Affordable tools

Future teachers use affordable and relevant resources for their education

In the College of Education at Kansas State University, a new way of owning and using textbooks has taken over. Through the Open/Alternative Textbook Initiative, also known as Textbooks 2.0, professors such as Lori Goodson have written specialized textbooks that hone in on class content and offer opportunities to be reused in the future.

Student teachers, or new teachers, are always learning, and thanks to the Textbooks 2.0 initiative, they are able to refer to their textbooks used in college, right on their phones. Textbooks 2.0 is a grant program that provides funding for K-State faculty and instructors to develop affordable alternatives to traditional print textbooks.

“When I decided to make the ibook, it wasn’t as daunting as I thought it would be,” Goodson said. “We had the intent when creating the textbook to go beyond our classroom so it can follow students when they are teaching and need reminders on how to do a think-aloud helping their students understand a subject, or reminders on approaches to help students learn new vocabulary. They can go to the digital textbook and find resources that continue to support them.” 

Before Textbooks 2.0, Goodson’s classes were using a traditional textbook costing $130, and using only pieces of it. Goodson has written three Textbooks 2.0 resources, saving her students lots of money.  

“I feel much more ethical now about what I am offering the students,” Goodson said. “I think Textbooks 2.0 has really benefited me as a professor because I got to narrow down what I want the students to learn, and I’ve put my own special spin on it as far as what I feel is valuable.” 

The ibook allows different features such as being able to highlight and jump to different and relevant sections of the book, which correlate directly to lectures. 

“We wanted something that focuses and specializes on the information we use in class so students aren’t paying for excessive information that isn’t relevant to what we’re teaching,” Goodson said. “The students really benefit from these digital textbooks because they have something that is portable, affordable and something that really focuses on things they’ll use in their career. We’re also able to update the ibooks with new, relevant information, making them a living document that is always current.” 

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