CourseSmart On-Line eTextBooks

CourseSmart logoCourseSmart is a higher education content delivery system that delivers e-textbooks to over 2.5 million students and faculty members. Sean Devine, CEO of CourseSmart talks to Jeffrey and Andy about the system.

CourseSmart brings together content producers and content consumers, typically publishers, lecturers and students in over 7,000 universities and colleges. The organisation is owned by a group of publishers but it distributes content from a wider range of content producers. Over 30,000 original textbooks and other products are on-line at their website and the publications can be integrated into the college’s electronic learning environment.

As with most things digital it’s not possible to buy or sell e-textbooks secondhand and the book is really just rented. The CourseSmart books are typically 60% cheaper than a new paper book and naturally they’re always in stock. For today’s mobile student the books are delivered through multiple devices – web browser, web app, iPad, iPhone and Android apps.

Interview by Jeffrey Powers of Geekazine and Andy Smith of Geocaching World.

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CourseSmart Online Text Books

Andy McCaskey talks to Heather Shelstad, Director of Marketing for CourseSmart. Anyone in education will know that textbooks are expensive and CourseSmart offers a cheaper and more convenient alternative.  CourseSmart is the world’s largest provider of on-line textbooks with around 90% of the current curriculum available at about 60% of the cost. CourseSmart has relationships with many of the major publishers, so new textbooks are available on-line simultaneously with the paper editions.

Heather shows off the iPad’s virtual bookshelf client that takes advantage of the iPad’s touch screen to provide real-world functionality such as sticky notes and annotations. The on-line world can provide a richer experience than a traditional book, with links to other resources across the Internet but a new feature coming soon will be the ability to download and store chapters or whole books for reference off-line.

Any web browser can be used to read etexts at CourseSmart but there are specific clients for iPads, iPhones and Android devices.

Interview by Andy McCaskey of SDR News.

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