E-textbooks: Are they a simple choice for universities and publishers?

College students have been using printed textbooks for years, but digital publishing students have purchased digital books or e-textbooks for their classes. There are some advantages and disadvantages for college students using e-textbooks. Textbooks for college students have been both necessary and expensive throughout their college careers. One book could cost over two hundred dollars even with the help of scholarships or financial aid. It also depends on if a student has more than three classes during a semester or term how many textbooks they have to carry with them to and from class. One course material could be cover in multiple books or maybe one book. Students could hold a decent weight of textbooks around campus daily for their classes. Going digitally for college would be easy for some students and publishing companies; there are some faults when using laptops or tablets for e-textbooks.

              Different companies are getting into digital textbooks. Pearson, Chegg, Cengage, and Amazon are four companies that students use to buy or rent their books. Because of the success of those four companies and most if not all students have eight a laptop or a tablet they use for their courses. Those companies have a reasonable price for e-textbooks for students to either rent or buy. While also affording any addition of the textbook as well. Students can rent a digital book for a semester from these companies through the companies’ app or the university during the first to second week semester or term. E-textbooks would have more manageable and quicker to correct any mistakes after publication. For students have an e-textbook would be an easy way with them at all times. They would find the chapter or session quicker by using the search feature. Some digital textbooks are much more affordable for students to purchase or rent. Students can have some or all of their classes’ books on one device for them to use.  

              The use of digital textbooks does have some drawbacks for both the students and the publishing companies. Some students may not have a laptop or tablet they can use for class, or they may not be as tech-savvy as other students.  If a student buys the e-textbook, the book can’t be resale or sent it back to the company at the end of the semester or term. The student will have textbooks in their digital library of the apps they used to purchase it. Even if they delete it from their library, it’s still there in cyberspace. There is also the harm of blue light from laptops’ and tablets’ screens for students’ eyes. Students are straining their eyes looking at these screens for an extended time when looking at any computer or tablet’s screen. These laptops and tablets need to be charged daily. Some students would instead use a printed text for their studies. At the same time, some of the apps need to have an internet connection to work correctly. If the app is not open within an internet connection once, some app features would be out of sync or have a glitch when open outside of wifi. Publishers might have found some glitches in the apps that are difficult to fix in time for the start of the semester or term. The digital textbook is not up to date, or they do not have all the different versions of the book. Professors would rather have their students use printed texts to save time for the class.   

              Digital textbooks do have advantages and disadvantages for both students and publishers. Publishers still sell the printed versions to universities to be acceptable from selling printed and digital texts. It would have to be the choice of the user and their preference whether a student wants to have all their textbooks on one device or wish to have physical text to have zero distance when studying. It’s entirely up to the students and their choice for their class. Which would you choose? Printed textbooks or e-textbooks to use for your classes.