With technology constantly evolving, The Florida A&M University bookstore now offers electronic books.
Manager for Corporate Communications at Barnes & Noble Karen Gonsor DiScala, said that earlier eTextbooks were not very popular as they came with limitations. They often could not present images on screen and they were not very engaging. Students could only read them and not interact with the content like they would with a printed book.
eTextbooks were essentially just text on a screen, DiScala said.
Today DiScala is seeing a significant growth in students interested in eTextbooks.
“One of the main reasons students are becoming interested in eTextbooks is because the new generation of eTextbook readers is bringing this new format to life,” DiScala.
CourseSmart, a provider for FAMU’s eTextbooks, said that students and faculty are choosing their books over traditional ones because of savings, convenience and efficiency.
“Students who purchase eTextbooks can save an average of 60 percent off print textbook costs and eliminate the mystery of buyback at the end of the semester while also providing them instant access to course materials when other retail options may be closed, out of stock or need a few days to ship a book,” said Assistant Account Executive for CourseSmart.Nicole Bassaleh,
Manndola Dorsilon, 19, a sophomore vocal performance student from Orlando agrees that the electronic books are more convenient.
“I feel positive about it because everything is electronic anyways and I think it will be easier to access,” Dorsilon said. “I don’t have to come here to order my books, I can just go online.”
While some people enjoy this development, others still enjoy flipping through the physical pages of a book. Take Dezmond Moore, 21, a senior engineer student from St.Louis, Mo., for example. Moore said that print books are easier to navigate.
“I don’t want to have to feel obligated to carry around my computer,” Moore said. “If I had an electronic book, I would have to do that. Plus, if I needed to print something from the electronic book, than it would be like having a paperback book. That defeats the purpose.”
Bassaleh said CourseSmart’s eTextbooks offer features and functions that students simply cannot get using traditional print textbooks.
“Aside from access to their eTextbooks, anywhere, at anytime, without lugging around a heavy backpack, students can streamline their studies using the search feature to quickly identify all references to a specific subject throughout an entire text or throughout their entire stack of eTextbooks,” Bassaleh said. “The copy and paste feature also enables students to quickly pull together study guides. Students can take notes, highlight sections of text and print only what they need, saving trees.”