Category Archives: Textbooks

Say goodbye to free textbooks, Flat World Knowledge transitions from free to fair pricing

I’m really disappointed to hear news from Flat World Knowledge that they will no longer be able to offer a free version of their textbooks. According to an email message sent to faculty, “As the transition to digital has changed student buying trends, one thing has become clear: the free format has become a barrier to our long-term growth and ability to offer a fair and affordable model that works for all our customers, from individual students and instructors to our institutional partners. A change is necessary.”

The full story is posted on the Flat World Knowledge site:  http://www.flatworldknowledge.com/free2fair

Comments and questions?  Also from the website:  ” The decision to no longer offer free access did not come lightly. Some of you will be disappointed, and we understand. If you have questions, please contact us via email at: free2fair@flatworldknowledge.com or on Twitter: @flat_world and include #free2fair. We are ready to listen and respond.”

Library Journal survey on etextbook collections in academic libraries

Academic Librarians – if you have a few minutes, please consider taking this survey about etextbook collections.  Some of the results will be shared at the LJ/SLJ eBook Summit on October 17th.

Library Journal is interested in learning more about etextbook collections in academic libraries. Your participation in this study will help identify the scope of etextbooks on college campuses–how popular they are and who is selecting them.

Please click on the link below to take a brief survey. We want to hear from you even if your library does not currently have an etextbook collection. All participants will be entered into a drawing to win a $100 American Express gift card.

Academic etextbook survey

Results from this survey will be revealed in an upcoming issue of Library Journal. Thank you for supporting LJ‘s research efforts!

Sincerely,

Laura Girmscheid
LJ Research Manager
lgirmscheid@mediasourceinc.com

Gale releases new Classroom in Context resources to supplement textbooks

Farmington Hills, Mich., May 31, 2012 — Gale, part of Cengage Learning and a leading publisher of research and reference resources for libraries, schools and businesses, today announced Classroom in Context (CLiC), a curriculum-based family of resources designed to supplement textbooks and enhance learning with authoritative, media-rich content from Gale’s award-winning In Context product suite. Continue reading

U of Minnesota launches catalog of open source books, will pay faculty to review

A very interesting development at the University of Minnesota was discussed in an article found at Inside Higher Ed.  Here’s a clip from the article:  Minnesota launched an online catalog of open-source books last month and will pay its professors $500 each time they post an evaluation of one of those books. (Faculty members elsewhere are welcome to post their own reviews, but they won’t be compensated.) Minnesota professors who have already adopted open-source texts will also receive $500, with all of the money coming from donor funds.

Articles of Interest

E-Books Drive Revenue Growth Across Book Trade in January 2012 – Digital Book World

JK Rowling’s Pottermore Breaks eBook Lockdown, Might Change eBooks Forever – Huffington Post

LG Begins Mass Production of first flexible , plastic eInk displays – Extreme Tech

An Academic Spring – American Libraries

A Look at Students using eTextbooks (Infographic) – eBOOKNEWSER

Bringing up a Young Reader on E-Books – New York Times

Will Hatchette Be The First Big-6 Publisher toDrop DRM on E-books? – paidcontent.org

Going Digital Does Not Lower Textbook Prices – Inside Higher Education

Ingram launches Android App for VitalSource e-textbook platform

From an Ingram Press Release:  As students look for more ways to interact with digital textbooks, they are increasingly turning to smartphones and tablets powered by the Android® operating system. To meet this demand, VitalSource®, the most-used e-textbook platform in the industry today announced the expansion of its mobile footprint with the addition of an e-textbook app for Android.

“We are significantly expanding our mobile capabilities with our new Android app,” said Kent Freeman, Chief Operating Officer, Vital Source Technologies Inc. “As a result, more content from the leaders in education publishing will reach more readers worldwide. Every student has a device and/or operating system preference, and we know that Android smart phones and tablets are becoming an important option.” Continue reading

Ohio high school issues iPads for 2012-13 students

Mother of Mercy High School in Cincinnati, Ohio recently announced that every student in Mercy’s Class of 2016 (entering this fall) will be issued their very own iPad as part of the school’s techKNOWLEDGEy program.  I am particularly excited to report this news as I am a graduate of Mother of Mercy High School.

The school has done a great deal of research and preparation for the iPad launch.  Teachers were issued iPads at the start of this school year, they have run pilot programs with teachers and students, and made use of an iPad cart (30 devices for classroom use).  According to their website:

In preparation for our iPad-enhanced techknowledgey program, Mercy has already taken several key steps in preparing for a solid launch in the fall of 2012: Continue reading

Ingram’s Vital Source e-textbook platform available through Blackboard Learn

From a Feb. 14th press release:  Ingram’s Vital Source is now providing access to its leading e-textbook platform through Blackboard Learn™, one of the most used learning management systems. The Blackboard Building Block™ for VitalSource gives institutions a comprehensive tool to implement digital textbooks for students in mobile, online and offline environments.

“We are pleased the VitalSource platform will be available to all Blackboard Learn users worldwide, providing anytime, anywhere access to the content that educators and students use most,” said Kent Freeman, Chief Content Officer, Vital Source Technologies, Inc. “The integration of Ingram’s VitalSource platform into one of the most-used learning management systems will improve the experiences of millions of students worldwide.” Continue reading

Articles of Interest

Why Might A Publisher Pull Its E-Books From Libraries? by Laura Hazard Owen « INFOdocket
Which E-Books Are Most Borrowed From Libraries, And Why? | paidContent
So you want to start a Kindle lending program | code4lib
How to add public domain books to the Kindle, by Piotr Kowalczyk | TeleRead: News and views on e-books, libraries, publishing and related topics
Kobo has 10x increase in readers over holidays; top ebooks by country | TeleRead: News and views on e-books, libraries, publishing and related topics
Full Text Article: The Evolution of E-books and Interlibrary Loan in Academic Libraries « INFOdocket
Seven Advantages Barnes & Noble Has in the Bookseller Wars | Digital Book World
Barnes & Noble May Spin Off Nook Business
Turn WebPages into Kindle, Epub eBooks with dotEpub – eBookNewser
Baen Webscriptions is now BaenEbooks.com | TeleRead: News and views on e-books, libraries, publishing and related topics
The Association of American Publishers – Publishers Applaud “Research Works Act,”Bipartisan Legislation To End Government Mandates on Private-Sector Scholarly Publishing
My Argument for Public Access to Research Reports « The Scholarly Kitchen
House takes Senate’s bad Internet censorship bill, tries making it worse
More Than a Million eReaders Were Given Away in the UK This Christmas Season – eBookNewser
E-Textbooks Saved Many Students Only $1 – Wired Campus – The Chronicle of Higher Education
If Libraries Didn’t Exist, Would Publishers Be Trying To Kill Book Lending? | Techdirt