The direct library supply of individual textbooks to students: examining the value proposition

Publication Date13 November 2017
Date13 November 2017
AuthorDominic Broadhurst
SubjectLibrary & information science,Librarianship/library management,Library & information services
The direct library supply of
individual textbooks to students:
examining the value proposition
Dominic Broadhurst
University of Manchester, Manchester, UK
Purpose This paper aims to highlight the value of a library led e-textbook programme at a the UK
Design/methodology/approach The data for the resultswere obtained from two surveys of students.
First, from an online survey of 575 students who received an individual copy of an e-textbook from The
University of Manchester Library. Second, from a face to face survey of 146 students, based on a random
sample of studentsentering the Alan Gilbert Learning Commonsat the University. In addition, a series of one-
to-one interviews were conducted with 40 members of academic faculty, who were teaching the course
modules,on which the students received their own e-textbook.
Findings This research highlights the signicant benets a library led e-textbook service can offer to
students, academicfaculty, the wider University and to the prole of the library. Provision of the e-textbooks
leads to higher engagement of learning from students, their increased satisfaction with the University and
Library, plus addresses issue of reducing their direct costs. It also leads to enhanced pedagogy from the
perspectiveof academic faculty.
Practical implications The paper addresses issues of inequality of provision for individual students
and contributesto enhanced learning for all students.
Originality/value Library led initiatives are verynew in this eld and this project is one of the rst to
both undertakethis provision and to undertake extensiveresearch to assess the value of the project.
Keywords Pedagogy, E-textbooks, Innovation, Teaching, E-books, Learning analytics, Textbooks
Paper type Case study
Books Right Here Right Now is a major strategy project at The University of Manchester
Underpinning this projectare two fundamental aims:
(1) To improve the student experience by increasing the number of electronic core
textbooks provided by the Library.
(2) To establish the Library as the central point for the negotiation and management
of textbook deals to ensure smarter pricing models and develop a strategic
overview of all core textbooks being purchased by the Library and University.
To achieve these aims, we intended (through the set-up and operation of the e-textbook
pilots) to achieve the following:
Provide each student on selected course units with a copy of their own e-textbook.
Address the perennial issue of insufcient core texts for these students.
Develop and set-up alternative models of acquisition and supply.
Library supply
of individual
Received18 July 2017
Revised12 September 2017
Accepted12 September 2017
Informationand Learning Science
Vol.118 No. 11/12, 2017
pp. 629-641
© Emerald Publishing Limited
DOI 10.1108/ILS-07-2017-0072
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