Tuesday, June 28, 2011

interactive textbook - examples and direction

‘Interactive textbook’ are not a new concept, as this example shows.  Commercial options include dynamic books, an online ‘repository’ accessed via institutional LMS, Blio as an interactive reader and for the ipad, there is Inkling. PC world reports on several other ipad initiatives including scroll motion and CourseSmart.  However, these are still mainly reconfigured textbooks with the usual text book type layout and embedded links to videos etc.

What is the future for textbooks? 21st textbooks could also be imminently “personalised and mashable” something that will take some working on.  Neverending books is one approach, bringing in social media, to working through a text book and access to a constantly up to date textbook. Another is Symtext, allowing multiple ways to access a book either as text, podcast or video. Bill Gates reminds us about the need to include 'self - assessment' opportunities/ software in next generation textbooks.
How can interactive textbooks on a tablet enhance students learning? From the above, we can distil a few pointers:
  • It HAS to be interactive PLUS be intuitive to navigate through.
  • Should provide opportunity for students to do some form of self assessment.
  • Students should also have the option of creating their own content – either text, graphic (sketch, mindmap, photos, annotated photos), audio or video (again with annotation options).

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