Pages Navigation Menu

eBooks for iPad: Faculty Resources

Posted on Apr 16, 2014

Those of us in the library monitoring ebooks closely wanted to share some details as many of you begin making textbook decisions for the fall. By now the majority of students on the ACU campus have access to an iPad, presenting ACU faculty with a unique opportunity to offer cost-savings on textbook purchases in 2014-15. Here are some of the providers you might consider.

 

iBooks – The standard ebook reader for iOS is Apple’s iBooks app (free). Most trade titles you teach are available on the iBookstore as well as a number of interactive textbooks from some of their publishing partners that include media. In addition to highlighting/annotation, the iBooks app allows students to turn their notes into notecards for later review.

You can also open and store PDF and ePub files in iBooks, whether you digitize an article or share a digital copy of your syllabus. The iBooks Author application for Mac also allows teachers to produce custom content with interactive maps and media.

•  Search Textbooks in iBooks

•  iBooks Textbooks

.

Kindle – Amazon has Kindle reader apps for the iPad and iPhone as well as most mobile and desktop platforms. They offer Kindle versions for many trade titles you already teach on amazon.com that now include Xray which they describe as a “smart glossary” pointing to related content. Students buy the Kindle book and it syncs directly to the Kindle app for iPad (free), and they’re saving money.

Recently Amazon has also worked with textbook companies to offer rental options for Kindle where students are allowed to rent some textbook titles. The main point is that students don’t need to own a Kindle device to read Kindle books on their iPad.

•  Search Kindle Textbooks

•  Amazon Student (50% off Prime)

 .

CourseSmart – Started as a collaboration among textbook companies, CourseSmart claims to offer 90% of standards in Higher Ed. Students rent a copy of their textbook for the semester instead of owning the book. CourseSmart for iPad (free) is also one of several readers they offer for mobile and desktop platforms.

•  Search CourseSmart

•  Request an Examination Copy

 .

Inkling – This is another interactive textbook platform, so many of Inkling’s titles will incorporate media and interactivity as well as self assessments. They offer Inkling for iPad (free) as well as for Android. Students can buy only the chapters from a textbook the teacher assigns which can also lower prices.

•  Search Inkling

•  Request an Examination Copy

.

GooglePlay Books – Another company offering e-textbooks from major publishers is Google through its GooglePlay store. Some titles are also available to rent and they offer GooglePlay Books for iPad (free) as well as for Android and other readers with the standard features.

For faculty interested in historical manuscripts, the Google Books project also scanned millions of volumes from the world’s great research libraries, and since most are out of copyright students can read original first editions for free.

•  Search GooglePlay Textbooks

•  Google Books catalog

.

OpenLibrary – Finally, OpenLibrary is another great resource for putting students in touch with free content, especially primary documents and first editions available in PDF and ePub. Once students go to a book record on OpenLibrary, they can download and open the file in the iBooks app.

•  Search OpenLibrary

 .

Kno – One other player in the interactive textbook market is Kno. They were recently acquired by Intel and have some unique features, including student dashboards and assessments. They offer Kno for iPad (free) as well as for other mobile platforms. Their catalog is growing so may be worth a look.

•  Search Kno

 

.

eBook Updates

Cover250This will be the first year all freshman Bible students will use Introducing the New Testament from Baker Academic. ACU faculty led by Curt Niccum, Trevor Thompson, and Rodney Ashlock have worked closely with Baker to develop content for the new edition filmed in the Learning Studio.

All Cornerstone freshmen will again be using a revised edition of the custom Cornerstone iBook written by ACU faculty and led by Cliff Barbarick and produced in the Learning Studio.

.

 

For More Information

Does your department teach a course taken by hundreds of students? We’re happy to work with your faculty to weigh the value of ebook options currently available or custom textbook projects you might contribute to in the future.

Read More

VIDEO: Pursuit Spotlight, Dr. Jennifer Shewmaker

Posted on Mar 1, 2014

A few weeks ago we enjoyed sitting down with Dr. Jennifer Shewmaker, associate professor of Psychology and director of faculty enrichment in the Adams Center to talk about her work with undergraduate research.

Her study investigates gendered marketing of Lego blocks and possible implications for attitudes toward STEM in young girls. Dr. Shewmaker reflects on working with Caitlyn Spain, a marketing major, on a human subjects study in the Adams Center’s new Learning Research Lab.

.
Pursuit is a quality enhancement program at ACU focused on developing energy around undergraduate research and creative expression. Dr. Shewmaker’s was just one of a dozen projects over the last two years that provided mentoring and research experience in departments across campus.

For more information or to apply to work on a future project, visit the Pursuit site.

Read More

Old Testament film projects

Posted on Feb 12, 2014

Over the last two years, students in Dr. Mark Hamilton’s honors sections of BIBL 211: Message of the Old Testament have produced short films in teams. Groups of four develop short 4-5 minute video projects that reflect on themes such as lament, sacrifice, atonement, among others.

Once groups have selected biblical texts they consider how they respond “to the historical background, literary shaping, theological purpose, and interpretive history (i.e., the understanding of the text on the part of later readers) of the given text.”

Here are a few examples of their work.

.

Fall 2013

.

Fall 2012

.

Other Requirements

Here are a few other elements of the assignment:

1. The video should not use footage created by other people. (So, no Lego Bible stories or similar things.)

2. The video should include appropriate voice work by all the team members and should show some measure of creativity.

3. The team should produce a script for the video and submit it along with the video.

4. The video should be well-informed by deep reflection on the biblical texts and themes on which students have been working.

Read More

Lynda for the holidays

Posted on Dec 11, 2013

In our first year of Lynda.com, we’ve had 731 users view 4,310 different videos. Teachers have assigned Lynda content to support specific assignments or as a textbook replacement in some subject areas.

To get a sense of the variety of potential uses of Lynda content, just look at the list of our 12 most viewed courses in 2013.

1. Excel Essential Training

2. Premiere Pro Essential Training

3. C# Essential Training

4. QuickBooks Pro Essential Training

5. After Effects Essential Training

6. XML Training

7. Illustrator Essential Training

8. Time Management Fundamentals

9. Photoshop Essential Training

10. Sales Skills Fundamentals

11. Ruby Essential Training

12. Maya Essentials

 

If you’re looking to learn a new skill or piece of software over the holidays, don’t miss our 12 Days of Lynda playlist.

And if you’re teaching with Lynda.com next spring, you can create your own playlists to share with students as well. Here is a quick tutorial for how to create them.

lynda

Read More

12 Days of Lynda

Posted on Dec 5, 2013

This week we’re celebrating 12 Days of Lynda.com, giving prizes to some of the top lynda.com users from the ACU campus over the past year. You can also enter to win some stocking stuffers including 8gb key drives.

Over the holiday break if you’re looking to learn a new skill and try out some new software, check out this playlist featuring 12 of our favorite new Lynda courses.

And if you’re teaching with Lynda.com next spring, you can create your own playlists to share with students as well. Here is a quick tutorial for how to create them.

 

lynda

Read More