A Textbook Guru Report

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs): Udacity

hen30xjvWelcome back to our series on Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). Today we are taking a look at one of the largest platforms in the field, Udacity. In case you missed it, we’ve already looked at the MOOC phenomenon in general and what to expect when enrolling in an MOOC. We also looked at one of the other big players in the space, edX. (more…)

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs): Class in Session


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Recently I broached the subject of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), which have very recently exploded onto the academic scene. They are an exciting new way of learning; able to reach thousands of students simultaneously while being completely free. It’s an attractive concept, but the question is how this concept performs in the real world. Today we’ll take a look at what it’s like to take an MOOC. (more…)

Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Student Seller, Against Textbook Publishers

In a decision of great consequence to our industry (as well as to all things copyright), the U.S. Supreme Court yesterday ruled 6-3 in favor of allowing resellers who buy copyrighted products abroad to resell them in domestically without permission from copyright owners. (more…)

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs): An Overview

http://www.scmp.com/sites/default/files/styles/980w/public/2012/11/16/ce16a159d9276ca2c12c81a0bfa2a4e3.jpgI have been hopefully following the movement towards more affordable education for a while now, primarily tracking the growth of digital textbooks and their impact on the high prices student’s pay for education. However, if you’ve read my reviews of the major eTextbook platforms, you’ll know that while eBooks are innovating textbooks with interactive rich media and customization, they are still little more than digital versions of paper books. The kind of innovation that is really going to move the needle on education isn’t a repackaging of existing tools, it’s a rethinking of the tools themselves. This is where Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are succeeding, by flipping the academic model on its head. (more…)

Textbook Guru – Recap

Another rush has ended and before we know it the holiday’s will be here. As we end the 3rd quarter I thought I would do another round up of the some of the most-important and most-read Textbook Guru posts. The big update over the past quarter has been the launch of the new blog. Let me know how you like you. www.thetextbookguru.com (more…)

When the Walls Come Tumbling Down: The Fall of Chuck Jones

The stories about Chuck Jones keep getting more bizarre, not to mention frightening and downright sad. In case, you’re not up to speed on this strange saga, let me fill you in. Chuck Jones is the former CEO of South Eastern Book Company (SE Books) and CollegeBookRenter.com. Since roughly the beginning of the year, Jones has been plagued by allegations of deceit and misdirection. About two weeks ago, he stepped down as CEO and the wholesale company South Eastern Book closed its doors. Late last week, the story got more interesting and more complicated. It seems that Mr Jones, in addition to his mishandling the book-company money, had also purchased a printing company and was making illegal copies of top textbooks, swapping them out and renting them under the original ISBNs. What?!?! (more…)

Infographic – Free Textbooks in California

Over the past six months we have followed the new legislation in California for the first national digital textbook library. With the law passing the legislature it is now awaiting the Governor’s signature. To demonstrate the benefit of the law, 20 Million Minds created an infographic to show the benefit. (more…)