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With the cost of textbooks soaring, many colleges and universities are looking to alternatives to the traditional paper text. The electronic textbook field is still emerging, and higher education is experimenting with the concept in various modes. Explore this resource site—a collection of all EDUCAUSE resources related to E-Textbooks.
EDUCAUSE and Internet2 E-Text Pilots
EDUCAUSE and Internet2 are implementing a series of e-text pilot efforts with colleges and universities to evaluate technologies and business models in the fast evolving migration from traditional textbooks to electronic content. Learn More >
E-Texts Constituent Group
Intended for general discussion in addition to news about the pilot, the E-Texts Constituent Group discusses the rapidly evolving domain of digital textbooks, multimedia supplements, tutorial websites, e-reader/annotation software, and related materials. Learn More >
- Exploring Students' E-Textbook Practices in Higher Education, EDUCAUSE Review Online, July 2015. A two-year university-wide study of students' e-textbook practices found that e-textbook use has increased and become broader demographically.
- Instructor Engagement with E-Texts, EDUCAUSE Review Online, February 2015. This case study of Indiana University's e-text initiative reports on the participation levels and motivations of instructors in engaging with digital textbooks.
- Assessment with E-Textbook Analytics, ECAR Research Bulletin, February 2015, The purpose of this research bulletin is to provide concrete strategies, grounded in research with e-textbook analytics, on how to use data from interactive platforms to inform decisions about supporting student learning with educational technology.
- The Current State and Potential Future of E-Textbooks, ELI Brief, November 2013. This brief discusses the University of Washington E-Textbook pilot and its findings.
- The Changing Textbook Industry, November 21, 2013. Jonathan Band discusses how the internet has disrupted the textbook market and the future changes due to the recent Affordable College Textbook Act.
- eText Clock is Ticking for Textbook Publishers, Blog post written by Bruce Maas, the CIO and Vice Provost for Information Technology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. September 23, 2013
- Understanding What Higher Education Needs from E-Textbooks: An EDUCAUSE/Internet2 Pilot, ECAR Research Report. July 2013. This pilot sheds light not just on the usability of McGraw-Hill textbooks in Courseload but more broadly on the value of digital materials in higher education at this time.
- 7 Things You Should Know About the Evolution of the Textbook, ELI 7 Things, April 2012. This resource examines a new breed of rich-media publishing tools that offer an evolving set of opportunities both for the creation process and for the kinds of resources that can be produced.
- Developing a Digital Textbook Strategy for Your Campus, Florida Distance Learning Consortium, February 2012. This one-day symposium examined institution and state level digital textbook initiatives, including national trends and prevailing models for both publisher digital textbooks and open textbooks.
- eTexts: A Perishable Opportunity for Higher Education?, EDUCAUSE Live!, January 24, 2012 - This EDUCAUSE Live! program addressd the strategic, business, and policy implications for institutions in light of a changing world of consumer electronics and new models for digital educational resources such as eTexts, website tutorials, and other licensed content.
- A Study of Four Textbook Distribution Models, EDUCAUSE Quarterly, December 2011. In preparation for campus-wide e-text adoption, Daytona State College completed a two-year comparative study of four textbook distribution models: print purchase, print rental, e-text rental, and e-text rental with e-reader device.
- Digital Texts and the Future of Education: Why Books?, EDUCAUSE Quarterly, March 2011. Abilene Christian University and GYLO partnered to investigate student attitudes and perceptions of the impact of using a mobile device as a supplemental tool for teaching statistics.
- 7 Things You Should Know About Open Textbook Publishing, ELI 7 Things, March 2011. Open textbooks can be offered by commercial publishers or found in open repositories. Open resources can promote active learning through student interaction with the text, particularly when they contribute to authorship.
Library Items on this Topic
EDUCAUSE Library Items for E-Textbooks
- Kindle Accessibility Concerns Continue
March 13, 2013
The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) continues to raise concerns about the accessibility of Amazon's Kindle devices as well as its Kindle apps for other devices (e.g., the iPad) for pe…
- Ten Years Later: Why Open Educational Resources Have Not Noticeably Affected Higher Education, and Why We Should Care
February 26, 2013
Key Takeaways Open educational resources made a dramatic appearance with the 2002 debut of MIT's Open Courseware initiative. In the roughly 10 years since, OERs hav…
- The Cost and Quality of Online Open Textbooks: Perceptions of Community College Faculty and Students
February 4, 2013
Proponents of open educational resources (OER) claim that significant cost savings are possible when open textbooks displace traditional textbooks in the college classroom. We investigated st…
- Technology Enhancement Tools in an Undergraduate Biology Course
December 10, 2012
Key Takeaways This single-class study sought to evaluate technology-enhanced student engagement by comparing the experiences of students using only an e-textbook with the exper…
- Free Digital Textbooks, More For-Profit Accountability Coming to California
September 28, 2012
As reported by Inside Higher Ed , new laws enacted in California will have significant impacts on higher education in the state. The Los Angeles Times reports that two companion pi…
- ERO Podcast: Cable Green of Creative Commons Talks About Openness
September 5, 2012
In this podcast, Cable Green talks about Open Access, Open Resources, and Open Policies. Cable Green is director of global learning for Creative Commons. …
- Podcast: Wake Forest University's BioBook
July 17, 2012
In this podcast we interview the creators of BioBook, a scalable e-text embodying six central principles of learning. It is organized into self-contained "nodes" that can be revised or …
- Supporting Students through E-Textbooks and Problem-Based Software
February 5, 2014
A session at the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative Annual Meeting
"Please Don't Make Me Buy a Textbook": Using ExtraOERdinary Materials to Save Money and Increase Access for Students Lisa C. Young, Instructional Design/Ed Tech Faculty, Sc…
- Case Study 21: Shaping the Path to Digital: The Indiana University eTexts Initiative
May 2, 2012
A case study from Game Changers Brad Wheeler and Nik Osborne This chapter is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License Introduction The risi…
- 7 Things You Should Know About the Evolution of the Textbook
April 3, 2012
Tablet devices and the publishing they enable are leading us to reconsider what constitutes a textbook , and they certainly change the landscape of what it has traditionally meant to write an…