Designing and evaluating eBook resources


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The slides from my presentation at MELSIG (Media Enhanced Learning Special Information Group) event: Smart devices for learning #2. The presentation describes a Higher Education Academy (HEA) funded project designing and evaluating eBook resources. I discuss what actually is an eBook? Look at my evaluation of various authoring tools. It also describes case studies from the projects including eBook in lab work and fieldwork, and students a creators of eBooks.

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Designing and evaluating eBook resources

  1. 1. School of something FACULTY OF OTHER Designing and evaluating eBook resources Hayley Atkinson and Neil Morris
  2. 2. Designing and evaluating interactive multimedia eBook resources in a variety of academic settings: • The project, • eBooks, • The tools, • The case studies, • The impact so far. . Introduction
  3. 3. Designing and evaluating interactive multimedia eBook resources in a variety of academic settings: • HEA collaborative grant funded project, • Evaluate tools to use, • Design eBooks based on pre-existing materials, • Design a research methodology to investigate student use of the eBooks. . The background
  4. 4. “publishers that literally provide a PDF and call it an eBook .. shame on you…in order for digital textbooks to really surpass the paper editions they need to offer more …I mean embrace the technology and have embedded video, links, question & answers” (David Hopkins. 2013. Textbooks: paper or digital) What is an eBook?
  5. 5. Evaluating authoring tools
  6. 6. Case study one: eBooks and iPads in the lab Cutaneous testing Immunofluorescence Electrophysiology
  7. 7. Student perceptions: eBooks Aesthetic appeal: “I think the eBook is more inviting to use than the hand-outs, like before the lab I wanted to go over some of the material and I went straight to the iPad because the eBook looks nicer and it explains it well” Skills training: “I've used the eBooks just in practical [classes] with the videos, sometimes its better to have a pictorial display instead of just a written protocol to understand how to do things particularly in dissections.”
  8. 8. iPads to support lab based learning iPad apps app tutorials
  9. 9. Access to learning resources: “Well I’ve got the access to internet in lectures. I think the main thing I’ve used it for is cos it’s portable and easy to carry around and stuff, so I’ve always got access to you know the internet and VLE wherever I am, I don’t have to get a computer. Accessibility is probably the main thing it’s changed.” Organisation and time management: “I feel more organised, like before I was always the person asking other people when assignments were due, but it took two minutes to set up and I’ve found it really useful” Student perceptions: study habits
  10. 10. Case study two: eBooks as an assessment tool
  11. 11. Learning „Intervention‟ • Additional channel • Launch pad of excellence Good Performers • Mixed results, but overall: • Enhancing engagement „OK‟ Performers • „Test‟ group • Stable performance Non Participants
  12. 12. Student Feedback About transferring an essay into Presentation “You really think about the flow and how you present your essay, and a lot of that is not the same as what you had in mind when you just wrote it.” “I think as far as you are presenting the essay you are really aware of every step of your arguments.” Enhancing engagement “I thought quality was important for the essay, so, having the iBook, I could actually put pictures and actually show that and I rather liked the idea.”
  13. 13. Student Feedback About language learning “I was aware while writing my essay that I would be able to do a glossary type tool, and so I made sure that I highlighted key words and key names and that type of thing and that I would have a ready definition next to it. Just to make it easier.” “You went through first and translated it for yourself, then when I was getting ready to put it into the iBook I went through and looked at the words again so just like by repeatedly encountering the words really helped in the learning of them. Multiplicator effects “Yeah, I thought it was really good to get each others essays, cos like, every other module you ever do everyone goes away an does a load of work on something and you never have any idea what it is and like going around everyone‟s you kinda learn like, even if it‟s just a snippet of what they did you pick up loads of little interesting facts, so it was really interesting hearing everyone‟s essays back.”
  14. 14. Implications Students that took part in the trial reflected that they: • thought more carefully about their assignment choice, • gave more consideration to their audience, • put more thought into a constructive argument, • considered the use of Japanese vocabulary more carefully, • consider the visual aesthetic more carefully, • learnt from sharing each other‟s work. Next steps?
  15. 15. What‟s happening next? eBooks to support fieldwork
  16. 16. School of something FACULTY OF OTHER ULBERG FACULTY OF BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES Hayley Atkinson @ebookslearning University of Leeds Bioscience Education Research Group @UL_BERG