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CHESTNUT HILL, MA., August 7, 2000 -- Harcourt General, Inc. (NYSE:H), the global education, training, assessment and professional information company, today announced it has signed a content licensing and distribution agreement with Vital Source Technologies, Inc. (VSTi), a Raleigh, North Carolina-based digital publisher to offer Harcourt Health Science product in a digitized format to five leading dental schools this fall semester.

The agreement between Harcourt and VSTi will allow Vital Source to bundle digital versions of Harcourt’s Mosby, W. B. Saunders, and Churchill Livingstone dental school textbooks along with each participating dental school’s internal curriculum course manuals on a single DVD. Using the VSTi VitalviewerTM XML browser, students and faculty will be able to quickly and easily access content across all four years of their curriculum enabling them to find specific subject matter in a highly structured, context-sensitive search environment.

In addition to enhancing the student/faculty experience with reference and resource aids, the VSTi service creates a copyright compliant environment on campus, giving Harcourt Health Sciences the ability to maximize student and faculty use of their products in a cost-effective manner. “Giving students the option to purchase their textbooks digitally makes sense in our ever increasing world of technology-based products,” said Peter Hoenigsberg, president of Harcourt’s Worldwide Scientific, Technical and Medical Group. “We see our agreement with Vital Source Technologies as a way to improve educational resource access on campuses and are excited to be pioneers in this area. We are convinced that students and professors will derive great benefits from having their entire curriculum in one easily accessible and portable place.”

“This relationship with Harcourt is a strong endorsement of VSTi's technology and implementation plan,” said Dr. Robert Watkins, president and founder of VSTi “Our initial customers are excited about Harcourt’s desire to participate in this new product offering, which marks a dramatic shift in the way educational resources will be accessed and utilized by students and faculty at these schools.”

Beginning in August 2000, VSTi will deliver the digitized Harcourt publications to incoming freshman students at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio Dental School; the State University of New York at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine; The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, New Jersey Dental School; Boston University’s Goldman School of Dental Medicine; and New York University’s Kriser Dental Center. Since the DVD product is comprehensive and includes the entire curriculum for the dental school student, the disk also has content from other publishers.

Dr. Kenneth Kalkwarf, dean of UTHSCSA Dental School stated during this week’s implementation, “This product opens the door for those in education to move toward an environment that allows students to access, evaluate, and use information to solve problems. As educators, one of our goals, is to direct students toward an environment in which resources are easily accessible and manageable. This product helps accomplish this goal.”

Harcourt, Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Harcourt General, Inc. (NYSE:H), a leading global multiple-media publisher, provides educational, training and assessment products and services to classroom, corporate, professional and consumer markets. Harcourt Health Sciences includes W.B. Saunders, a leading medical publisher; Churchill Livingstone, Europe's leading English-language health science publisher; and Mosby, a publisher of nursing, allied health and medical books and journals.

VSTi is a six-year-old privately held Raleigh, NC based digital publisher developing and implementing its Vital ViewerTM and Vital BookTM products for health science learning centers in the U.S. market. The dental curriculum agreement is part of a larger alliance between Harcourt and VSTi that includes technology licensing and joint plans to extend the VSTi platform into other educational training arenas.

For more information contact William Chesser at (919) 755-8105 for VSTi or Shahir Kassam-Adams at (215) 238-7836 for Harcourt Health Sciences.


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