Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Indiana U Signs Pearson into eTexts Program


Indiana University has signed a deal with Pearson as part of the institution's sizable eTexts@IU initiative. Pearson is one of just a few major publishers that have been holdouts on the digital textbook project, which allows faculty to choose those over printed textbooks in order to obtain a reduced price on the curriculum for students. [snip]

The eTexts pilot began in 2009 and spread to all eight Indiana U campuses in 2011. Students and faculty access the materials through Courseload, an online platform that allows students to read, annotate, and communicate with others on computers, tablets, and smartphones. [snip].


Calling the deal "fantastic," Nik Osborne, leader of the Indiana University (IU) eTexts initiative and chief of staff for the Office of the Vice President for IT, said the earliest that Pearson digital materials would show up in classrooms as part of the new agreement would be fall 2012, though a more certain timeline is spring 2013. [snip].

Osborne said the university is also negotiating with Pearson on the use of its supplemental material--digital content, such as MyMathLab, to make that available as part of the OnCourse platform. [snip].

Osborne noted that Pearson is one of the top three textbook publishers providing course materials to faculty and the largest in terms of the number of titles used at Indiana U. The top three publishers, he said, account for about 60 percent of materials in use; the top five publishers supply about 72 percent. [snip].

So adding Pearson to the eTexts portfolio, which also includes McGraw Hill, Macmillan, Flat World Knowledge, Harvard Business Publishing, Indiana University Press, W.W. Norton, and Wiley, is "significant," he said. [snip].


Although the deal with Pearson won't be automatically integrated into the work Indiana U is doing with five other institutions through Internet2's NET+ service pilot, Osborne believes it does signal more such arrangements in the near future. "We think this is a positive step. We can't speak for Pearson, but I would hope that this is a good start for seeing more of these types of models pop out there at other institutions. [snip].

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