A Preliminary Investigation of Intention to Use an Electronic Textbook

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The idea of an electronic textbook (e-textbook) is nothing new. Among benefits of e-textbooks are their low cost, search tools, portability, accessibility, and environmental friendliness. With the increasingly high cost of printed textbooks combined with an economic downturn over the last few years, some universities have started making e-textbooks an alternative to traditional printed textbooks for their students. While e-textbook sales have continued to increase, the adoption of e-textbooks to the masses has been a slow process. The cost of e-textbook is believed to be too high and the main reason that causes the slow adoption process. This study aims to investigate factors that influence students to use an e-textbook and factors that discourage them from doing so. The study surveyed opinions of almost 500 students from 4 universities. Among our findings, student learning performance is a main factor that encourages students to consider using e-textbooks. We also learn that to make e-textbooks more adoptable, it takes more than a lower cost. It requires both facilitating technologies and embedded e-content to enhance the learning process that engages both the instructor and students. When this technology and content happen, it could change the teaching methods of instructors and the learning by students.


Published: Laosethakul, K. and Yajiong Xue. "A Preliminary Investigation of Intention to Use an Electronic Textbook." Ubiquitous Learning: An International Journal 3.4 (2011): 113-126.

Paper also presented at Ubiquitous Learning Conference, University of British Columbia, 10 to 11 December 2010, Vancouver, Canada.