Embedded E-books and E-Readers in Distance Learning
Embedded E-books and E-Readers inDistance LearningTerese BirdLearning Technologist and SCORE Research FellowBeyond Distance Research Alliance, University of LeicesterMobiLearnAsia 2012 24-26 October, Sentosa, Singaporewww.le.ac.uk
What will we talk about?• Learning advantages of e- readers in DUCKLING project• Criminology iPad and app – one-iPad-per-student• Caveats of e-readers• How to do it• Future-gazing
DUCKLING: Delivering University Curriculum:Knowledge, Learning and INnovation Gains• 3 distance programmes in 2 disciplines: – One MA in Applied Linguistics and TESOL, Education – Two MSc in Occupational Psychology, Psychology• 4 technologies: Podcasting Wimba Voice Board Sony E-book readers Second Lifehttp://www.le.ac.uk/duckling
Purposes of using e-book readers• Increase curriculum flexibility• Accommodate demands of mobile learners• Maximise limited study time• Increase access to essential readings• Cost-saving Photo by Irish Typepad on Flickr
The pilot and research28 Sony PRS-505 e-book readers, pre-loaded with course materials andpodcasts, given to 17 TESOL and 11 OP students Instruments TESOL OP TotalBlackboard Survey 17 11 28Cognitive mapping 9 3 12Interviews Causal map
Course material conversion epubbud.com Calibre.com
Flexibility and mobilitySmall, compact size Continue reading, Bookmark Portability Capacity Photo by Kzeng on Flickr Access from a single Readability device without internet Easy on the eyes Long battery life Photo by Yummy Pancake on Flickr
Maximise study time I am using the e-reader to access the unit materials everyday I find that the reader has become an integral part of my day in particular situations Photo by Ed Yourdon on Flickr I do a lot of readings during transit and waiting periods from my e- book readerIve also gotten into the habit of carryingmy reader with me everywhere, and ifIm in a situation where Im waiting for20 minutes I will automatically openthe reader. Photo by Ton Zijlstra on Flickr
Cost-saving for students• Causal map: – Saving costs in printing
Change in study strategiesChanging strategy The e-book reader changed my way to keep notes and made my study more effective. Before, I used my laptop to write a lot ofin keeping notes notes because I feel I will forget the whole thing if I don’t take them down. But taking notes is time-consuming and not that effective because I never really use the notes. With the e-book reader … I can remember where the material was and go back to the module on the e-reader and look through it. As a result of that, I didn’t take a lot of notes and I don’t think that it [not taking notes] makes a difference to my study.Changing strategy The e-book reader has changed my approach to how I do assignments to some extent. Previously, I started my assignmentsfor reading and after I’ve done all the readings from print. I now start from theapproaches to assignment and then read the material. I’m being more selective now in what I’m reading, and it’s saving me time in a way.assignments Before I just tried to read everything, I worked a lot harder before but I didn’t really get the grades.
Co-existence with other devices, personalpreferencesI use my laptop and books for conducting My reading habits areresearch because cross-referencing is highly situationalspeedy and intuitive.I still print out materials when I want tomake notes.I don’t use my e-book reader on publictransport or when travelling becausethose environments are too noisy to read.I prefer to use my e-book reader at Photo by Games Accessories on Flickrhome when I have a quiet time.I use my iPhone if I want a quick checkof the materials.
Conclusions and further research• Support for mobile learners• Easier access, better learning?• Additional functions, better learning?• Greener? Photo by Katsuyuki Namba on Flickr
Student Evaluation Summaries• “iPad is built for this type of distance learning study”• Very positive for convenience, immersive multimedia, new ways of working, paperless, no- internet-required• 8 out of 13 respondents reported using the iPad more than the LMS• Wi-fi a problem in some regions (Africa); will use 3G iPads next cohort• Amazon books cannot be purchased in some countries
Two new distance programs• Another one-iPad-per-student but completely DIY using iBooks Author• Attempted one-Kindle-Touch-per-student did not happen
How to make ebooks• Epub: Word -> html -> Calibre -> epub• Epubbud.com• Epub is good for all e-readers except Kindle• Kindle Mobi: Word -> html -> Calibre -> mobi• IF iPad, then ibooks using iBooks Author, or stick with pdf• IF you need for every single kind of device: use iBooks Author for ibooks and pdf, and Pages for epub. But you must cut and paste afresh into Pages. If you must use Windows, use InDesign.
The Future is Apple … for now … sort of• Worldwide customer service• Infrastructure• Apple is making it easy• IF you have confidence in another tablet hardware, just post your epub and pdf docs on a website, students will use tablet to connect to website, and you have it sorted. Photo by cattias.photos on Flickr
With thanks for prior work to…• Ming Nie• Gabi Witthaus• Kelly Barkland• Alejandro Armellini
MSc in Learning Innovation http://go.le.ac.uk/mscli