Monday, March 4, 2013

Digital Textbooks: Publishers and the Unrealized Promise

Students, instructors and institutions aren’t afraid of digital. Publishers are.

Michael Boezi / Vice President of Content and Community at Flat World Knowledge

Is it any wonder that digital textbooks haven’t been widely embraced yet? Most digital textbooks are just overpriced, static versions of their printed counterparts.

That hasn’t stopped the hype about digital textbooks. On one hand, it’s the promise of a new learning experience, with spinning molecules and interactive modules. On the other, it’s the long-awaited solution to the industry’s painful pricing practices. Maybe even both, if we dare to dream it.

The technology and platforms are available today. So, is it that students prefer printed textbooks? Some do, sure. But those numbers are declining year after year.

My contention is that students have yet to be offered a good product for a good value. A printed book rendered on a computer screen is not what we imagine the Digital Promise to be. The opportunity exists to completely rethink the product.


Source and Full Text Available At


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