Welcome to The CITE -- a blog on Course materials, Innovation, and Technology in Education, created by Mark Nelson and now part of the Publications Department of the National Association of College Stores. CITE is a pun with multiple meanings - referring to cite as in citation, something people reference; site as in location, website, or place people go to; and sight as in foresight or looking ahead to what is coming. Comments, discussion, feedback and ideas are welcome.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Digital Reading Gains a Bit with Students

College students still lean toward print formats for their course materials, but they’re using more digital materials these days.

The newly released survey analysis from NACS OnCampus Research, Student Watch: Attitudes and Behaviors toward Course Materials: 2015-2016 Report, showed the largest block of students still prefer to study from traditional print books. However, there was a slight uptick in students—26% in the last academic year, as opposed to 24% the previous year—who would rather use a print/digital bundle. Bundles usually include a print textbook plus online access to a digital version of the book in addition to other materials and study aids.

About 17% of students say they could go either way when it comes to print or digital, depending on the nature of the particular course. Approximately three-quarters of survey respondents had experienced digital course materials for at least one class, sometimes because the instructor required its use to fulfill online assignments.

When students have a choice between digital materials or print, paper wins out as being easier for studying, including being able to flip back and forth as needed and causing less eye strain than a computer screen. The main advantage of digital is convenience—not having to haul a heavy book around campus—but 45% of students said they purchased digital because it was cheaper.

1 comment:

Ruth Kinloch said...

Yeah, the popularity of digital materials growth slowly. Too slowly, the one may say. I remember those days, when e-readers had just been launched and digital materials were not that easily accessible. I thought that soon ebooks would force out traditional textbooks. However, still textbooks are very popular, and I am happy, as I love to flip through a book and to smell it.