For decades, textbooks that are the foundation of instruction in most schools and colleges have remained unchanged. These textbooks have been historically expensive, outdated, and inconvenient to lug around due to their weight. The costs of publishing and printing a new revision every year also drove costs up, making them unaffordable to many students.
Why switch to interactive textbooks?
According to Fleming and Mills learning styles can be classified in Visual, Auditory, Reading and Writing and Kinesthetic, commonly known as the VARK modalities. Data suggests that the modern classroom has to accommodate all kinds of learners to be truly effective and inclusive in their teaching methodology. The curriculum and teaching methods of the past were designed to serve the Read/Write learners well tending to largely ignore Visual, Aural and Kinesthetic learners.
The fundamental flaw of this approach is that it panders to a minuscule segment of learners leaving the large majority ill-equipped to learn. Findings tell us that the vast majority of us close to 65% of the general population are visual learners. It has been also found that the use of Visual Aids in the classroom improves learning by up to 400%. However, even after these findings have been strongly established, we are yet to make any fundamental changes in the education system.
The very foundation of a stronger and more accommodative education system can be laid down by introducing textbooks and learning material that accommodates all the VARK modalities. This means that textbooks have to be more visual, use more images, more video and more audio to supplement a text. Gamification of certain core concepts using simple HTML or Flash games will also help improve conceptual understanding and information retention for learners.
We’re helping publishers build rich, contextualized ebooks cost effectively!
We believe that the textbook, as we know it, is due for an upgrade. Although ebooks are nothing new to the market, we feel that the publishing industry is on the cusp of the next wave of ‘digitization’. Traditional ebooks are a far rung away from the technological possibilities that are already commonplace in digital content. Publishers will eventually need to evolve to meet the challenge of free digital content by offering more to learners.
The current breed of E-books have evolved to include functionalities such as search, hyperlinking, indexing, bookmarking and more. However, they are yet to exploit the power of visuals, text, audio, and video to enrich content. This is because of the widespread perception that creating such ‘digital content’ for books is a costly affair.
At Renyoo, we’ve developed a revolutionary image tagging software that helps publishers develop content for textbooks or ebooks cheaply. The ‘hotspots’ technology we’ve developed to help provide context for images is perfect for educational modules, diagrams, infographics that otherwise may be expensive to develop individually.
It allows publishers or even hobbyists to leverage on the treasure trove of free images (especially for educational content) available on the web and customize them without altering them significantly or violating copyright laws. Publishers can provide direct hyperlinks to source websites to ensure that credit is provided to original authors and help learners explore multiple perspectives and authorities on a subject in an exploratory fashion.
It also allows publishers to intersperse text content with Audio notes, Youtube videos, Games and more. Although this may seem very work intensive, it can help keep textbooks relevant and increase the longevity and relevance of these textbooks. It also gives publishers the options to monetize in different ways, by giving some content away for free and asking students to pay for premium content such as detailed explainer videos, tutorials and more. This makes books accessible to all students, giving them the option to spend as much or as little as they like on bonus content.
To know more about how we’re changing educational content for good – Schedule a quick demo.