Tag Archives: Textbooks

Digital Delivery and Higher Education at BISG’s MIP Confab

“In the third annual focus on Higher Ed Publishing in The Book Industry Study Group’s series of Making Information Pay conferences, speakers offered a wealth of data that show a college textbook market moving slowly but surely to digital delivery, the rise of, and illicit support for, shadow digital libraries and the growing popularity of digital learning systems offering interactivity and analytics as well traditional content. The textbook market was about $7.4 billion in 2012; prices for new textbooks, about 2/3 of the market, continued to rise while used book prices held steady in the face of even cheaper alternatives such as rental textbooks.”

via Publishers Weekly

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Student Response to Digital Textbooks Climbs, says New BISG Research

“The popularity of digital textbooks may have hit a tipping point in 2012 as preference by college students climbed significantly, according to new research from the Book Industry Study Group (BISG)’s ongoing study of Student Attitudes Toward Content in Higher Education. The first installment in Volume Three of the study, powered by Bowker Market Research, shows that students’ preference for print over digital texts dropped from 72 percent in November 2011 to 60 percent in late 2012. During the same period, preference for online homework systems (MindTap, MyLab, McGraw-Hill Connect, etc.) rose from 9 percent to 14 percent. The picture isn’t entirely rosy for digital texts: satisfaction with these works declined in 2012, with only 26 percent of students citing they were “very satisfied” with their digital text, down from 30 percent in 2011.”

via BISG

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Textbook price-check tool met with doubt

“Campus bookstores hate the idea, and even some college students are skeptical of the new effort by a former California lawmaker to help them save money on textbooks for hundreds of classes on nearly every campus from Alabama to the Yukon Territory. It’s a free price-check that lets students compare textbook prices and rentals, and buy from the source they like best. The new online tool comes from former state Sen. Dean Florez, president of the 20 Million Minds Foundation in Sacramento, which lobbies for low-cost textbooks and is behind legislation, SB1052, to create a low-cost digital textbook library in California.”

via SF Chronicle

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Amazon Launches Textbook Rental

“Amazon.com, Inc. today announced the launch of Amazon Textbook Rental. Now college students can choose from thousands of textbooks to rent for the semester and save up to 70%. To rent a textbook, simply search Amazon.com for the book, select “Rent Now,” choose shipping and payment options, and check out. All textbook rentals are Fulfilled by Amazon and are eligible for Free Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25, and Prime Free Two-Day Shipping. At the end of the rental period, returns are free and simple with a prepaid, printable label.”

via Amazon Press Release

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Patent granted to encourage purchase of digital textbooks

“In a newly-approved patent, an economics professor hopes to bring to the academic publishing world what seems to be forthcoming in the video game industry—new restrictions that would seemingly eliminate a secondary market for digital goods and prevent legal borrowing. Last week, the 2006 patent for a “Web-based system and method to capture and distribute royalties for access to copyrighted academic texts by preventing unauthorized access to discussion boards associated with copyrighted academic works” was approved by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The patent was granted to Joseph Henry Vogel, a professor at the University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras.

via Ars Technica

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Reading With Pictures: The Graphic Textbook

Wired – “I’m going to assume you’ve already heard the argument that comics are a great way to teach literacy, and not re-hash that here. Comics are also a pretty good way to teach other things as well: it’s a very blurry line between comics and instructional diagrams, for instance. The combination of words and pictures is something that just clicks for many readers, particularly when it’s done well. Reading With Pictures is a non-profit organization that aims to “get comics into schools and get schools into comics.” Tom Stillwell wrote about their first anthology last year, which covered a variety of subjects as their proof of concept, and was very well-received. Now, RWP is seeking funding on Kickstarter for The Graphic Textbook, a 144-page comics anthology covering Social Studies, Math, Language Arts, Science — all drawn from a list of common core standards. Their hope is to weave comics-based learning into virtually every subject by producing a book that can actually be used as a textbook, and not simply a literacy aid.”

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College Faculty Continue Their Love Affair with Print Textbooks, says New BISG Study

BISG Press Release – “A first ever survey of college faculty perceptions toward classroom materials found that professors continue to equate their own and their students’ successes in the classroom to the use of materials such as textbooks and most prefer print formats. Faculty Attitudes Toward Content in Higher Education, led by the Book Industry Study Group (BISG) and powered by Bowker Market Research, reveals that 93 percent of faculty feel students who use required course materials receive higher grades in class. An even higher percentage feel the use of these materials by students enables professors to be more effective teachers.”

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FCC Pushes E-Textbooks on U.S. Schools Facing Budget Crunch

Bloomberg – “A Federal Communications Commission effort to bring digital textbooks to U.S. students faces resistance from schools with limited budgets for buying devices such as Apple Inc. (AAPL)’s iPad tablet computer. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski announced plans yesterday to get all U.S. students from kindergarten through the 12th grade using electronic titles within five years. The initiative, which doesn’t involve any additional U.S. government funding, is meant to speed adoption of e-textbooks. The U.S. spends $7 billion a year on textbooks, and digital versions are the exception, rather than the rule, Genachowski said.”

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Back To School: Should An E-Reader Be On Your List?

Wired – “E-readers have been in the news quite a bit lately —new models are reaching the feature to price point ratio where sales have been skyrocketing, leaving even tablets in the dust in terms of adoption rates. The coming holiday gift-giving season combined with the pending release of Harry Potter e-books (finally!), increased investment in e-book versions of college textbooks and Amazon’s expected release of a tablet-based Kindle device have whipped up speculation that we are looking at the perfect storm for e-reader sales this Fall. Many parents of elementary and high school kids are wondering if now might be the time to invest in an e-reader as part of their back to school expenditures.”

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More and more, college students go buy the e-books

Boston Globe – “Digital textbooks are a no-brainer for many, and sales are up this year.”

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