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Presentation Details


The Meaning of the Texbook: A Student Perspective

Jeffrey Hoffer.

Considerable attention has been given to the potential for various forms of electronic media as a replacement for or compliment to the traditional paper bound volume, for example the traditional college text book, which has been provided as a singular unit that represents the point of view of its author(s), and is adopted for use (in a variety of ways) by the course instructor, and is eventually used by students as one element of a package of learning materials.

Taking advantage of the flexibility provided by various electronic media, the course text can now be delivered as a collection of units that can be custom-designed by the course instructor to fit his or her pedagogical design. However, we suggest that the technology may have evolved more rapidly than its potential users (e.g., instructors to incorporate the media into the course and their students to utilize the media among the plethora of materials in the learning environment). Since the goal is to create a learning environment whereby students may more readily comprehend, retain, apply and extend knowledge, it would seem reasonable that the student's perspective should be taken into account. However, we have identified only limited attention paid to this by publishers, authors, and faculty. Since the influence of any text on a reader is only realized in interaction with the reader, it would seem reasonable to understand the meaning that students attach to the course text, in particular within the context of their overall course experience. The present study is an initial effort to engage students in a dialog in order to gain insights into how they perceive electronic texts (vis a vis printed texts). In light of the opportunities now available for an instructor to custom-design the text as part of their course delivery, we believe the insights from those who are actually the target audience of the text (at least as seen by the instructor) may prove instructive for the design of new media texts.


Jeffrey Hoffer  (United States)
Professor and Chair
MIS, OM, & Decision Sciences
University of Dayton

Jeffrey Hoffer is author of 16 books and more than 30 journal articles in the areas of systems analysis, database management, and management of technology. He is a founder of the INFORMS College on Information Systems and the Association for Information Systems. He is Associate Director of the Teradata University Network. He holds a PhD from Cornell University and has been on the faculty of Case Western Reserve University and Indiana University before joining the University of Dayton as Chair of the MIS, OM, and Decision Sciences Department.

  • E-book
  • College students
  • Electronic media
  • Perceptions
  • Learning environment

(Virtual Presentation, English)