes at a time when digital literacy has never been more critical. Stanford researchers found that 98% of high school students are unprepared to judge the credibility of information on the internet.  The new Learning Centers provide equity of access into digital scholarship to build digital literacy skills that prepare students for their post-college careers.

“Exploring primary sources can be an empowering experience for the student researcher, allowing for open-ended inquiry and the development of critical thinking skills,” said Seth Cayley, vice president of global academic product at Gale. “The Learning Centers will help set students on that path, as well as provide instructors with tools to help tailor classes that are engaging with digital archives for the first time.”

The Learning Centers are organized in four key workflow steps: 1). Conceptualize 2). Find 3). Read  4). Use. The steps are based on the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) and Society of American Archivists (SAA) Guidelines for Primary Source Literacy learning objectives. Each workflow section features detailed instructional content that’s engaging and accessible. The content in each individual Learning Center is tailored to the digital archive it supports. Content includes topic overviews, sample searches, essays by subject experts, step-by-step search strategies, case studies and discussion questions to encourage further exploration.

Gale Primary Sources that currently have Learning Centers enabled include:

For institutions who already have access to these archives, the Learning Centers are automatically enabled at no additional charge. More Learning Centers will be enabled in phases over time into all Gale Primary Sources.

For more information on the Learning Centers for Gale Primary Sources, visit:

Attending the 2021 Charleston Library Conference virtually, November 2-5? Sign up for a demo of the Learning Centers at the Gale virtual booth. Follow Gale on:

Cengage Group, an education technology company serving millions of learners in 165 countries, advances the way students learn through quality, digital experiences. The company currently serves the K-12, higher education, professional, library, English language teaching and workforce training markets worldwide. Gale, part of Cengage Group, provides libraries with original and curated content, as well as the modern research tools and technology that are crucial in connecting libraries to learning, and learners to libraries. For more than 60 years, Gale has partnered with libraries around the world to empower the discovery of knowledge and insights – where, when and how people need it. Gale has 500 employees globally with its main operations in Farmington Hills, Michigan. For more information, please visit