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eTextbook access, usage, and beliefs: implications for adoption in higher education

Aimee deNoyelles (Center for Distributed Learning, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida, USA)
Ryan Seilhamer (Center for Distributed Learning, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida, USA)

Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education

ISSN: 2050-7003

Article publication date: 23 September 2013

658

Abstract

Purpose

Dynamic features of eTextbooks, such as taking interactive quizzes and sharing notes can make the practice of reading a textbook more supportive and engaging than before. While promising, challenges exist regarding the integration of eTextbooks in higher education, such as cost, usability, and lack of instructor development. There is a need for a more informed understanding of how instructors and learners are integrating eTextbooks to revolutionize learning spaces, in order to formulate next steps of action on a university level. While studies exist regarding universities with eTextbook initiatives, there is little empirical data concerning universities that offer eTextbooks without a focussed initiative. This paper aims to fill this gap.

Design/methodology/approach

In this paper, the results of a university-wide student survey are shared, which provide insight into factors such as the selection and use of eTextbooks, access, and beliefs regarding eTextbook use and learning.

Findings

Generally, we found that in a university setting without an eTextbook initiative, eTextbook use is relatively low and their features are not being effectively utilized by students or instructors. In any university that offers eTextbooks, instructor development is critical.

Originality/value

Findings from this survey guide the instructional design of instructor development. The findings also identify pertinent issues that any university is likely to face when considering an eTextbook initiative, such as raising student awareness, working with publishers, and providing effective technical and pedagogical support.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

We acknowledge Dr Baiyun Chen, who assisted with the design, development, implementation, and data analysis of the eTextbook survey at UCF.

Citation

deNoyelles, A. and Seilhamer, R. (2013), "eTextbook access, usage, and beliefs: implications for adoption in higher education", Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education, Vol. 5 No. 2, pp. 189-201. https://doi.org/10.1108/JARHE-12-2012-0065

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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