Thursday, May 31, 2012

Surveys Show Digital Migration on the Rise

The latest information released from the Book Industry Study Group’s Student Attitudes Toward Content in Higher Education survey shows that students’ textbook rentals and online purchases are up, while the college store share of course material sales slipped.

The study reported that 11% of students in the survey were renting textbooks, a three-point rise from 2011. The number purchasing new textbooks slipped from 59% to 55%. At the same time, the Amazon share rose from 25% to 31%.

In addition, almost 48% of students said integrated learning systems help more with studying, compared to 45% using printed textbooks and 37% using e-textbooks.

“Our research shows that students are looking for greater value from their textbook-purchasing dollar,” said Angela Bole, deputy executive director of BISG. “How they define ‘value’ is rapidly evolving as they’re exposed to new services and products.”

CourseSmart also released information on students’ reliance on technology. The company’s survey showed that of the more than 500 college students responding, 98% use their electronic device for school and 67% can’t go for more than an hour without using digital technology.

The CourseSmart survey found that students are more likely to bring a laptop to class than a printed book by a 51% to 39% margin. It also showed that 58% of the students in the survey have taken an online course, 79% have submitted assignments online, and 71% have taken a test or quiz online.

“The survey underscores the undeniable influence technology has on today’s college experience,” said Sean Devine, CEO of CourseSmart. “As technology continues to evolve and digital devices become integral to the evolution of higher education, it’s encouraging to see the positive impact on learning outcomes as students utilize advanced devices and digital course materials to streamline and improve their learning environment.”

The OnCampus Research study, Student Watch 2012: Student Attitudes and Perceptions found that just 17% of students surveyed currently own an e-reading device and that 62% of those who own the gadget bought it for leisure reading, compared to just 39% using it for school. Additionally, just seven percent of the students who currently do not own an e-reader have plans to buy one in the near future.

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