Document Type

Article

Publication Date

Winter 2015

Publication Title

Library Hi Tech

Volume

33

Issue

1

First Page

65

Last Page

82

DOI

10.1108/LHT-11-2014-0107

Keywords

Electronic textbooks, eTextbooks, technology acceptance model, Electronic resources, Universities, Students, Technology adoption

Abstract

Purpose: The current study seeks contribute to our understanding of how students accept and use e-textbooks in higher education by assessing their experiences with e-textbooks from Flat World Knowledge and Nelson Education during a two year campus pilot.

Design/methodology/approach: Students enrolled in one of 11 classes involved in the library’s e-textbook pilot were recruited to complete an online survey including questions related to the perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use of electronic textbooks, as well as their general habits with the textbook. This study uses the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) as a framework for analysis.

Findings: Students experienced a drop in enthusiasm for e-textbooks from the beginning to the end of the pilot. While research suggests that students prefer for print over electronic in some contexts, students rarely acted on that preference by seeking out available alternative print options. Student experience with the open/affordable textbook (FWK) was very comparable to that of the high cost commercial text (Nelson).

Originality/value: While previous research suggests that students have a general preference for textbooks in print rather than electronic, our study suggests that preference may not dictate the likelihood that students will use print options. Students appear to be willing and able to easily make use of the content and functions in their e-textbooks. Despite overall positive reviews for the e-textbooks, students experienced a drop in enthusiasm for e-textbooks from the beginning to the end of the pilot.

Comments

This article is (c) Emerald Group Publishing and permission has been granted for this version to appear here

(http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/LHT-11-2014-0107).

Emerald does not grant permission for this article to be further copied/distributed or hosted elsewhere without the express permission from Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

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