Issues & Controversies

Objective, In-Depth Analysis of Hundreds of Today’s Hot Topics
    Fact Sheet (PDF) Request a Free Trial
    For pricing or more information, email or call 1-800-322-8755.

    About This Product

    Take a quick look at the overview video for Issues & Controversies:


    Featuring a dynamic design and a wealth of features, Issues & Controversies helps researchers understand today’s crucial issues by exploring hundreds of hot topics in politics, government, business, society, education, and popular culture. Our Issue and Article pages make it simple to see all of the available content in one place; thousands of editorials and opinions from renowned newspaper sources via NewsEdge keep researchers on top of trending topics; and our enhanced navigation and search results and improved organization and taxonomy give users an intuitive and user-friendly research experience. Updated weekly, with an extensive backfile, Issues & Controversies offers in-depth articles—each presenting both sides of an issue clearly, coherently, and without bias—made to inspire thought-provoking debates. Its straightforward presentation of the key facts, arguments, history, and current context of today’s most important and timely issues makes the database an ideal resource for research papers, debate preparation, and persuasive writing assignments. The articles are written by our own expert writers and editors, and each article includes a full range of supporting materials.


    • Extensive, objective, and comprehensive coverage: Issues & Controversies features timely, in-depth articles covering complex, hot-button issues in politics, government, business, society, education, and popular culture. Designed to inspire thought-provoking debates, each article presents both sides of an issue clearly and without bias.
    • Pro and con statements: Each Issues & Controversies article presents clear pro/con statements that highlight the main arguments on each side of the controversy, presenting a quick, balanced, and succinct synopsis from supporters and opponents and allowing users to explore all of the controversies related to each issue in one place.
    • Original videos and educator support materials: Selected hot-button issues in Issues & Controversies feature overview videos to introduce the topic and exclusive Educator Resources to extend the lesson beyond the articles. Educator Resources include overviews, learning objectives, printable handouts (such as self-assessments with answer keys), discussion questions, and much more.
    • Debate videos: Issues & Controversies includes compelling, thought-provoking, Oxford-style debate videos from the renowned Intelligence Squared U.S. Debate Series, featuring some of the most prominent political figures, journalists, academics, and experts in the United States and throughout the world on a wide range of crucial topics in areas such as crime, law, and justice; economy, money, and business; education; energy and the environment; families and youth; global issues and world affairs; government and politics; health and medicine; race, rights, and liberties; science and technology; and society and culture.
    • QuickTake videos: Issues & Controversies features short, succinct overview videos produced by the global information and technology company Bloomberg that cover major topics such as immigration, climate change, marijuana legalization, the opioid crisis, and e-cigarettes.
    • Editorials: For a broader perspective on contemporary events and conflicts, Issues & Controversies features thousands of editorials and opinions via NewsEdge from prominent newspapers and magazines worldwide and across the political spectrum—including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Miami Herald, Houston Chronicle, Toronto Star, Jerusalem Post, China Daily, Guardian, Atlantic, Nation, and Weekly Standard.
    • Audio content: Issues & Controversies features editorially curated and selected National Public Radio (NPR) audio recordings and podcasts—including episodes of NPR’s Fresh Air and On Point—linked directly to specific articles to enhance context, understanding, and research. Along with the original recordings, many feature transcripts of the entire broadcast or selected highlights.
    • Infographics: Issues & Controversies includes more than 150 stand-alone infographics, presenting vast amounts of information in easy-to-access charts, graphs, and tables that make it simple for users to visualize statistics and quickly grasp essential ideas.
    • Rich related resources: Issues & Controversies contains a topic-based Reuters® newsfeed, editorial cartoons, timelines, primary sources, speeches, congressional testimony, newspaper editorials, and discussion questions and activities that prompt researchers to do their own critical thinking and analysis.
    • Curriculum Tools: This section in Issues & Controversies features writing and research tips for students and educators, including:
      • Advice on analyzing historical documents, evaluating online sources, and more
      • Tips on presenting research, including avoiding plagiarism, citing sources, summarizing articles, writing research papers, and writing and delivering speeches
      • Educator tools, including advice on assessing students’ speeches and interviews, exploring point of view with students, holding a town hall meeting, preventing plagiarism, using editorial cartoons in class, and debates.
    • Primary sources: Issues & Controversies includes original documents with introductory paragraphs that provide context and background to the sources.
    • Court cases: Issues & Controversies contains original, searchable stand-alone articles that summarize key court cases—including those decided by the U.S. Supreme Court—on major issues in contemporary society, including abortion and reproductive rights, affirmative action, animal rights, capital punishment, drugs, gun control, health care, immigration, racial profiling, and more. Each article explains the background of the case, the legal issues it raised, the court’s decision, and its impact.
    • Full coverage of each National High School Debate Topic: The National High School Debate Topics section of Issues & Controversies includes comprehensive articles on every annual debate topic since 1997, covering such critical issues as alternative energy, domestic surveillance, and national infrastructure.
    • Bill of Rights in Debate: Many of the issues covered by Issues & Controversies deal with constitutional questions; however, the various sides in a debate often interpret what the Constitution says differently. The “Bill of Rights in Debate” section deepens understanding of the U.S. Constitution in contemporary life by linking Issues & Controversies articles directly to constitutional rights.
    • Presidential Elections and Administrations: Issues & Controversies provides comprehensive background articles on all presidential races since 1996—including articles about the candidates’ views on campaign issues, party platforms, and excerpts from convention speeches—and the presidencies of Reagan, Clinton, Bush, and Obama.


