Library of Congress Country Studies

Website review by
Susan Yudt, Common Sense Media
Library of Congress Country Studies Website Poster Image
Dry but reliable social studies site.

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No ads. There's a link to the U.S. Government Bookstore.

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that there's nothing inappropriate on this educational site, but the reading level is probably too high for younger kids.

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What's it about?

The Library of Congress's COUNTRY STUDIES Web site contains simple HTML versions of books that were originally published in hard copy by the Federal Research Division between 1986-98. They cover history, culture, geography, and other key topics about several dozen countries from around the world. The site also has shorter, more up-to-date profiles of countries, presented in PDF format. Users can browse by country, choose a location from a map, or search by keyword.

Is it any good?

Country Studies is a useful alternative to textbooks for teens doing history or social studies research -- it's easy to navigate and find information quickly. Of course, since the books are 10-20 years old, they can't be used for current events projects. The Portals to the World section helps fill in that gap, providing a wealth of links to country-specific resources. Although Country Studies contains excellent information, the site is extremely text-heavy -- teens looking for an interactive educational experience won't find it here.

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