Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Here is one particular video of a faculty member from Dayton College speaking to his experience working with e-books in the classroom. The professor has three main messages he wanted to convey. First, he says faculty should take ownership of the e-books and provide technical instruction to the students instead to sending them off to the helpdesk. Second, decision to adopt digital course materials should be driven by student learning outcomes. He thinks that if you get more success using digital than you should use it but if you are not seeing improvements than maybe you should rethink digital adoption. Third, students need something more than saving money when it comes to e-books. The students want clear demonstrative academic benefits and some form intellectual payoff that they would not get if digital was not being used.
The take away from this video is that schools should not make any hasty decisions about mandating e-textbooks across campus. Rather the schools should focus on assessing whether e-textbooks provide improved learning outcomes before launching a campus-wide digital textbook policy.
Monday, February 27, 2012
Sunday, February 26, 2012
Saturday, February 25, 2012
Friday, February 24, 2012
Thursday, February 23, 2012
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
1) What do you see as the future of custom course materials?
Tuesday, February 21, 2012
Here is the original introduction:
Those without the experience of working outside the institution can easily overlook the established advantages we can capitalize upon, campus services that can be enhanced, and value-added strengths that can be built upon. The basics include offering convenience and customer service, facilitating communication with faculty and students, collaborating with strategic partners, managing consolidated transactions, and controlling costs.
While offering valued services to faculty, students, administrators, and other course material stakeholders proves competency, capability, and credibility, this is not enough. To ensure a position of strength for the course materials future, collegiate retailers must consider forward thinking strategies and be open to new ways of thinking. The list that follows represents contemporary actions that can be taken to drive the future of course materials.Here is the list:
1. Think & Read Strategically.
2. Pursue Digital Options.
5. Seek Collaborative Opportunities.
6. Consider Alternative Success Measures.
8. Track Market Share Not Just Top Line Revenue.
9. Don't Be Afraid to Act Decisively.
10. BE Your Future.
This is a great list, with even better content to go with it. The full essay should be required reading for most stores. #10 really sums the others up though. There are basic business practices we should be engaged in because they are the right thing to do -- both as mission-driven organizations, and business managers concerned with providing value to our stakeholders -- starting with students and faculty.
Monday, February 20, 2012
1) What do you see as the future of custom course materials?LAD is very optimistic about custom materials for the future. It's a huge benefit for the professors and students, as well as the bookstores. You'll never hear a student complaining that the professor only used 3 chapters out of a 15 chapter book. We're already seeing many new faculty make the switch to custom as the processes to do this have become much easier over the years. The digital migration has begun as well and we're helping many faculty and bookstores make the transition. Don't get left behind and choose partners that are willing to keep the bookstore as the main channel for content.2) What role do you see for stores with custom course materials in the future?LAD has always viewed the bookstore as the key channel to distribute content and we still believe that's true today and in the future. We'd like to see bookstores get much more aggressive on campus in providing information to administrators, IT and faculty about digital content and how the bookstore can facilitate the process. There are many companies like LAD that will partner with bookstores to be the expert on custom and digital on their behalf. You are the "expert" so just let everyone on campus know about it.3) What makes your product or service unique? What products or services do you offer in this space?LAD has always been known for great customer service, high quality printed material and on time delivery, but we want bookstores to know that we can also assist them in delivering content in several different digital formats. We have a very simple solution for delivering course materials online as well as a branded iPad App that allows our bookstore partners to compete with anyone on campus trying to by-pass them. We handle all copyrights and payment of royalties, communicate with your faculty, deliver a branded print, digital or print+digital format and we still offer the industry's only true 100% Return Policy.4) Who should stores contact for more information?We'd love to see you at our booth so stop by 5003 and say hello. We'll show you why over 550 campuses nationwide trust LAD for all their custom needs. Please contact Lance Liggin for more info at: firstname.lastname@example.org or toll free 877-318-8800. Our website is: www.ladcustompub.com
Sunday, February 19, 2012
For those who remember, E-texts and mobile computing topped last year's list.
Saturday, February 18, 2012
Friday, February 17, 2012
Thursday, February 16, 2012
Shapiro from Follet Higher Education Group reported thatsales of e-books are less than 5% of its revenue but this is misleading because it does not account for digital sold in a bundle which makes up 25% of its textbook revenue. Follett also saw growth in interactive digital textbook at around 5% and expects that segment to grow the most in the future. Cafescribe, Follett’s online textbook business estimated to be at $400 million is the 56th largest e-commerce in the U.S.
Wednesday, February 15, 2012
Next in our continuing series on the Grow Custom Initiative, today's highlighted sponsor is McGraw Hill (CAMEX Booth
1333 Burr Ridge Parkway
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Monday, February 13, 2012
1) What do you see as the future of custom course materials?
The future would be for providing students and faculty more choice. Today's students are growing up in middle and high school with access to wide variety of educational resources, beyond off-the-shelf textbooks. They will have different expectations about materials, options, and what kinds of tools best mach course objectives. Custom is a natural fit for these new expectations. For faculty, not being bound by pre-set content, and having the flexibility to choose what best aligns with the course, opens the door for creativity and higher engagement. And, technology and publisher awareness is making the process of starting custom much easier. I see a wider adoption of custom as younger faculty matriculate up through the ranks as well, because younger faculty we speak with relish the opportunity to express their points of view.
2) What role do you see for stores with custom course materials in the future?
Stores can be a facilitator, champion, and proponent of custom. Not only is custom is good for the classroom environment, but it's also a value-added service stores can provide to faculty. "Smart custom", materials that are uniquely designed and 100% relevant for the course, create a stronger, recurring revenue stream for the stores, with a product that is relatively closed-circuit. The challenge, of course, is that it's tough to scale a robust marketing and fulfillment operations with custom being only a part of the bookstore services. The bookstores support the entire university for materials and supplies; while custom is a terrific approach to course materials, it also requires some commitment and time-share. We think that closer working relationships with custom partners can be positive, helping stores scale their services and grow custom on their campus.