    • Correlated to Common Core, state, national, provincial, International Baccalaureate Organization, C3 Framework for Social Studies, national STEM, and Next Generation Science Standards
    • Issues from the headlines, covering the most controversial issues of the 21st century, including capital punishment, drug legalization, energy and climate change, free trade and the economy, gun control, health care, immigration, racial profiling, and world poverty
    • Thousands of links to key news stories, timelines, primary source documents, and additional resources giving researchers context, insight, and perspective
    • Searchable Reuters® newsfeed, updated hourly, giving students access to the latest news and headlines
    • Background Encyclopedia content
    • Comprehensive chronologies and overview articles
    • Improved search features, including enhanced filters, Search Assist technology, and suggested search terms
    • Read Aloud tool
    • Google Translate for 100+ languages
    • Ability to download text articles as PDFs
    • Enhanced Save-to-Folder functionality
    • Dynamic citations in MLA and Chicago formats, with EasyBib export functionality
    • Searchable Support Center with valuable help materials, how-to tips, tutorials, and live help chat.

    LMC/ARBA‘s Best of Reference Award, “Best Overall Reference” and “Best Electronic Reference” categories

    The ComputED Gazette‘s Education Software Review Award (EDDIES)

    The ComputED Gazette‘s Best Educational Software Award (BESSIES)

    Library Journal Best Database

    Tech & Learning’ISTE Best of Show Award

    Tech & Learning’s Annual Award of Excellence, “Best Upgraded Products” category

    SIIA CODiE Awards Finalist, “Best Source for Reference or Education Resources” category

    “…accessible and easy to navigate and will be useful to students working on research projects.”
    American Reference Books Annual

    “Access to a wide variety of controversial issues will provide students with the building blocks for forming their own opinions, leading to thoughtful research papers and debates. The content and presentation are impressive…will give the [competition] a run for its money…”
    Library Journal

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—Red Flag Laws

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: RED FLAG LAWS: Should Courts Confiscate Guns from People They Deem a Danger to Themselves or Others? SUPPORTERS ARGUE It is common sense to allow courts to remove guns from people who family members or police suspect pose a danger to themselves or others. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—Brexit

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: BREXIT: Will Leaving the European Union Benefit the United Kingdom? SUPPORTERS ARGUE The European Union is a bloated, undemocratic organization corrosive to national sovereignty. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—Populism

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: POPULISM: Are Populist Movements Good for Liberal Democracy? SUPPORTERS ARGUE Populism stems from the failure of mainstream political parties to address the concerns of average voters, and populist movements are essential for the health of democracy. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—E-Cigarettes and Vaping

