The E-Textbook: An idea whose time has not quite arrived

Just posted a short report on the E-Textbook in higher education.

I look at a number of studies of recent e-textbook implementation, and conclude that adoption is a few years out –but that changes in price, functionality or student priorities could accelerate things considerably.

Here’s a sample: “The widespread availability of textbooks in convenient e-formats, the inclusion of interactive and audio/visual contents in these texts, and the sharing of highlights, annotations and responses between readers are all exciting possibilities. However, they remain just that: possibilities. These potential functions would form a major comparative advantage for e-textbooks against their print counterparts, but they are all waiting for popular, technical solutions and practices to make them realities. In fact, there are many reasons to believe that most students will not be working with e-textbooks until 2015 or later.”

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