3) What makes your product or service unique? What products or services do you offer in this space?
University Readers provides full course pack and custom textbook services. Like you'd expect, we do full copyright clearance and indemnification, a variety of print and digital formats (laptops, iPads, droid tablets, etc.), and an exceptional turnaround time of 2-3 weeks. What makes us unique is 3 benefits to stores: 1.) our publisher partnerships, which provide about 120,000 readings from top academic publishers like Routledge, University of Chicago Press, Perseus Books, and more in our online library. Faculty can mix-and-match on content online, and order their course pack; 2.) our one-on-one reference consultation services with faculty, which help bridge syllabi and learning outcomes to readings. This helps bring brand-new faculty to custom; 3.) our targeted marketing approach can find faculty teaching courses more apt to custom, with suggestions for content based on the tens of thousands of readings and projects we've done over the years. We're ready to partner with stores to help them grow custom on their campus.
4) Who should stores contact for more information?
Contact Christopher Foster, General Vice President at email@example.com, or Mike Simpson, Vice President Sales and Acquisitions at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will also be at CAMEX and the New Exhibitor Hall at Booth #3323, and presenting ourselves during the Technology Product Spotlight.
Thanks so much!
Sunday, February 12, 2012
Saturday, February 11, 2012
Friday, February 10, 2012
Our product (MIYO – Make It Your Own) is unique in at least four ways:
Thursday, February 9, 2012
Tuesday, February 7, 2012
- Carnegie Mellon OLI: More than $6.5 million
- MIT Open Courseware: More than $7 million with an annual operating expense of $3.5 million. MIT requests donations on its website.
- Yale University’s Open Yale Courses are recorded lectures as taught, and are available in video and audio formats from the Open Yale Courses website. For each course the university Yale has spent $30,000 to $40,000 for each course it puts online. Yale has approximately 36 courses and has plans to add more. Yale requests donations on its website.
- Kahn Academy: $16.5 million with a $3 million annual operating budget
Monday, February 6, 2012
The administration noted that digital books are viewed as a way to provide interactive learning, potentially save money and get updated material faster to students. "Potentially" is a key word here, as there is little evidence that digital will save money, particularly over the long term. While there is some evidence that interactive digital tools by some of the traditional textbook publishers do improve learning outcomes, there is still much question about the educational value of technology. One news story uses the following quote to point out this challenge:
Clifford Stoll, the author of "Silicon Snake Oil: Second Thoughts on the Information Highway," may have made the best point for the opposition when he compared computers to the filmstrips of his youth. "We loved them because we didn't have to think for an hour, teachers loved them because they didn't have to teach, and parents loved them because it showed their schools were high-tech. But no learning happened."The news story goes on to question the true affordability of digital, which requires access to technology which may not be evenly distributed among public schools. The administration hopes that digital course materials and the technology they run on will become more affordable in coming years.
According to the original Associated Press story, the government also released a 67-page "playbook" to schools that promotes the use of digital textbooks and offers guidance.
Sunday, February 5, 2012
Saturday, February 4, 2012
“The research clearly demonstrates the importance of a cross device digital marketing strategy. The more connected devices consumers own, the more their behaviors change and the more complex their purchasing habits become. Those brands and retailers that can best accommodate this changing dynamic will be best placed to generate new sales and capitalize on consumers’ desire to use their smartphone for research and purchase more in the future.”
Friday, February 3, 2012
The Grow Custom Sponsor's page is also now live with links to each of the companies who are sponsoring this initiative and their booth number at CAMEX. Check them out. The new smart custom and tools to help faculty create them may not be the custom you remember.
Thursday, February 2, 2012
To be clear, we are not talking about "dumb custom" here, which traditional has been viewed as a poor product, and justifiably so. For more on smart versus dumb custom, please read our prior post on that topic from a couple weeks ago.
The Grow Custom initiative is about growing good value, good products, and good business.
We know that many stores have traditionally resisted custom course materials for a range of reasons. Today's (and tomorrow's) custom is not what it once was. The data we are observing suggests that the custom movement, whether stores choose to participate or not, will be larger than the recent shift to rental -- a model which transformed some aspects of the North American college store industry over the past two years. Stores that forgo engaging in growing custom will see further market share reduction. Stores cannot pass on this opportunity to help students acquire the "just what you need to succeed" course materials for the classroom. The future of custom is not just a "win-win" for stores and their communities, but a "win, win, win."
We are NOT alone.
The good news is that there are many companies and organizations -- both old and new to our industry -- which can help stores be more successful with growing custom. Even better, they recognize the value of the college store in the custom equation.
NMS is excited to announce our first TEN sponsor partners of the Grow Custom initiative. At CAMEX they will be highlighting their solutions and NMS will be coordinating a range of activities to give stores exposure to what is happening in the custom space. We will soon be providing links to additional information about each of these sponsors and will provide additional information through the NMS website. We strongly encourage you to take the time to attend product spotlights, visit booths, watch demos, and talk with these organizations about what they are doing in the custom space.
Our initial 10 sponsors include the following organizations:
We thank these sponsors of the Grow Custom initiative. At CAMEX and in the coming weeks be prepared to hear more about the Grow Custom initiative and these organizations. Watch for more information throughout this month and 2012. Be sure to check out our sponsors of this initiative at a later date, and view the NMS Grow Custom information page often as information about our sponsors and other opportunities or resources will be added regularly. You can also complete an Interest in Participation Form to learn more about this or other current NMS initiatives.