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: E-CIGARETTES AND VAPING: Should the Federal Government Strictly Regulate the E-Cigarette Industry? SUPPORTERS ARGUE E-cigarettes and other vaping products are potentially harmful to public health, and the federal government needs to carefully scrutinize them before they are sold to consumers. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Check Out the New Overview Video

    Issues & Controversies’ straightforward, unbiased presentation of the key facts, arguments, history, and current context of today’s most important and timely issues makes the database an ideal resource for research papers, debate preparation, and persuasive writing assignments—but why not see for yourself? Check out the overview video below!   Our brand-new overview video gives you an up-close look at the depth and breadth of this award-winning database, including: The easy-to-use Search and Browse options The timely, in-depth pro/con articles covering complex, hot-button issues in politics, government, business, society, education, and popular culture The links to primary sources, court cases, media including videos from the Intelligence Squared U.S. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—Universal Basic Income

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: UNIVERSAL BASIC INCOME: Should the U.S. Government Guarantee Every American a Minimum Income? SUPPORTERS ARGUE A universal basic income (UBI) would lift millions of Americans out of poverty and provide a financial safety net as advances in artificial intelligence make traditional jobs obsolete. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—De-extinction

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: DE-EXTINCTION: Should Scientists Resurrect Extinct Species? SUPPORTERS ARGUE Humans have a moral responsibility to bring back extinct species and use them to revitalize struggling ecosystems. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: More Bloomberg QuickTake Videos Added

    Seven additional QuickTake videos from Bloomberg, one of the most respected names in the news business, have just been added to the award-winning Issues & Controversies. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—Mindfulness in the Classroom

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: MINDFULNESS IN THE CLASSROOM: Should Public Schools Teach Meditation and Yoga? SUPPORTERS ARGUE Meditation and yoga can help students learn patience and compassion while relieving stress and improving focus. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—Self-Driving Cars

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: SELF-DRIVING CARS: Should Automated Cars Be the Future of Transportation? SUPPORTERS ARGUE Self-driving cars will reduce accidents, increase productivity for commuters, lower greenhouse gas emissions, decrease traffic congestion, and provide mobility to those unable to drive. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: New QuickTake Videos from Bloomberg

    The award-winning Issues & Controversies now has an exciting new resource: QuickTake videos. These 19 short overview videos (with more coming soon!), produced by the global information and technology company Bloomberg, cover major topics such as immigration, climate change, and the opioid crisis. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—Sanctuary Cities

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: SANCTUARY CITIES: Should Local and State Governments Adopt Policies That Protect Undocumented Immigrants from Deportation? SUPPORTERS ARGUE Local governments have a responsibility to protect immigrants by establishing themselves as sanctuaries. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—Border Wall

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: BORDER WALL: Should the United States Build a Wall Along the U.S.-Mexico Border? SUPPORTERS ARGUE The United States needs to build a wall to prevent illegal immigrants, drugs, and dangerous criminals from secretly crossing into the country. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—Presidential Pardons

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: PRESIDENTIAL PARDONS: Does the President Have the Power to Self-Pardon? SUPPORTERS ARGUE The U.S. Constitution grants the president nearly absolute pardoning power. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—U.S.-Saudi Relations

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: U.S.-SAUDI RELATIONS: Does the U.S.-Saudi Alliance Advance U.S. Interests? SUPPORTERS ARGUE A close alliance with Saudi Arabia gives the United States the opportunity to invest in an expanding market while guaranteeing steady oil prices. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: Featured Controversy—Conflicts of Interest and the Presidency

    Featured in Issues & Controversies: CONFLICTS OF INTEREST AND THE PRESIDENCY: Should President Donald Trump—and All Future Presidents—Fully Divest from Their Business Interests? SUPPORTERS ARGUE To avoid conflicts of interest, presidents must fully divest their assets and place them in blind trusts. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: 2018 Updates

    Issues & Controversies is continuously updated and enhanced, increasing the educational value of this award-winning resource. Here is a recap of some of the content updates made so far this year. Read More ›

    Issues & Controversies: 2017 Year in Review—Updates and More

    Issues & Controversies has been updated and enhanced throughout the past year, increasing the educational value of this award-winning resource. Read More ›

    You may also like…